Plenty of us spend more of our time online creating content for ‘rented properties’ like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram than we’d like to admit. While Facebook is famously re-evaluating it’s newsfeed and how it prioritizes content, isn’t it time the rest of us reevaluate our relationship to that same newsfeed and these private, unaccountable, companies that profit off of the time we spend on their sites?
There are alternatives that don’t involve abandoning these sites, and in fact, have the potential to deepen connections with the most important friends, family, and customers while also streamlining our workflows there.
Why Weaning yourself from social media sites is so hard.
Hanging out on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter is so easy, and it can be fun. It helps us to stay connected to friends and family. It helps us to drive awareness and affinity for our businesses and causes we care about.
The recent panic when Facebook announced it’s algorithm update was fascinating to me. It resulted in what seemed to me much like a chain letter from the early days of email, where friend after friend posted appeals for me to respond to their posts or the algorithm would hide us from each other eternally.
One of my more popular friends, Chris Carlsson, posted like many of my friends, and at last count over 300 replies, including my own appeared imploring Facebook to include them in one of the ‘25 friends that you will see content from moving forward if you failed to engage with this post.’
I learned from this how addicted so many of us are to that newsfeed and the FOMO (fear of missing out) that drives the addictive nature of that app and site. Everyone seemed to be posting this until someone looked it up on Snopes.
As someone who has somewhat broken the addiction, but shifted it to Twitter, I am empathetic.
What I’m doing about it…
User Story: My Journey Towards #IndieWeb
While I’ve been attending meet up’s for the Indieweb for years now, I’m just getting started “publishing first” here on my WordPress blog, on my own domain that I own, and syndicating those comments out to my various social profiles. User Story is the title as it is part of dev culture to create a user story to drive development.
It’s part of my #NewwwYear resolution. I’m starting this User Story, a blog series about my journey to spend more time here and less on Facebook and the other silos. Slowly but surely, I intend to shift my time and focus over to this blog and implement the various in the web plug-ins available for WordPress. Once I am set up I plan to make a point to regularly visit the blogs of cool people like Chris Carlsson’s Nowtopians more than I do Facebook.
I hope it will look as exciting as Tantek, Ben Werd, and Ryan Barrett have demonstrated. They are founders in this indieweb movement, and their sites show how you can have a single place that you own, where the world can interact with you, see what you are up to.
With this one post, using brid.gy, I am alerting friends on Facebook and Twitter. Reply there if you see it and I will know I’ve taken a step forward. Now, off to the Homebrew Website Club Meetup to do more.