Don’t Like What You See? Fix It

Over the last little while I’ve seen numerous people complaining about how some social media tools are becoming “too mainstream” for their liking. For them, as more and more people join services like Facebook and Twitter, they lose their relevance and usefulness.

My response: Social media tools are opt-in, so if you don’t like what you see, fix it.

Recently, I mentioned that I wasn’t a fan of the high volume of automated Alltop tweets in Guy Kawasaki’s Twitter stream… so I don’t follow him. It’s nothing personal; just me controlling what I want to see in my stream. You can apply a similar principle across your social media toolkit. You don’t need to bail completely out of using these tools just because of the way people are using them.

  • If you don’t like the large number of new people signing up for Twitter, don’t follow them.
  • If your Twitter stream is too populated for your liking, cull it.
  • If you don’t want to connect to that long-lost high-school boyfriend/girlfriend on Facebook, don’t.
  • If someone’s blog has shifted focus and you no longer like it, don’t subscribe.

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t give feedback to others, or that other people should disregard that feedback. That’s still important.

It does mean that you have the power to control your online experience… so quit complaining and do it.

  • Amen. I’ll admit that I’m often one to complain about the dilution of certain social tools and networks on the web, but I’ve quickly learned that complaining isn’t going to get me anywhere: changing the way I use the tools to provide me value is.

  • People who complain about stuff like this annoy me almost as much as people who complain about their favorite garage band suddenly gaining popularity. The real reason they’re whining is that they no longer feel special because they have this nice little secret that only a minority knows about.

    Whatever.

    They should be happy about the incredible rise in social media participation by the masses for several reasons.

    1. It validates that they were indeed on the cutting edge of something interesting and valuable. How smart do they look for recognizing that earlier than most others?

    2. It means more brands will pay attention to social media, which these naysayers will hate when a company starts following them, but they’ll love when they complain about said company’s product and get prompt customer service.

    3. As you mentioned, no one makes you follow all the people rushing to get a Twitter account. Don’t follow them. You are in control of your Twitter experience. If you don’t like what you’re experiencing, fix it!

  • Well said.

  • In today’s high-tech world, you ought to know social networking sites inside and out. Not just know them, but know how to use them to benefit your client. Many people may feel uncomfortble with new technology they may not understand, and let’s face it, these sites can be confusing at times. I would encourage all people, especially those looking for a job in this tough economy, to utilize sites like Twitter and Facebook. These are some great tips for everybody to keep in mind. Thanks for sharing!

  • Grace

    Very well said indeed. I like it so much I’m going to tweet it!

  • Pingback: gracecic (Grace Gois-Ciccone)()

  • Pingback: Six Lessons From The Ghost Twittering Saga | davefleet.com()

  • I feel over following on Twitter and not denying requests on Facebook or LinkedIn stems from our innate desire to be liked/accepted. I bet if we dug into complaints about certain social media tools becoming “too mainstream,” the complainer would really be masking the fact that they can’t handle the idea that someone might unfollow them on Twitter or deny a FB/LI request from them.

  • Pingback: Higher Volume, Different Approach | davefleet.com()

  • Pingback: Forget The Statusphere. How About The Egosystem? | davefleet.com()