Friday, July 17, 2009

I am only sort of social

I get a lot of people who meet me in one aspect of social media and then decide to include me in ALL aspects of social media. And then I am faced with the delema of whether or not I want hundreds of thousands of people knowing how I look in a Santa Claus outfit.


Let's go through the sites I am a member of one by one:

Twitter (

Twitter is a great place to chat with people and share ideas, events, news, philosophy, etc. If you have a food or wine bend to your profile or if you engage me in discussion, yes I will follow you. I would prefer if you would follow me as well, but for the most part I do not care. I am there to talk to people who like to talk about wine.

I do NOT want a direct message after following you, especially if you are not following me and will not allow me to send a direct message back to you. In fact, there is not much that pisses me off more in the realm of Twitter. I also am not going to pay any attention to you if all I see coming from you are links to your blog/store website/promotional event/press release. I will not click on your link and I will not retweet it so that others can see it. On the other hand, if you and I have had some discussions previously about the topic and then you send me your blog post regarding the topic via Twitter, then yes, I will most likely pass it on for others to see.

That being said, come talk to me! I almost always respond and I really, truly, absolutely love striking up conversations with people I do not know. You never know where they might lead you.

LinkedIn (

I work for a living. Not too profound a statement, but it is true. As such, you can find me on LinkedIn. If you are in the same business I am, I will happily add you to my network. In fact, I probably will even if you are marginally in the same business I am. Business connections can become invaluable when you or someone you know is looking for information or opportunities. Especially in the current job market, it just does not make sense to limit the number of people you are connected to. Sometimes I need vendors, sometimes I need consultants, sometimes I need... who knows what I will need. But that is the point. You never know where life will take you and it only pays to network.

OpenWine Consortium (

Yes, I am there, but I am not really there, because there is no there there. You can find me, you can friend me, you can message me, you can comment on me, and you can read my blog there. But I am NEVER there. Why? Because I get all of the social networking interaction I need from other places. That is not to say that I do not think the OpenWine Consortium is not valuable. I just find other places to do my interactions. Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn being the main ones.

MySpace (

I do not use it. I do not want to use it. The only reason I am posting the link is to see how many people actually go to it. And try and be my friend. I will never speak to those people ever again, ever...

Facebook (

Before you go and click on the above link, I want you to think about what you are doing. This isreally the crux of what I wanted to talk about, and I really believe that this is somewhat of a generational issue.

Five years ago, you could not find an 'adult' on facebook. Everyone was in college and highschool. Then facebook opened itself up to the world and the at first the world shrugged. Now it is THE place to be, advertisers, marketers, promoters all want to be there and want to be my friend. But so many have jumped in without really understanding what Facebook is, and signed on and have begun to "friend" everyone in sight, and then spamming them with everything under the sun. Now I see everything as someone advertising to me, and I ignore more than I've ever ignored. And I was a really lazy teenager...

Then there is the personal side. There is a lot of me on Facebook. I use it all the time and I update it regularly. I go there to see what my friends are doing. I go there to post photos and events and generally interact with people I like.

It has become common practice for people I meet on Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. to then friend me on Facebook. And it makes sense. Everyone wants to be able to have their stuff in front of me. That's ok, I get it. However, please understand if I do not give you access to some of the slightly more personal information in my life, such as what I did while in a fraternity at school (I was a Chi Phi by the way). I will definitely not add you as a friend until I meet you face-to-face, and even then I give no assurance that I will let you be my "friend."

Silly, perhaps, but I have found that each of these social communities gives different levels of personal insight. Facebook is as personal as it gets without being someone I do drinks with on a regular basis.

Speaking of which, its time for a drink...

I am really interested in making a new contact and getting to know someone new. Just realize that just because I converse with you in 140 characters at a time does not mean that I will then all you to see more.
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