Posts tagged social media bums
The other day my frenemy, Kerry McKibbin, posted the video below on Facebook and it made me and a few others wince with pain. The video pokes fun at what they call the “YouTube” generation. What they are referring to is the large number of pseudo-famous people who post videos on YouTube or tweet on Twitter who, for one reason or another, go viral overnight and then take their unexpected, short lived, accidental fame as expertise in whatever it is they got “famous” for. Here’s the vid.
DISCLAIMER: I Do not own the rights to this video and clearly neither does the poster of the vid. NBC Universal may at anytime remove the content, sue the crap out of the user who posted it from YouTube and repost it on their own channels/sites. Please don’t hurt me, NBC.
The ghosts of Antoine Dodson, Hungrybear9562 (double rainbow guy), and, I’m sad to say, a lot of people I’ve met at various social media events, conferences, outings rattle their chains as I write this. The vid satirizes “Twitter famous” people who, by virtue of their sizable followings, feel entitled to whatever it is they want. The character played by Daniel Radcliffe very poignantly explains that he got on the show by complaining to his many followers on twitter that he deserved to be on the show – the online equivalent of a spoiled kid tantrum or… terrorism.
It’s funny and yet so painful because it’s true. It’s the real dark side of the two-way conversation that has been opened up by social media and just about every “influencer” I have met is guilty of doing it to some degree at some point; myself included. I hang my head in shame at the admission of it but I did catch myself in the past and made my amends where necessary. Lalawag calls this phenomenon “Social Media Entitlement Syndrome” and there are a few variations to the meaning of the term from that most excellent article. I encourage you to read it:
1. Feeling and behaving as if one should be granted certain privileges (event access, free products, job offers) because he/she is well-known in social media.
2. Expecting all-access to an individual’s private life because he/she occasionally posts personal items in social networks.
3. Acting like it’s acceptable and normal to piss (bombard w/comments, tweets, DMs) on someone’s social stream.
4. Demanding that people retweet your content, and resenting them if they don’t.
5. Assuming that because you correspond with someone via social media, you should be invited to every social gathering that person plans or is involved with.
Some of them are more poignant for others, but you get the picture. If the video didn’t make you cringe enough, finding out that you’re guilty of one of the above will rub salt in the wound. I’ve noticed something of a binary divide in people you find on twitter and other social networks: people are either thought leaders with something to show for it (i.e. a book, a career in an related field, training, a popular blog) or they are noisemakers (read: social media bums) who are all over twitter but tend to have none of the aforementioned things coupled with a very vague twitter bio that mentions their love for cats and food.
The thing is that even before I saw the video I’ve noticed and been aware of the issue but not given it much focused thought. What I can tell you is that the issue itself is in part responsible for my far less frequent posts on this here blog. You could say I’ve lost my joie de vivre for posting for the sake of posting about my life. It all started when I changed the direction of this blog to be more about the reader than me as much as possible. I try to post about things that are within reach of a reader rather than brag about that super exclusive event I was invited to. If I go to something like that (although lately I haven’t had any time to do it for some time now) then I usually offer readers an opportunity to join me there or reap some benefit from the sponsor of the event. Still you’ll notice that my posts have been going mostly in the direction of marketing, advertising, SEO, futurism and so on.
This all goes right back to the Social Media Elephant in the Room and it’s no wonder why there is an ever growing cohort of people who just can’t wait to declare social media “dead” because they see, like you may be starting to now, what was described above. However social media is still big business even if the adoption rate is still a bit slow among bigger companies who are accustomed to outbound communications. The value is still that two-way channel of communication that can make or break a company in terms of marketing and increase accountability. However, the dark side that is entitlement remains and it’s hard to tell if it’s going anywhere any time soon.