Why Social Media Makes Me A Better Person 9 Comments

Written by Lauren Berger for The Talent Buzz blog post contest.

Over the course of the past week, I have read the following articles on social media:

  • “Virtual Friendship and the New Narcissism” by Christine Rosen
  • “Facebook, MySpace, and Social (Media) Diseases” by Robert X. Cringely
  • “How Twitter Can be Corrosive to Online Marketing” by Aaron Wall
  • “Facebook Entry Gets Office Worker Fired” by Chris Matyszczyk

The list of social media-bashing articles goes on… the darling of the geek chic set is being hit. It’s being hit by psychologists, parents, teachers, even the very bloggers that utilize the technology as they vent. The honeymoon had to end sometime, but I am never one to sit idly by and allow the things I love to be maligned. Facebook, I am in your corner – because you make me better.

I Stay Informed

The articles I mentioned above? I found them on Twitter. I also heard that Ed McMahon is in the hospital from @CNN, that Jason Brown has signed with the St. Louis Rams from @STLToday and George Lucas is going to produce a new film on Digg.com. I can have a water-cooler conversation about the economy, I can even tell you about the twice-convicted rapist that won a benefit lottery for “Standing Together Against Rape” – and I can find all of this information in less than five minutes, thanks to social media.

I Keep It Brief

I’m a writer – a lover of words. Brevity is not usually my thing. Thanks to Twitter, I now have a reason to keep the thoughts I share with the world to a minimum. A minimum of 140 characters, to be exact.

I Express Myself (Without Alienating Anyone In The Process)

Have you ever met that person, the one that constantly spews strange happenings and weird facts at you for no apparent reason? I used to be that person. Now, with the advent of blogging, I have an outlet in which to broadcast my inane thoughts to the world. I get type it up, post it and then… I can be done with it. People in my circle (or the few strangers that look at my stuff) can choose to read what I post or click on if it doesn’t appeal to them. I am sure my friends and family are grateful. I am just happy to avoid being on the receiving end of slack-jawed stares when I excitedly burst forth with a gem like, “The dot over a lowercase ‘i’ is called a tittle!” Catharsis, thy name is blog.

I Collaborate

I’ve been sitting on TweetDeck for the past hour or so and in that time, I have Retweeted two individuals. I have also responded to a request for PR assistance and posted a few facts of my own. On #followfriday, I help people build their networks. On Facebook, I pass along upcoming events and articles my friends have posted. I recommend local musicians on MySpace and cheerlead for local organizations on my blog. You see, social media is about collaboration, the sharing of an experience, an idea or a passion. This cycle of connection and perpetuation is beautiful.

I Expand My Social Circles (And Meet Some Really Amazing People)

I am a stalker. No, that wasn’t me outside your bedroom window last night. But if you are doing something I believe in, I have probably taken a few passes at your Facebook profile. I tell myself I do this in order to stay abreast of what people are up to and see how I can improve what I am doing. I REALLY do this in the hope that I will someday be able to come into contact with the people I admire. I have no fear of replying to someone’s post on Twitter, or friending someone I would like to know and starting a dialogue. I can make connections happen and have talked to, debated with and actually met some amazing people in the process. Just don’t tell anyone my secret. I would hate to have to stake out your Twitter page.

I Have More Time To Do The Things I Love

Last but not least, social media allows me more time. Like I said, I can find my news in a flash. I can catch up with my friends easily. I can create business opportunities for myself with the mere click of a button. I can learn new strategies for anything I am interested in, from those that are in the know. I am less stressed, I smile more and I certainly have more time. Granted, I am probably using that extra time to play around with my Twitter account, but that is neither here nor there.

I know that social media has its dark and ugly side. I have the carpal tunnel syndrome and pasty pale skin to prove it. But anything that can bring about such a revolution in the way the world views and disseminates information can’t be all bad. Critics, take note: social media is here to stay. And your public is that much smarter, savvier and connected because of it.

About Jason Buss

Talent HQ’s creator and editor is Recruiting & Diversity Leader, Jason Buss. Talent HQ is a premier online news and information channel for the Recruiting and Human Resources community.

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  • Posted on: Monday, March 2nd, 2009