I hate progress. I mean, I don’t…but I do. Wouldn’t it just be easier to live on a farm somewhere prior to the invention of the cotton gin and penicillin? We wouldn’t have to worry about cell phones, the Internet, auto repairs, paperwork, Al Gore, or…Twitter, ugh. I admit, I readily jumped on the Linkedin bandwagon years ago. But then I started getting tons of invites to join Plaxo, Spoke, and all sorts of other networks. But I figured Linkedin was going to be the leader, so I stayed put and resisted the temptation to have a profile on every network that came along.
Then came MySpace. It was too huge to ignore completely, but after one visit all I could think was “Really, is this it?” I could see how it might be fun for a bunch of high school kids, the same way a high-school party is fun for high-school kids, but I’m a grown man with thinning hair and a gut. It didn’t seem appropriate for someone like me to be on MySpace.
And then there was Facebook. Wait, isn’t Facebook just the same thing as MySpace? No? It’s got grown-ups on it? Well, I’ll believe it when I see it. So I held out for several months, maybe a year, and then I read that Proctor & Gamble or some such large company was using it as an alumni database and that they had 10,000 of their current and former employees on it, and so I figured it was worth a second look. Within a few days of signing up I was hooked.
But this left me in a bit of a bind. On the one hand, I knew that social media tools could be fun and addicting, and maybe even useful. On the other hand, I had just doubled the number of social media networks I belonged to (I’m not going to count delicious), plus I had jumped on the blogging bandwagon a few years before and was trying to run about 10 of them, plus I have actually have a job I’m supposed to be working at, plus I was trying to reduce information overload ala The Four Hour Work Week, so I really wasn’t in the mood to join anything else, like Twitter. No matter how much it was in the news. No matter how many of my friends and associates were using it. No matter how much I was feeling left behind what with all the @whatevers and tinyurls and #such messages floating around that I didn’t understand. No matter how well I knew that once I signed up I’d find it just as fun and addicting and “useful” as Facebook and Linkedin. But…then I gave up and gave in. Follow me @donloper.