For some time now I’ve been doing everything through social media, mainly Facebook. While Facebook is good for sharing a quick thought and trading links, there are a few things that bother me about it. They aren’t necessarily faults of Facebook (or social media in general). It’s just that I don’t think that it’s hard for one interface to do and be everything. I’m not abandoning Facebook. I still want to know what everyone is doing, see the cool links my friends found or at least re-posted. If you’re an attractive woman I still want to right click and save your picture to my personal database*. I also want to be able to share and connect and re-post things. Partly because my ego tells me that I’m so witty, smart, and cool that obviously I should be putting stuff I think is awesome in 100+ people’s media feeds where I know everyone obsessively goes. I mean, surely in the endless sea of posts, mine’s the one that brightens your day right?
But that’s also part of the problem …
Facebook is an endless sea of crashing words and links and pictures. Everything is all mixed and jumbled together in whatever order Facebook seems to think is appropriate for us that week. There is an air of impermanence to it all. I’m sure that everything is there if I look hard enough, clicking “more stories” enough times.
- Post Length
One of my concerns with social media is that the format either encourages (or enforces) a short form post. In many ways the way we think is shaped by language, and I’m a little concerned that by limiting myself to a small word count I’m limiting myself to small thoughts. I’m hoping that by giving myself a more open space, maybe I can open myself up to doing some of the creative projects that never seem to get past the concept stage.
- A Personal Space
For the most part, one person’s Facebook page looks like every other Facebook page. It’s a relatively clean and efficient format that delivers every post and picture and link like a faithful postal worker. But that doesn’t leave much room for artistry or personality. WordPress gives me an opportunity to create (or at least choose) and tweak an environment that while maybe not unique, at least helps reflect a more personal view.
This issue is closely related to the Personal Space issue. I own the domain name. I decide which comments make it to the bottom of the post. I control the horizontal and the vertical. I can have multiple links and pictures in the post if I want. All the while I can sleep soundly knowing that it won’t have been changed by Facebook during my slumber.
- A Sense of Permanence
One of the great things about a blog is the sense permanence. No, I have no illusion that someone will maintain the site or all its content once I’m dead and gone, or that blogs are somehow immune to an EMP, or the fall of civilization, or the inevitable rise of Cthulhu. But for the most part as long as things continue and I pay my bills, this can be around. With that comes a little more responsibility as well. I mean if this were on facebook, I can rest assured that in a week or two it would be too much work to find the post for most people to worry about tracking it down to look at. Here someone could copy the link to a specific post and bookmark it, share it. Hopefully, if I’m lucky, I’ll occasionally make stuff worth coming back to.
* … or if you’ve “locked” your pictures to prevent me from doing so, go into the source code for the page to find the image source file, paste it into a new tab, so that I can save from there. Don’t judge me until you stop posting shots of your cleavage. Come on, this is the internet.