I’m watching this whole Anthony Weiner thing unfold and trying to figure out what exactly to think about it. Meanwhile, I’m mostly mulling over the idea of social media and all the junk that’s started to creep out and about because of it.
Here I am. I have this here blog. So you could say I’m out here in the social media universe. I started my blog about a year ago because I wanted to connect with other writerly types. I wanted a place to write about all the books I read (or try to read). This writing business can be such a solo slog, and it helps to vent and chat with my like-minded, opinionated peers. It’s also turned out to be (unexpectedly) a great way to clear my head, a kind of sweeping out the cobwebs so I can refocus and get my writing mind back to work.
But Twitter and Facebook — they scare the livin’ lights out of me.
I do not have a Twitter account. Dear god, no, I do not tweet. As I write this I hope I never do (I know, I know, we’ll see how that goes). But in all seriousness, I just don’t get it. I don’t. Everybody says we writers need to be out there tweeting. That we need to become “part of the conversation.” There’s one writer who’s Twitter feed I check now and then, thinking she might have something interesting to say. She never does. She argues with people. She makes grandiose and often ridiculous comments. She whines. She often sounds downright mean. Following her “tweets” has made me like her less, respect her less. And I’m pretty sure that’s not the goal.
I have a Facebook page, though I don’t post much of anything. I occasionally comment or press the “like” button; I might send someone a message because I know they no longer read regular e-mail. That’s pretty much it. The boring and threadbare minimum. I’m more a Facebook voyeur, using my page to keep up with family photos, to see what my brothers are up to, to live vicariously through friends who live overseas. Every now and again I’ll post some photos — maybe from a great vacation we’ve returned from — only to take them down within days. It just starts to feel weird having them out there in vaporland.
So back to this Weiner thing. He now claims he has never seen any of these women in person. That they chatted online after he met them on Facebook and/or Twitter.
I would suggest that if you’ve met someone using 140 characters or less, you’ve not actually met. Nor can you think you are “friends” because someone friended you on Facebook. You can’t trust a Facebook photo; I often use my dog Lucy as my profile picture. It’s not me. Really, it’s not. You heard it here first.