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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Social Media - A Change of Heart

I'm a relative newcomer to Social Media, and am trying to find my way through its use (my wife's been using Facebook for quite a while, and I've been hanging on her coattails!).

Rachelle Gardner's blog today touched this issue, and the comments have been fascinating. The initial question was whether it's made us more transparent than we'd really want to be, but the comments have gone far beyond that, and in their entirety form an excellent treatise on the values inherent in the Social Media's use.

For my part, reading them has caused a fundamental change in my outlook. I came to the subject thinking that Social Media is more a curse than a blessing, in that it provides a tempting outlet to create a false persona with a pseudo-intimacy that doesn't reflect who we are.

No longer. There are problems, certainly. But when this communication tool is used as it's intended to be used, it allows us to maintain connections that may otherwise have been lost, to share life experiences that may resonate with others, and ultimately to give us a sense of connectedness that is so important in a world that increasingly feels large, cold, and unfathomable.

For myself...well, I'm dealing with a chronic illness that affords the opportunity to experience more pain than I ever thought possible. Facebook, and the blogs that I follow, give me the opportunity to step outside myself. When it hurts too much to leave the house, I can still feel like I'm contributing something.

And that there are people out there who care.

What do you think? Have any of you changed your views of Social Media, pro or con?

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