Why I Love Social Media – ‘Cause It Loves Me Back
It’s usually towards the end of the year when I become somewhat reflective; I always have. What did the last year bring and what is likely to happen in the coming year? And increasingly, my interactions, concerns and yes, partial happiness come from the world of social media. Social media is about making connections with people, and human being humans, we often take our interactions to the next level and get to meet face-to-face.
A few events in the last weeks have me think of how impactful connecting with people through social media has been in my life – and how it can only increase.
- Just today, I learned that my friend, Chip Griffin is going to have a heart procedure this Monday. Chip did a post about it and is realistic about describing it as a fairly low-risk procedure/surgery, but like I told him, quoting Homer Simpson, any time that they “tinker with your ticker,” it is something serious. Be well, my friend.
- Jason Falls, as well, did some hospital time over the Christmas holiday for a strep throat that went out of control like a Kennedy at an open bar. Jason not only kept those of us following up to speed, but he admitted, Tweeting helped calm his nerves. He even did a video from his hospital bed (below). Get well, my friend and the next Maker’s Mark is on me.
- Shel Holtz recently had some surgery, not going into a lot of detail, but Neville Hobson reported that after 400+ episodes, he was flying solo, unwillingly, without Shel. Shel is doing fine now, from what I understand.
- Over Thanksgiving, I watched and connected with my Indian friends who were lost — or leading — or drinking from the information fire hose that was the tragedy in Mumbai. I have some pretty strong personal emotions regarding September 11 in the United States, and to me, this was India’s September 11th. People like Shonali Burke helped lead the Tweets and keep them sane while other smart people like Shilpika Das were asking the question we all were: WHY?
- And so it’s not all bad stuff, I had drinks with three of my all-time favorite Georgetown students, and like a Proud Poppa, learned that one of them, Kristen Wesley, submitted a simple, elegant and “totally her” submission about what sort of superpowers she would have if she were a computer and — whammo bammo — ended up in “Wired” magazine. No kidding. I take zero credit for this, but teaching 20-some new students twice a year keeps me always on my toes, often feeling young at heart and more often than not, like in Kristen’s case, extremely proud and happy.
I would go on and on, but my point is that I have met some of the people above and I have not met others. But I consider them all my friends. So yes, I scoff at people who think that we who blog or Tweet or vlog all live in our mom’s basements and speak Vulcan fluently.
Sure, my main social circle consists of my family, but I am so, so fortunate to have a group of people whom I can reach out to when they might need a little cheer and I have certainly benefited from my online and offline group of friends through my own surgery this year.
So whether you are reading this through a tweet, my Facebook page or you have stumbled across my little corner of cyberspace, I am grateful for you all. We support each other, joke with each other and laugh with each other.
We are a network.
And here’s Jason’s video”