Monday, June 19, 2017

Social is killing blogs

I blogged much more before social media turned many of us into over-sharers and shifted all of the cats on trampoline photos from e-mail to Facebook. While I post to Twitter and Facebook a few times a day, I am lucky if I post a couple of times a month to my blog.

It's just so easy to snap a photo of your lunch and post it to Instagram with five or six random hashtags than it is to think of something profound and expound upon it on Blogger. Now granted, whereas 28 people have voluntarily followed me on my blog, the people who like photos of what I'm eating tend to be random strangers who are trying to lure me to sketchy sites to look at porn.

Now I do have about 1,127 followers on Twitter (Blogger's note: A day after posting this, I was down to 1,125...who said social media marketing wasn't effective). A bulk of them are complete strangers whose primarily reason for following me is so I would follow them. I fell for this Ponzi scam for awhile until I began to figure out Twitter. Now I tend to only follow news and travel outlets. But even those inundate my Twitter feed with 20 different versions of the same headline. At least I was one of the first to know that Carrie Fisher's autopsy showed she had traces of alcohol, heroin, cocaine and ecstasy in her system when she had a heart attack (to which I retweeted that she had something more than the force strong in her).

And not one of the 1,127 people following me and hanging on my every Tweet liked my snarky comment. Now if I'd posted that on Facebook, at least one of my 161 closest Facebook friends would have at least liked it or given it a smiley face.

Linkedin is an entirely different story. The 470 connections there would simply have frowned and wondered how they were going to get me to hire them or their consulting firm. People on Linkedin just don't have a sense of humor.

I do use Twitter and Facebook to promote my blog posts. When I write a new post, I put a link to it on Facebook which automatically sends a Tweet with the link as well. I double down by also posting a photo and a link to Twitter with a clever hash tag or two. And ironically the traffic on my blog stays relatively flat with occasional spikes due to traffic driven inexplicably to my blog by porn and carpet sales sites in the Ukraine.

I find it a bit disturbing how political Facebook has become, though. Granted, the photos of kids and pets were becoming a bit mundane, but I am getting sick of the constant diatribes about that buffoon squatting in the White House and how near he is to being ousted.

If only it were true.

That's the thing. Nothing in the Internet can be trusted. It's not like the good old days when you'd get those great direct mail pieces from Publisher's Clearing House declaring YOU HAVE not WON A MILLION DOLLARS! That's when America was truly great. At any moment a washed up celebrity could appear at your door with a giant check and a bunch of balloons declaring you had won a sweepstakes just for buying magazine subscriptions. You don't get that on social media.

Even e-mail used to bring more genuine offers to wire you millions of dollars from lonely Nigerian cocoa plantation owners. I miss those Nigerian spammers.  You don't get those types of offers on social media either.

I wonder what will eventually replace social media. Will we don virtual reality headsets and spend our time mingling in virtual parties while wearing virtual lampshades on our heads? Or will we stop interacting with people completely and settle down with the next generation of AI friends who want to carry on real philosophical conversations in between you asking them what a duck-billed platypus sounds like (my daughter wanted to know).

In the meantime, I'm going to hunker down here and wait for blogs to make a comeback.

What? It could happen. It's not like I am still waiting for traffic on my MySpace page.

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