Do you take social networking (or blogging) too seriously?

Aug 29 • Featured, Uncategorized • 857 Views • 12 Comments on Do you take social networking (or blogging) too seriously?

One of my friends is a bit annoyed with me at the moment. I might take this a bit more seriously if the reason wasn’t so silly: she’s annoyed because when I was ill with gastroenteritis for four days the week before last, I didn’t respond to her texts or emails.

The fact that I was barely able to hold any food down, or leave the sanctuary of the bathroom, or eat, or that I went to bed at 8.45pm last Saturday (unheard of) seems to have totally escaped her. So I’m going to wait that one out until she comes to her senses.

But it has got me thinking about how personally I take other people’s behaviour sometimes – particularly online, which is even more silly if you think about it – and made me resolve not to be quite so sensitive, because you never know what other people have got going on in their lives.

Recently there has been a lot of conversation in the parent blogosphere about people feeling ignored, or that there’s a ‘them’ and ‘us’.  Sometimes you might read a post and think ‘she’s talking about ME’ – I know I’ve done that myself – but the chances are they’re probably not. (Or maybe they are, but hey, who cares? At least you’re being talked about.)

I've also been sent messages by people who are upset because I'm not following them on twitter (purely due to oversight in most cases) and facebook requests I haven't had the chance to respond to because I don't recognise the name.

So… maybe it's time to lighten up. I think that what we all have to remember is that everyone has busy lives with our families and work, and that social networking, although incredibly important to many of us (myself included), isn’t the be all and end all. Real life is much more important. And if my friend is reading this – I love you, I couldn't help being sick, stop being so blimmin' silly.

*What do you think? I'd love to hear your views

written by Liz Jarvis


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12 Responses to Do you take social networking (or blogging) too seriously?

  1. Fiona Erlandsen says:

    This makes complete sense to me. When I recently first joined the twitter network, I felt like this sometime, and now I just look back and think that was absolutely ridiculous. Everyone has busy lives, and no-one knows exactly what’s happening out of cyberworld. Perhaps your friend feels like she’s made a stand point that was too silly and is embarrassed to own up at her oversensitivity. Hopefully this blog post will help her dutch courage to own up to her silliness. Enjoy your Sunday

  2. Sarah @ Mumra says:

    Its a virtual world, especially when you haven’t actually met someone. Yes you may get on by tweets and emails but its much like online dating isn’t it, in the flesh it may not be the same… If when you step back from the computer and your relationships falter there must be an issue to their depth. I have friends from 20 years ago, sometimes our lives mean we don’t speak for months then when we finally do meet up it like we have missed nothing, surely this is real friendship. My OH calls social networking a virtual world full of losers, a place where any idiot gets a voice… He is Head of online marketing for a large company. People take it all way too seriously but of course people are real and have feelings that get hurt however i think how seriously they take it usually reflects the importance of social networking compared to real life and that balance should always be far in the favour of reality.

  3. Paula says:

    Good post Liz, and sorry to hear you’ve been so poorly. It’s very easy to become incredibly insular as we function is our online lives and, as you rightly say, most things are not about us. I think it’s very important to bear in mind that the virtual world is not a vacuum, it’s not a little box full of mini people just waiting to entertain us – the people there are as real as we are with equally demanding lives and stresses that affect them. The worst thing we can do is expect too much. I think the maxim "you only get out what you put in" holds true here – be good to people, show courtesy and respect and you’re likely (in most cases) to get it back. Operate from a position of arrogance, expecting others to fawn over you and bend to your will and you

  4. Natalie says:

    Jaysus, that’s a bit harsh of your friend. I know if I had bubble guts, texting and emailing is the last thing that would be on my mind. On the subject of the whole ‘I am not getting enough attention’ or ‘My status isn’t as big as it should be’ and la la la, I’m really surprised at just how far people’s egos are going in the parenting blogosphere. Don’t people read things back to themselves and then imagine what other people might think when they read it? As Paula said, I think people are placing very high expectations on people that are incredibly misplaced. The sheer arrogance and exaggeration from some is both mind blowing and actually rather entertaining, but at the same time very sad. I really think that it’s good to know who you are and your values and ensure some perspective and basically be yourself instead of looking for validation and attention. I hope you’re feeling much better! x

  5. PippaD says:

    It annoys me no end that people don’t understand that even though we live in their computer that we are actually real people with real lives. Yes I might be on and off Twitter all day so it looks like all I do is sit on a PC, but I do it when there is a natural break in play, or when someone is on the potty/toilet or… well you get the picture. I think that the other big problem at the minute is that people are letting the "fame" go to their heads. Yes PR’s have worked out that bloggers are a good market to look to and now if not everyone gets an invite to an event then the uninvited think it must mean they are out of favour instead of just not chosen this time. Now please excuse me but I am going to go and play with my son. And maybe I will blog about it later…

  6. Vic says:

    You are following me on twitter? Right? *runs off to check facebook too.

  7. Rosie Scribble says:

    Relieved you have written this, Liz, as I have been sitting here for four days waiting for you to reply to an earlier tweet and I have to admit I am a little hungry. I joke of of course. Very good post x

  8. JFB57 says:

    It is so silly isn’t it. We have lots of things in our lives but still we try to make our virtual world as important at times. We can misunderstand but forget that the other person is as busy with as many stresses. We need to remember that blogging is supposed to be a ‘community’! Glad you are feeling better!

  9. Expat Mum says:

    Funny, I was e-mailing another blogger this morning about the need of some to become "cyberstars". A bit like always wanting the bigger house, it’s all a bit sad and of course, means that such people are never satisfied.

  10. Naomi says:

    I feel a little guilty of this I must admit. I often wonder why I have not heard from someone when I tweet them but then I bring it back to why I have not been on twitter and realise that we all have busy lives, husbands, children and a ‘real’ life. Glad you are feeling better Liz.

  11. A Modern Mother says:

    I hate this aspect of blogging and think we should all get back to our roots. I’m way past the point of responding to every email — though I try I always miss someone. It’s like being at a wedding, and you know there is someone you need to say hello to or your mother will never forgive you.

  12. Deb says:

    I think part of the problem is that we’ve grown accustomed to people being instantly available thanks to tweets and texts. I didn’t know bloggers were feeling ignored & I’m surprised people would get upset at not being followed. Somehow people’s expectations seem to have risen considerably. Always helps, I find, to have really low expectations in most every aspect in life….


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