Bye Shouty Twitter?
What a few weeks it's been. In the last two to three weeks I’ve gradually decreased my time and interest in social media, particularly Twitter (just because that is were I spend most of my online time).
In the last week or two I have found social media, but again more so Twitter, has become a place that's basically a ’news’ show. It’s often one way conversation, which flips on a dime based on popularity, or the story of the moment.
This person is 100% bad, this person is 100% good, and a rhetoric of extremes and 'black and white thinking'. Personally, I assure you, I live in a world with a lot or shades of grey; rarely is there a clear obvious simple 'good' answer or reaction to have. Let alone an honest one of not knowing.
There seems to be a lack of compassion or understanding for anyone that thinks differently, even if they are open to learning. Again there is this idea of social media being a news site, rather than being 'social' or 'networking'.
Thinking differently is how we learn and evolve; through discussion and understanding, and acknowledging in some cases our own ignorance.
In the last few weeks I have found social media has no longer been a place to share, discover and learn, educate yourself. It’s filled with shouting the only voice is the loudest, proclaiming "No, do it this way, do it my way!"
Gone are the awesome conversations involving: “I didn’t know that”, “thank you for sharing”, “that’s interesting I wouldn’t have thought of it like that”, "wow, I would never have know/ thought that". The learning has gone, the openness has gone.
It’s a personal thing I guess. But I don’t have expectations of others (mainly through a lack of trust), so my only expectations are of myself.
I’ve definitely made mistakes in the past and probably will do in the future. But I’m ready to learn and to be educated and to share my own insights too.
There are so many things we can learn about and discuss: mental health, poverty, race inequalities, gender stereotyping and the general lack of compassion we sometimes show.
For now I have changed how I am using social media, though that change has mainly been using it less.
I also think there is a common misunderstand of social media 'communities'. For me it's about the community you create around yourself. There isn't necessarily a 'the community'.
So, I have unfollowed a few people and muted a few more, I have also found a few people that are passionate about things I don't know as much about, but want to know more (which has previously been a great way to refresh my community online).
It is this thought process that has led me to some interesting conversations or new knowledge in the past; such as moon cups, stomas, infertility, homelessness, gender and sexuality struggles during puberty and many more topics/ subjects.
I hope/ know social media (and twitter) will be a resource I use more again in the future. But for now I am going to limit my time and my investment in social media. Plus, I need to limit the amount of times I am exposed to the words "Daily Briefing" and "World Beating System", the UK is a difficult confusing and often misleading place right now.