What would Hunter think?

Posted: July 3, 2011 in Social Media

The Needle

Fear and Loathing in Social Media

With the outright glut of Social Media out there I feel it’s time to add my take as a beginning to my leap into the Blogosphere. The Wiki definition for it is: The blogosphere is made up of all blogs and their interconnections. “Interconnection” in my case is Social Media and the effect it has on Societies Worldwide for good or ill. I was amusing myself as usual yesterday and it came to me as a question: “What would Hunter S. Thompson think”? I believe that HST would buy the ticket and take the ride as it were. He would fear it and loathe it; but he would ride it for all it’s worth. I intend to do the same.

I was pressured into social media by my Family; my Wife and a handful of “real” friends. Real friends in that they were people I knew prior to my leap into the Thing. I am WEB based and very at home here. My window to the World is my screen; I’ve seen much of it in person but the web allows me to “follow-up” on my travels. I can use on-line satellite photos to see it as it is now not the 1980’s. I get my news via the web as my local paper is only published once a week here in the Hills of Kentucky. THAT drives me nuts; 10 pages of nothing but rural stuff that does not go much further than the Capital. The World News desk must be a huge bummer; but from what I see much of it is carved from the web.

Social media I fear and loathe for many reasons now looking back on it. We all have seen good side of social media. It allows us a way to be in touch and in tune with each other. As we add “friends” the word should really be associates. My idea of a friend is much deeper than what Facebook sees it. I will be using Facebook as my example because I started there. IT defined what I think of social media as of today. As I said I started with a handful of “peeps” and limited but decent understanding of the lingo. I thought WOW awesome real-time interaction at it’s best! Say what’s on your mind and post it; these real friends like it; ignore it or hell even grace me with a comment. The web had evolved for me. I was certain that this Beast had just risen to its feet and began speaking.

I typed and I waited for something profound to happen. Nothing happened. Was my Family not listening? Were my real friends daft? I became so bored with Facebook I began playing the Zynga games there. I played Mafia Wars while waiting for my chance to respond to something. Then; I found it was impossible to play without more friends; hence “connecting the World through games”. So; since my handful of peeps was not near enough I began to reach out for players of this game. Easy right? Not so much; you have to be branded as a “Daily Player” to get more “friends” to play this damn game. My experience with games was that there is a finality to it. A winner. But this game is about winning without a winner? I took the brand and became that player and went PRO just like Hunter would have done had he been suckered into it. I went from 35 friends to 300 after my first “pimp” it’s that process sells you and your gibberish to other daily players. 300 became 500 and when I realized WTF (what the fuck) was I doing? I had 2,500 people who I had to appease in some way every single day. This was becoming a job.

Sure I had group of good people at the core that were really fun to interact with. At my reckoning I would see posts from folks I didn’t even remember having accepted as my friend. Then the game changed; it was all but forcing you to spend money on it to stay “strong” and the items you needed to be strong become an obsession. Com’on you’ve seen the Facebook needle in people’s pics right? Addiction is the running  joke. It’s no joke. 2 things defined you: 1 Loot and 2 Skills. Loot was like Dungeons and Dragons attack points and defense points per item. Skills were points given to you for leveling to your next goal. It was your skills and loot vs. the opponent you fought. It even made some (myself included) to create NEW account or accounts to make a stronger player. It became a real fight for most. It became dishonest and disgusting. It became hack attempts to steal your credit card info for mafia stuff or Texas Hold’em Poker (ask my Wife). It became fake profiles with my Step Daughters stolen photos. It got weird; very weird. So I made yet another profile back to square 1 those boring peeps and Family and silence from the drone of “add me’s” and depressed status posts about this or that. I gave away my account in the end because it just made no sense to me anymore. I still have my boring little existence there; for what I am not sure.

Again it bored the hell out of me; I still thought there was more to it. IT being social media. That took me to Twitter and I am currently enjoying my experience. Yes; I have had 2 creepy “followers” that are porn promoters of some sort and why I am followed by them is a puzzle to me. I “follow” my passions Space Travel, Motor Sports, Science and Cycling. I have no distractions presented by useless games that require help from creeps and cheaters.

I can see Hunter at his chair screaming at the screen! I can see him shoot the goddamn thing; hell I wanted to. I can see one of my heroes consumed by the story and all it became until the end. In my true fashion when the going got weird I went pro.

  1. barry says:

    Dead on brother… Zynga has brilliantly been the pied piper to millions.

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