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Random Thought for Friday, June 3rd, 2016: Modern Age Anti-Social is a Good Thing

IMG_20140505_085058Welcome to Friday’s Random Thought.

I’ll come out and say it.  I am becoming an anti-social person online.  Yup, I would be happier reading books and stuff on the Internet. I wasn’t always like this.  Back in my BBS days, yes I am showing my age here, I would spent hour upon hours writing and replying for forums posts. Sending email and what not. I tell ya, if Reddit was around 25 years ago, I would have been one of its more active users. Nowadays I just don’t seem to have the drive to participate.

It’s not that I am getting older or technology is overwhelming.  Far from it, I’m a techie at my core, it’s just when it comes to social networks, it’s just it’s too much. Every time you turn around there is another ‘social network’ looking for people to participate. I am overwhelmed with the amount of social interaction that these various networks produce. If you are active on all these social networks, you loose time that could be better spent with family, time working on that next story or book. You end up spending all your time saying the same thing over and over again on all these networks.

Human beings were not meant to spend all their time repeating themselves to ‘share’ something.

I think the photo with a witty quote thing has run it’s course but just like Hollywood, remakes and reboots will continue. That’s what is really bugging me.  How many times do we need to remake Spiderman? Batman? Seriously, can we just move onto something original? It can work you know. Look at the book and film The Martian. It performed well for two major reasons. Firstly, it was an awesome story. Second, it was something new and original.

Telling us the origin story of how a radioactive spider changes a young man forever 5 different times cheapens the story and frankly, kills the character. I guess I wouldn’t be as cynical of remakes and reboots if they were actually good.  True, the Star Trek reboot is really well done as was The Thomas Crown Affair, but these are gems floating upon a sea of….well…shit.

Social networks are filled with meme spam trying to capture and convey ‘a moment of profound coolness’. Everyone wants to be the popular person sharing ‘that cool thing’. The result is this trivial content that just fills our social network streams each day and with soo many people ‘liking’ this tripe, my streams miss out on the stuff I want to see from my friends. We as a people need to stop trying so hard to create ‘cool’ moments in our lives.  When you stop trying so hard, that’s when you see those moments. We as a species are really begging to miss out here. When my son first answered my question about needing to use the bathroom with the response, “No, poop is sleeping”, I didn’t need a meme to make me feel special.  I was able to enjoy the moment with him and laugh and he giggled.

So I am becoming something of a ‘lurker’. For those of you who do not know about this early BBS forums term, a lurker is someone who reads a lot and rarely posts anything. Normally when they do post, it’s worthwhile but for the most part, they just watch and listen. Sounds a bit creepy, I know, but when the discussion on all these social networks is just not worthwhile to me, I don’t feel compelled to engage.

You know the old saying, don’t have something good to say, then be quiet? Well, it’s more true today than ever and honestly I am missing engaging and worthwhile discussion. I am tired of marketing fluff and click bait, I really am.

In the 1990’s, it was all about putting ads into people’s email inboxes.  Spam was born and has yet to die the much overdue death that is due.  I don’t need those ads that keep showing up about medical genital augmentation from a single pill. Seriously, enough of that stupid stuff. Now it is all about click bait. For those of you who do click on the bait and tell everyone what is going on in the comments stream, Humanity thanks you. Seriously, you are helping to kill that worthless style of marketing garbage, please do keep it up.

As a child of the beginnings of the Internet I am disgusted by what it has become. Marketing, analytics, big data.  It’s all about getting us to make that ‘impulse’ buy for something that no one really needs.  I’m one of those weird people where is there is something aside from food and shelter that I really need, I watch for it to go on sale and then buy it.  I’m the guy that does Christmas shopping all year long, looking for those deals and things that my family and friends would like or need.

I like to plan ahead for many reasons. Saving money and avoiding crowds during the Christmas shopping rush. So while all of you are out there adding to the “Best of Walmart Door Busters Brawls 5” video series, I’ll be at home with my wife, playing with my son.

HAPPY FRIDAY EVERYONE!

Published inFriday's Random ThoughtHumor

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