The phrase itself-- social media—must be awfully intimidating for people who are not very social.
You might say, Yeah, what is their problem? And the answer would be: Nothing.
According to a surprisingly popular video, one out of three and maybe even one out of two people consider themselves to be introverts. Even though They Walk Among Us in great profusion, they’re much maligned.
It seems almost inarguable to suggest that in a world where social media is so important, some introverts feel alienated. How many friends you have is now a knowable thing and you’re kind of graded on that; how many people “like” your comments say something about your ability to fit in, too.
That’s not to say being an introvert makes a person impossible to like or befriend. But it would seem if you are introverted, you are less likely to be asking people to officially be your friend, or that you would either share favorite videos or receive many. Do advertisers that dwell too comfortably, too smugly, in the social media scene, repulse those who just, literally, don’t want to go there?
In the last week, over a million people have watched “The Power of the Introvert, Pt. 1” on YouTube. Two things: 1) That’s not an enormous amount. Except. 2) It is in just a week’s time, and when you consider that YouTube is all about building or discovering communities, it is unlikely introverts would be roaming YouTube trying to find something that “talks” to them quite that way.
This video is based on the book, Quiet: The Power of Introrversion by Susan Cain, who caused more than a ripple of interest when she spoke at the TED conference earlier this year. That talk alone, also on YouTube, has grabbed over 3.3 million views.
Also taken together with all the other recent introvert-related material on YouTube and elsewhere, a lot of it by or about Cain, it’s fair to conclude introverts might want to be counted, but not conspicuously.
“We see ourselves as a nation of extroverts,” says the voiceover in “The Power of Introverts. Pt. 1.” which tells its story in a series of simple drawings “drawn” as the video plays.
Both the voice and the art are done by David Widfeldt Lomas, and the narration notes that to many in society being an introvert is now a “second-class personality trait” seen as something between a “a disappointment and a disease.” To be an introvert is to be seen as “boring, slow, lazy, stupid.”
The first two viewer comments on YouTube about “The Power of Introverts Pt 1” say a lot to me: Here’s the first: “Ah! I want all of my friends to watch this video because they just don't UNDERSTAND. It's hard to be an introvert in an extrovert world. Let's keep the independence, introverts!”
The second commenter sounds as if, maybe he/she is in the biz?
“I see this as an attempt to divide that is ultimately motivated by the desire to SELL. I'm speaking as a quote unquote shy introvert. I'm there. I don't, however, like the us-against-them rhetoric here. Of course we've envied those for whom life seems so easy. SEEMS. How rich is your experience? How self aware are you? Do you truly love yourself? Ask that of anyone, and, barring the pitifully ignorant, you'll find that it is the same journey for all of us period.”
Interesting stuff. Perhaps there’s something to this quiet introspection idea? Would you like to say something about that?