How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love to Social Network

Come on, admit it. Social Networking, a sub-set of Social Media, is a  HUGE time-suck. This is probably the biggest downside to SN (along with the fact that everything in SM is acronymed). The reason SN and SM is such a time-suck is because it’s addictive, every bit as its completely unrelated non-cousins, heroin or gambling. SN, particularly, makes you feel good, so good in fact (well, not really a fact, but it sounds much better to say it this way) that we spend hours a week, more likely, hours a day, getting our fix. Unlike the nasty habit of drugs or gambling, we addicts don’t have to go out searching for it. Or pierce our skin, or ingest it (except through our eyes). In fact (um), we don’t have to do anything but read (good) and click (moderately good exercise for one finger.) We are led on a breadcrumb trail of ever-expanding delights of (some may say useless) information. That’s Social Media.

Now Social Networking is a whole different animal, though seemingly the same. Here, although interactive, it’s interactive with a twist. We don’t know what’s going to happen once we type in our sentences and send them off to those others staring listlessly into  his or her computer screens. It’s not only that we get reaction to our input, we also react to other people’s input. We can sidle up to any individual, or group, and interject our opinions, support a cause, or sob out our whole miserable life story. And there will always be someone on the other end who will listen. I don’t know this to be a fact (or any of the facts I propose to be facts), but I would think that the psychiatric community is wringing its collect hands. Especially since the advent of the Kindle, Nook, Ipad, and writers forums.

Many of these forums seem to be nothing more than a virtual corridor at the state-level psych ward with incoherent babbles echoing off the virtual walls. Luckily we are saved from the incessant rocking of heads, twitching of fingers, and vaporous odors. There is no Nurse Ratchet to save us from these doomed souls in their quest to unload their grief onto a willing audience.

But I digress. That was the worry part of my affliction. It took a while, but I was saved. Not by ambitious youths confronting me at the grocery checkout lane of my local supermarket threatening to save my soul, or by a near-death experience. No, nothing so escoteric. I was saved by friendship. Yep, the normal, humankind, accept-you-as-you-are type friendship. Albeit, not nameless, or even faceless (since near-perfect static images are presented for all to see), these accepting voices coming from all parts of the planet through streams of various type fonts have accepted me for who I want to be accepted as…a writer. But it goes deeper than that. Being a writer is only the common binding thread (as other forums have their binders). Once this tenacious thread wends it way through the community of like minds, we are hooked. Hooked into other people’s lives, their wants, needs, and cares. It is this influx of joy created by interacting with fellow human beings, selfless, that addicts us all.

I am still new to this Networking stuff, but I’m addicted. I care about the people I’ve never met. In this world, the famous and the unknown help one another without a thought of compensation. Social Networking, in my experience, has been the most christian of all institutions without one bit of proselytizing. There are no boundaries of nation, religion, politics, infirmities, sex, race, clothed or nude. In my view, this is the way religion should be.

This is why I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love to Social Network.

Stuart Land

I am a multi-genre novelist, screenwriter, and multi-medium sculptor. I have worked in the Fine Arts, and the Movie Industry.

26 Comments:

  1. Hi Stuart, great post. It’s true how social networks can foster friendships between people on different ends of the globe who have never met each other before!

    Have to thank you for stopping by the other Stuart’s blog (Stuart Nager’s Tale Spinning) to comment on my interview. To answer your question: yes, I’m from Malaysia, and yes, I got married and had my honeymoon there. Sawasdee to you, neighbour! 🙂

    • Hi J.C. Thanks for visiting my blog. Sorry it took so long to reply. For some reason I never received an update. Congratulations of your wedding. Your honeymoon seemed a great way to start it off. Best of luck with everything and your collaboration with Stuart Nager, one truly great writer. Choke dee, puean kong pom,

      Stuart

  2. Really enjoyed reading about your thoughts on SN, Stuart. It provides us so many opportunities for new friendships, new things to learn about ourselves and our world. And the writers’ community especially, is open and giving. Thanks for giving me a reason not to feel so guilty about the time I spend on it!

    • Oh, Jan, I’ve been so remiss in thanking people lately for visiting my blog. Please forgive me. I agree with your comment and do find that writers are the best, most open and giving.

  3. Stuart, stopping by from the Blog-A-Licious Tour
    I love your post, I couldn’t agree more. I’ve met some great people here in my blogosphere, and value the friendships.

    my guest post at commentluv “social media buttons”
    http://comluv.com/social-media-buttons/

  4. Hi, Stuart; good to *meet* you. I have to say, I think social networking has renewed my faith in humanity a bit. I encounter an unfortunately high number of people that I wish I hadn’t in my real life, but so many fantastic ones out in the blogosphere!

  5. Good post, and your writing is certainly entertaining and thoughtful. I’m #12 on the blog tour, and I’m glad I hopped on over.

  6. STUART LAND,

    This is so great . . . I’m following your advice the same as I would my favorite fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Ashbrenner! I’m laughing so hard, I have to go pee!

    Just posted a Review of SHADOW HOUSE on Amazon – SHADOW HOUSE (Kindle Edition) page.

    Thanks for a great read – loved it!

    Michael Phelps

  7. Don’t worry bout thing, cuz everything little thing gonna be all right.

    I also get sucked into the SM and SN thing. Not really a biggie except when I’m trying to get a book done. The upside is I’ve met some really great people online, like you!

  8. Funny isn’t it? Here we are having no idea who the people we are talking to actually are. I might be using a different name (I’m not) or a photo of someone/something else (I’m not). I might be man/woman black/white young/old gay/straight religious/atheist rich/poor and every variation in between.

    And it doesn’t matter in the slightest, does it?

  9. Stuart – well said from another SN addict. 😉

  10. Go Stuart! HIt that send. Hit that follow button. And keep on wrtting and yoy’ll kept on growing.

  11. I can only agree with Ey, my virtual friend too. I feel the same way as you, and I really love the bonding. Thanks for putting our thought into your words…

  12. Truly well said. Thank you from your addicted relative from another tree.

  13. Dear Son,, Well said!!! Mom, Joyce

Thanks for reading. I'm eager to hear what you have to say.