Ten Things I Dislike About Social Media

As a follow-up to last week's post, here are ten things I dislike about social media, in no particular order.

1. That somehow social media seems to have granted a license for some people to get really pissy. (Yes, that occasionally includes yours truly.) The keyboard and monitor create just enough of a barrier for us to forget that there are humans on the other end. Where's Emily Post when you need her?

2. That it's a lot harder to make a business out of blogging than you think.

3. That too many people are clogging Twitter's trending topics, in lame attempts to get attention.

4. That too many blogs require registering in order to comment. Let's break barriers down instead of building them up, and find other ways to get that information.

5. That many of us are hopeless slaves to social networking fashion, flitting from one hot service to another, like Carrie Bradshaw always on the hunt for a new pair of Manolos.

6. That Twitter doesn't have a nice, succinct "elevator pitch" so that everyone could understand how it works quickly and easily.

7. That (some) PR people are using social media as a new way to stalk their prey.

8. That you have to create a new email account every time you want to open a new Twitter account.

9. That Facebook's navigation still is a lot more convoluted than it needs to be.

10. That social media is just as good at spreading irresponsible rumors as it is the facts.

Just like last week, feel free to add your own. See you live next week, when I'm back from vacation.

24 comments about "Ten Things I Dislike About Social Media ".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Ben White from Bite Communications, August 26, 2009 at 2:32 p.m.

    I agree with some of these but I find it interesting that you state that we should be breaking down barriers on blog comments when infact you have to do so on this one.

    In any case, I find the arguement that goes against this philosophy interesting, which is currently being made by others such as Paul Carr and Sarah Lacy, at TechCrunch. They suggest that by ensuring people log on to make comments, it will help to reduce the amount of malicious and ill-infomed comments from trolls and in turn lead to a more enjoyable conversation for all those that want to contribute for the right reasons.

    I have to say that I kind of agree with this, even if it does go someway against the ethos of blogging and it will be interesting to see what happens when TechCrunch implements its month long trial period forcing its readers to do exactly that.

  2. Reuben Segelbaum from Syncapse, August 26, 2009 at 2:35 p.m.

    Wow....point number ten hits directly home. How much damage can be done before the facts are verified? As for the pissy factor...well, we all know that how one reads a comment in an email may be taken the wrong way, but a rant is still a rant. The interesting thing that comes from the rants, however, are the number of views and comments that can be generated, which of course lends to the question of what is the ultimate goal.

  3. Stacy OConnell, August 26, 2009 at 2:40 p.m.

    I don't like to log in before commenting on a blog either, but it does keep my comments less catty than if I did it anonymously. There. I admitted it. I can be catty. ;-)

  4. Thorsten Rhode from marqueteer, August 26, 2009 at 2:41 p.m.

    11. That most companies blatantly disregard the 'social' in Social Media.


  5. Hank Blank from Blank and Associates, August 26, 2009 at 2:43 p.m.

    Face time not Facebook leads to relationships.

    Too many people hide behind the computer and don't meet connect in person.

    Building a network of strangers is not as important as building a network of personal connections and friends.

    Hank Blank

  6. Carissa Gingras from scheibel halaska, August 26, 2009 at 3:03 p.m.

    12. That the abbreviated reference for Social Media is "SocMe", which as an Account Director at a B2B marketing communications firm, is pretty much the way I am feeling when clients say they want to put all their marketing dollars into Social Media. There is little disregard these days for strategy, and far too much regard for socialization.

  7. Elke Martin from Brandware Public Relations, August 26, 2009 at 3:12 p.m.

    There it is again, the old "stalking the prey" analogy. The beauty of social media is that you opt to engage - yes, we've started relationships with media via Twitter, but only when they've chosen to direct-message us to inquire about a product loan or to get other info about the clients we're talking about. So applying Ms. Taylor's observation, who's stalking whom here? The freedom to choose your friends and followers is what we like about social media.

  8. Betsy Kent from Be Visible Associates, August 26, 2009 at 3:13 p.m.

    I agree with your points. I recently sent a request to the marketing people in some of the groups I belong to on LinkedIn; I wanted to hear how they describe Twitter. I got some good (not great) responses (See #6 above), but I also received some really angry responses, some with expletives I can't repeat. I don't like the idea that Social Media is a marketing war with the for's and the against's battling each other. I totally understand the fear of the unknown, but I am flabbergasted that there are marketing people out there who are not even willing to try to embrace it.

  9. Howie Goldfarb from Blue Star Strategic Marketing, August 26, 2009 at 3:20 p.m.

    There are lots of issues with social media. Clutter and ease of use being my prime complaints. And as much as the data these businesses have access to I truly feel they are not the right forum or technology for advertising. But the flip side is they can also be devastating to businesses from viral negativity. So they do have to be monitored.

    The good thing about social media is creative destruction. In 5 years Facebook will be number 3 or 4. In 10 years Twitter will be something we talk about as a neat technology we 'used to enjoy using'.

    Remember when Instant Messaging was the next big thing and every web company created one? Did IMing ever turn into a revenue generator? nope.

  10. Duncan jb Horner from Qualvu, August 26, 2009 at 3:24 p.m.

    I agree with your points and I also think it's interesting how we are becoming more reliant on text-based alter-egos to generate consumer insights. I mean just like a profile picture tells lies on how somebody really looks, how reliable can people's random comments seriously be taken when we're trying to conclude about their consumption/lifestyle habits?

    That's why we need video. Afterall, isn't 80% of how we communicate supposed to be body-language? Sorry, the emoticons just don't do it!

  11. Bill Ye from Yohagan, August 26, 2009 at 3:39 p.m.

    3. That too many people are clogging Twitter's trending topics, in lame attempts to get attention.

    Agree with much of this article - very much agree with #3. It's like a 4th grade history bee where someone who didn't know the answer decided to comment on someone elses response in order to 'add'. no need to add unless it's needed. no need to value add unless it's a value. Else, you're just clouding the conversation. just communicate.

  12. Marla Lepore from Marla Ink Productions, August 26, 2009 at 4:29 p.m.

    Couldn't agree more with #6 - not just the "how" to use Twitter, but also the "why." Although maybe if the "how" was easier, the "why" would be more readily apparent. Twitter is what you make of it, and it's hard for people to see its value until they really start actively using it.

  13. Heidi Moon, August 26, 2009 at 4:59 p.m.

    #13. That you can only use your cell phone with one Twitter account at a time. (I don't know if Twitter has any way to track this, but I suspect users with multiple accounts is not so rare, and increasing.)

  14. Liza Hausman, August 26, 2009 at 5:08 p.m.

    Solid list, but I disagree with point 4 - the fact is logging in with a real identity is what keeps more people from falling victim to item #1 on your list and regretting it.

  15. Swag Valance from Trash, Inc., August 26, 2009 at 5:32 p.m.

    11. Social media that lowers the bar to publishing simultaneously lowers the signal-to-noise ratio.

    With television, it used to be that a TV camera pointed at the public suddenly became the "idiot magnet". With tools that require less and less thinking to post something, social media has become the new idiot magnet.

  16. Michael Senno from New York University, August 26, 2009 at 10:35 p.m.

    Twitter's revenue plan needs an elevator pitch...if you need one for what its service does, that's a problem.

  17. Joe Buhler from buhlerworks, August 26, 2009 at 11:04 p.m.

    Social Media has exposed the fact that common sense doesn't seem to as common as we suspected. Neither seems to be authenticity. Both are essential for successful participation. It's not just another tool for old fashioned broadcasting, PR pitching and advertising.

  18. Diane Dzurochak from NONE, August 26, 2009 at 11:24 p.m.

    FABULOUS list. Agree with all 10, 100%. I REFUSE to do Facebook -- totally invasive, and just try getting removed from their list/site. Twitter is losing its glamour with all the "I have 1000+ followers!" people. And what is with the celebs posting every 5 minutes? Ego or not enough to do? I refuse to embrace social media as the next best thing until I can see it change my life. It is another tech distraction from what is important (which we're all trying desperately to forget).

  19. David Thurman from Aussie Rescue of Illinois, August 27, 2009 at 8:27 a.m.

    I love Twitter. I donate my time to Australian Shepherd rescue. We had an Aussie in need in Georgia, I posted the call for help, in 30 minutes we found an adopter in Canada. In the right hands and channel, social media has power.

  20. Carolyn Stephens from Jerolyn Enterprises, LLC, August 27, 2009 at 11 a.m.

    I appreciate all of these "pet peeves" but especially #4 which is my #1 personal annoyance.

  21. Angela Wilson from Angela Wilson Communications, August 27, 2009 at 11:32 a.m.

    #11 Falling into the cyberhole and losing several hours before I realize it.

    #12 Dealing with the fear generated by the "MySpace is evil" mantra, which still exists at businesses and nonprofits today.

    #13 Having to hold in angry retorts at idiots who join a conversation just to annoy and curse - especially in politics.

    #14 Those spam Tweeters who constantly send you Tweets about finding the top 10 Internet providers. (I now block each one and RT for others to block as well.)

    #15 All the Twitter marketing Web sites that "teach" businesses to advertising on the network - and constantly Tweet about their services.

  22. Sarah Brasfield from Initiative, August 28, 2009 at 11:33 a.m.

    I'm surprised that no one has commented on irony of calling it "social" media. All technology has it's place but is further isolating individuals from participating in society and having a fully engaged life with actual people. Get outside. Smile at the person you pass on the sidewalk. Sit quietly with your own thoughts for a few minutes.

  23. Cathy Taylor from MediaPost, September 2, 2009 at 3:36 p.m.

    Wow, guys. Very impressed by all these comments now that I'm back. Thanks all.


  24. Jonathan Engelsma from Grand Valley State University, September 12, 2009 at 8:20 a.m.

    Interesting article. The irony is I had to register in order to post this comment...

Next story loading loading..