It’s so darned easy to get sucked into the social Tsunami called Facebook and ride the same waves that your Friends ride. You hear about music their listening to, places where they eat, teams they root for, pictures of them doing stuff…
You Like a page someone else likes and then you never touch that page again. You Like someone’s comment but you never comment yourself. You tell others when you’re happy, when you’re sad; when you found a new job, when someone close to you died. When your baby burped, when you burped. You tell someone you love them – as if it carries more weight when the entire world knows. You denigrate someone in a post and then feel sad and reflective when they commit suicide…
There’s also a preponderance of “look at me” posts – isn’t it enough to know you possess a six-pack? Or that your kid is an honor student at the middle school? These posts actually sadden me; are people’s self-esteems so damaged that the only cure is to post to Facebook in the hope of feeling the miniscule spritz of dopamine whenever someone clicks “Like” or comments?
The dangers of “social stupidity” are personal and professional: Facebook is identified in far too many divorce cases as “a cause” and far too many people rant about the professional shortcomings of their employers and bosses. Of course, I feel that I have to also mention the polarizing effects of political discussions: Does anyone really believe the hard left/hard right discussions of anarchy build real communities? Or do they simply foment something ugly and insidious without a chance for seeking a common ground?
Would it surprise you if I told you that although some view me as a moderately influential “social recruiter” I have grown weary of the Weight of Facebook? Although I can make any social channel “sing”, I’ve concluded that there are far more effective ways to recruit than with Facebook and there are far better ways to stay in touch with friends than with Facebook. It’s time to shut it down.
I’ve done quite well the better part of my life without it. How about you?
Since you probably won’t post this on Facebook, I guess I’ll have to… a nasty job but somebody has to do it! How else will your message get directly to the biggest obsessive-compulsive users?
I too have been tied to social media and if there is such a thing as a personal brand we are both probably tainted with a SoMe side. The problem with many is that they reject “old school” ideas and think that they have stumbled onto something new when they hide behind a computer. Young tech savvy individuals will someday turn into lonely old people with only fake online relationships if they don’t get off their butts and have eyeball-to-eyeball contact with people.
My mantra is to make somebody talk and maybe smile every day. I avoid the self check-out line at the supermarket so that I can call a cashier by name and surprise them… most forget they are wearing a name tag. I am far from being an extravert, but asked the phlebotomist taking my blood after my physical where she went to school and what her plans are for her career. Dale Carnegie hit it on the head when he said to talk in terms of the other person’s interests… and I don’t think he meant on Facebook.
I would write more about this, but TweetDeck just dinged and told me I had a DM.
Ugh, you have so stated what I often times think when I look at my Facebook account and see all the pics of people who feel the need to display themselves seeking confirmation that they are “looking good.” In addition, there are a couple of people I am connected to that feel the need to give daily blow-by-blows of everything going on their lives, even when it borders on too personal.
Personally, I don’t mind seeing pics of special occasions or hearing about happy events in someone’s life, but when I just see everyday pics of someone who needs affirmation of his/her good looks, I just keep scrolling down the page until I find something of greater interest. IMHO, Facebook has turned into the non-sense information that Twitter used to spew. Of the three social sites I frequent, Facebook has dropped from being my #2 to being my #3.
I won’t pontificate on how people should use of not use Facebook, that’s an individual choice. The decision lies with me in either continuing to be connected to these individuals or not.
@Tom @Cyndy – we’ve spoken about this for years; of course there are reasonable reasons for using FB but ost simply use it for some kind of bully pulpit. I prefer to call you…
If I average 5 minutes on FB for an entire week, do I really need it?
This is a great post Steve, while not all of us have drank the Facebook koolaid- I get your point and it is so true. We have become consumed with every wimper, event, ache, and pain by sharing it on Facebook. Do people care…probably not, but it’s the ‘it” thing to do so everyone is all over it.
I don’t like Facebook for recruiting and while I have been told that I am missing out on a certain portion of the talent I am trying to attract- I am fine with that. I am more interested in building a community around the science and discoveries at BNL. If we get a hire from that-great! If not, so be it.
I agree 150% with what you have said in this post.
All the best,
Thx Tru…I’m actually pretty good at social recruiting but I’d be hard pressed to identify BNL quality people via Facebook. If you need me to speak to someone about this, let me know ;)
I probably check in on Facebook about twice a week. Have hidden the biggest majority of posts on my news feed because they were painfully boring even from people I like. It makes me a little sick to see couples posting things to each other about their love life that in my book is ” too much information”. I have decided that most of social media has caused adults to act like high schoolers, babbling on about what hits their brain at the moment.
For me the most boring thing in the world is people posting about a football game while it is going on.
I do like seeing pictures that people post of places, events and family if we are not in contact often but posting pictures of themselves everyday makes me wonder if they own a mirror.
As to Facebook recruiting, I got one referral once that I was able to get one interview but not a hire and he had sent his resume to a careerbuilder post an hour previously so for me if Facebook died tomorrow I wouldn’t notice it for a week at least. It is still there isn’t it?
There are too many live things in my life to spend much time in fantasy land. Sure is a good venue to find out all the things about candidates they don’t want to tell me. My opinion more people shoot themselves in the foot on social media than ever do much more than entertain themselves with trivia.
By the way we are sitting in the middle of 8″ of snow in the Texas panhandle. No shit, so what, who cares. Anybody want to borrow five big dogs and six horses for a few days? I didn’t think so.
Perhaps Facebook needs to get into the hospitality business for when you want to tell people to get a room…
I agree that Facebook as a tool for recruiting is weak. In fact, I don’t use it at all, I like to keep Facebook all personal, Linkedin in all business and Twitter a generous mix. In terms of Facebook I enjoy engaging in the pointless political discussions, seeing your baby pictures and knowing what the guy I sat behind in high school biology had for lunch. Also, I find it a showcase for my wit, and post things that I don’t always want associated with my work profile.
I think a problem people have in understanding Social Media, and technology in general, as they at first appear to be nouns— but they are really verbs. They are evolving, changing, perhaps even living things…
We too need to change with them, leave bad “Old School” ideas behind (I haven’t “Pirated” into a company in years) and embrace the new.
We need to evolve and grow as people in order to be the best at our jobs.
Newman…you’ve always been different. I guess I’m just not the voyeuristic type – I don’t slow down for car accidents but I will stop and help people in need.
Ah, I feel your pain. Thankfully, my newsfeed isn’t filled with pictures of people posing but there are one or two who feel the need to over share. I often wonder why they think that anyone, let alone everyone, cares what they are cooking for dinner tonight or how they are feeling every single moment of every single day. I don’t need to read continual political posts either, even when your views align with mine.
That said, I agree with Cyndy that it’s up to each individual to use Facebook as they see fit. I’m not the Facebook police. My solution is to limit my friends – I have fewer than 40 FB friends and they’re all actually people I know – and hide the posts I don’t want to see. But, I do look forward to seeing pictures of my friends kids and dogs, getting a glimpse of their vacations, and knowing how my friend’s triathlon training is going. So I won’t be unplugging anytime soon.
Sorry I don’t have time to post a few cute pictures of our dogs – they are truly remarkable.
Levynator, first off, good to see the inferno is still going strong. I’m with you on this one, Stever. I will occasionally use Facebook to find somebody that does not exist on LinkedIn, Jigsaw, etc. Of the handful of times I’ve done so, Fbook has been successful in helping me connect with such a person. The rest of my Fbook time is mostly spent in some sort of scrapbook capacity, chronicling pics of my daughter’s basketball/softball teams, or searching for something I wish to buy/sell in a garage sale group. Translated in to recruiting-speak, I spend maybe 60 seconds/month using Facebook to connect with somebody regarding a job.
Certainly, some organizations are creating Fbook Pages and having a measure of success using their brand to interact with the general public. But from a recruiting perspective, I’d rather scour LinkedIn, Google, and Jigsaw, and dial a telephone number once I’ve found my target.
Hey, being social is fun – no question. But during the day, I’m more concerned with becoming a recruiting tsunami and getting my face in front of candidates, than with getting a few more likes on The Face Book.
Smitty – thanks for the kind words and understanding. What most folks don’t get is that as Facebook attempts to evolve into a revenue generating machine (of which I’m dubious), privacy and usefulness will be compromised.
No thank you – the people I care about I can email or call, and if I need to find something…well, you know how I am at this internet research thing ;)
Call this week?