Saturday, February 14, 2009

What Are You Doing?

I was recently having a conversation with someone about the uses of Facebook, My Space, Twitter, and Plurk, and other social medium sites. There seem to be quite a few sites devoted to the sole purpose of telling your friends what you're doing and having them tell you the same. I understand, Facebook and My Space have other features, but one of the main uses is to tell others what you're up to. Are we really that interested in knowing when one of our friends goes to the store or is going to walk their dog? Or do we just assume everyone's lives are far more interesting than our own?

I don't know about other people, but I do know that I'm incredibly boring. I don't do interesting things that other people would want to know about. My day goes about the same most of the time, wake up, check earnings at eHow and Squidoo, check my email, start writing, try to eat a couple of times that day, and try to keep my computer working long enough to get something done. There's nothing there that is interesting enough to tell other people about. So, should I be signed up for and using these sites?

Since most people recommend marketing projects through these sites, I've been trying to visit them regularly, posting things several times a day. Not only that, but Squidoo and eHow both have an option to automatically update Twitter each time I work on my stuff and Squidoo does it for Facebook as well. I even created a module on My Squidoo Lens about My eHow Articles that updates automatically every time I use Twitter. For info on doing this check out my article I wrote Make a Twitter Feed of your eHow Articles at Squidoo

Each day I have a battle over posting on these sites though. Not because it's difficult, it's very intuitive, I just don't want to post only stuff that is basically advertisements. To play fair, I try and post interesting tidbits occasionally as well. Not only does this help me follow the letter of the rules at these sites, but it also makes it more likely I'll get fans or followers and actually reach someone with my articles and lenses. The problem comes when I try to figure out what else to post. I can never think of interesting things to post and I end up sitting and staring at the screen trying to come up with something. I usually end up writing something inane and dreading the next time I have to come up with a clever post.

Since I have such a hard time coming up with stuff to Tweet or Plurk, I wonder how other people do it. Are they really interesting people, or do they have this difficulty too? If they're really that fascinating, why are they posting all the time on these sites? It seems as though culture expects everyone to be consistently interesting and to have the time and energy to tell everyone about how interesting we are. I've gotten to the point where I'm just going to try and post whatever I can think of, no matter what it is.

Do you try to answer the question of "what are you doing" by posting on these sites? If so, do you have trouble coming up with posts?

If you want to check out my Twitter, Facebook, and other sites, just follow the links below, but a warning, don't expect my posts to be anything but boring :-)

My MySpace Page
My Facebook Page
My Plurk Page
My Twitter Page