Web 2.0: End

So, I’ve been thinking about quitting Facebook for a while. There. I said it.

There have been a few high-profile exits over the last year or so. And I’m on the waiting list for Diaspora (the new Facebook, not some suppository¬† in case that’s what you’re thinking). But then there was that high-profile ‘international quit Facebook day’ back in May, and no one really went through with it. And it got less coverage than ‘international talk like a pirate day’. And I’m left in inner-turmoil.

You see, I like the idea of joining a gym. I like the idea of being able to say, ‘oohh, hard day at work and I’m just off to the gym’. But then there’s the reality of it all: the fees, the holdall, the shiny trainers, being over-taken on a treadmill by a purple-rinse great grandmother. That kind of thing.

And it’s the same about quitting Facebook. I like the idea of getting more time to do stuff (think of all the extra cello practice I could do if I got my cello out every time I’d normally ‘pop on facebook’). I like the idea of saying, ‘oh yes, well I’m living in analogue again now’. But then I think I’d constantly be worrying about not being in the loop; about what I’m missing out on. It’s like being part of a gang at school – you don’t want to cut the worm in half and try to set fire to it with a magnifying glass from the science lab, but you’re scared you won’t be able to join in the conversation at the back of the class after lunch because you won’t be in on any of the jokes.

Then I look at my online life: My blog, my website, the quartet site, the quartet blog, the ensemble site, Twitter. I’m quietly proud of the fact I had a semi-blog (sounds rude, doesn’t it?) about life in my student flat back in 1997/98. That my quartet were one of the first groups of its type to embrace the web for work. I like to feel like a tech geek… but then I don’t have an Iphone. You see, I’m in turmoil again.

Lot’s of people have summed it up a lot better than me, like Daniel Sieberg here. And I don’t think I’m as bad as he thinks he became. I’m very selective about my friends. My tweets are locked and private. My Facebook Friends are nowhere near to triple figure because they’re all people who I interact with online and have met in person.

So, ladies and gentlemen, before I close the ‘book for good I’m going to try one last way. A third way, if you like. For the next few weeks (or until I completely fail at it), I’m going to try to promote interaction with my tweets and updates. The most obvious way is to phrase things in questions, inviting a response. I’m going to try to interact more on it – that way I won’t just be a part of the worm-chopping, I’ll be starting the conversations about it. And before you all call me a hypocrite because I have a blog – there’s a comment box down there. And I’ve been looking at ways of integrating the social elements into this for a while.

It’s my last-ditch attempt to make it work before it goes for good.

The Pope would like it. Probably. Sorry, just wanted to stay topical.

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