Thursday, November 1, 2012

Messages in a bottle

Social media is a like a message in a bottle. It's posted, written, created and then shared out into a sea of networked sites. Some messages get picked up and read, but I wonder how many are just out there bobbing around in the Internet? How many people have sent out a message that no one's read?

Is it useful to write something down that no one might read? Journals and diaries have been used by individuals for years to write about what is going on and how they feel about life and what they see around them. Journals and diaries weren't meant to be read by others, but they are written down by individuals anyway. The usefulness comes for the writer of the diary: it helps solidify ideas, make thoughts concrete and physically malleable.

When diaries are shared, it's an insight into something that is often very personal, but was never meant to be shared.

A message in a bottle is meant to be read. It's written with hopes that someone, somewhere will see it, find it and a connection is made. But the writer doesn't know who, where or when it will be read or if it's ever read.

Our social media messages in a bottle are meant to be shared. Many of them are as personal as a diary, but really, we tweet, blog, share status updates and locations because we want people to find us, know us and connect--even if the connection is asynchronous. We want to be "heard." To read a thought is to keep it alive.

Oh... and happy NaBloPoMo!

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