What is Social Media?
Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, WordPress, Twitter, Google hangouts, LinkedIn, You Tube, Bandcamp, Vimeo, Soundcloud, Goodreads, Vine etcetera etcetera.
It’s a generic term for the staging areas where we gather to share music, news, gossip and madnesses.
The dreaded Facebook is up first. Farce book. Face ache. It’s very annoying but really useful.
What do we do on Facebook?
We make friends around the world. We look at their photos. We like their photos or their status updates. We click the like button, the heart button or the angry button. These are found by hovering over the comments box at the bottom of each post.
We post photos, news, insights, book or music reviews.
We join clubs and groups. I belong to several gardening groups and groups about snowdrops.
We like and share, like and share. I like and share photos of snowdrops. I comment on various types of snowdrop. I like the people who collect different types of snowdrop bulb from all over the world. They’re interesting. To me, they are interesting, you might find this intensely boring, but I happen to like gardening. Sometimes, in January I like to sit down at the kitchen table with a cuppa and my snowdrop group and chat to them about their flowers. Yes, I could go to the pub or church or book group, but I like different types of conversations.
I like religion and spirituality in all forms. it interests me. Have you tried to have an open debate lately about religion, with anyone you actually know?
I joined the Bah’ai’s, the shamans, the muslims, the sunni’s, the buddhists and of course the atheists, for balance. I talk to them all the time. I learn from them all the time.
I joined yoga groups on Facebook. I don’t do yoga, except on Facebook. If I see a pretty picture with a description of how a certain exercise is done, I try it, for a moment.
I follow topics, people, activities, groups just for a moment and then I unfollow them again. I have no loyalty to the snowdrop bulb collectors. I come into their group and go again, as I please. It suits me.
I joined local history groups in many different locations. Also the free ads, the recycling, the local news sites and book review groups.
I can spend a week on line, chatting, learning, broadening my knowledge of the world and pretending to practice yoga. It’s great.
Twitter is for the sharper mind. It’s for the quick-quip flash of insight, make you sit up and think types. I’m not great at Twitter, but I know how it works.
The same principle of liking and sharing but with different buttons and a different platform. That means, different set of rules, a different staging area. A completely different arena.
First of all, your name does not have to e your name. In fact, your name should be something funny or thought provoking or related to your business. Even better, your name should be something really quite clever.
Mine is @orlabroderick. Not very original, but effective.
I gather writers, political activists and empaths from all over the world. I am slowly gathering a collection of folk I genuinely admire and have mainly never met.
There are rules. You are only allowed to write 140 characters. About 3 sentences. You have to get your point across to your twitter world, in just a few words. It’s a challenge but a fun game. You have to make your brain work.
How I use Twitter. Like millions of others, I have stopped buying a Sunday, or any day, newspaper. I feel that the journalism is often poor, lacking in balance and biased. I want more, basically. I want more insight, more voice, more grass roots honesty than a bunch of clever people chatting about an abstract. I read blogs.
I look down my feed for news and interesting things. People have their own blog or websites and they write what they know. I follow folk who are passionate about nature, the natural world and kindness. When they tweet, with a link and a description of that link and it sounds ok, I click on that link. Generally, it’s an article either written by themselves or someone they know. or a topic of common interest. Something they think is news worthy and worth a discussion.
Blog: an article about something. A column. An insight.
I like the ones that remind me of old fashioned insightful journalism before everyone was so worried about being politically correct.
I read blogs. from all over the world. About everything. Instead of newspapers. I write blogs. people read my blogs, they share my blogs, they re-tweet my blogs.
I read blogs from the Pirate Party in Iceland. from the women in war zones, from the Native Americans in Dakota, from the volunteers in Calais, from those stuck in Aleppo. I have actually been following the same Calais volunteers, across the social media platforms, for well over a year. That is a privilege. I have been friends with the leader of the Pirate Party, on Facebook, Twitter etc – for over 5 years!
Here’s the very best example I can give you of exactly why the internet, and social media, in particular needs you lot.
I befriended some native Native Americans about a year ago. I had read an article – BLOG – about their lack of water and the way the federal government of America was treating them. I have read their accounts of the myriad ways in which they have suffered at the hands of the powers that be in America. Google #NoDAPL and start reading. Search the internet for Standing Rock, North Dakota. Research this one topic and understand that our media allows us a fraction of current world news.
I also befriended the likes of Jim Hunter and Lesley Riddoch here in Scotland. I got clued up on land reform here in Scotland quite a few years ago. I read the blogs about the land grabs across Scotland. I read the stories of those here who cannot fish their rivers, farm their land, build or buy homes. I am up to date about Scotland’s battles over the places where oil is found and who wants to own it.
I began likening our land struggle to the plight of the Natives in America. In an age where we can print solar panels from 3D printers, why are we even considering laying oil pipelines?
Over in Dakota, the grandmothers’ opinions, insights and stories are being videos and uploaded to you tube and Facebook. Where are our Grandmothers in Scotland? Why are you all so silent? We also need to hear from you. Your voices are missing. Have you heard of the Dakota Access Pipeline and why millions of people from all over the world are taking to social media to support its demise?
Social media in Scotland, especially the Highlands, lacks a generational history of our culture.
There are free courses in UHI and many council offices, education centres and the like all over the country. People like me will teach you, in private.
The time has come for the older, educated woman of Scotland to make her voice heard on line.
If you think I can help you, contact me. I charge £15 per hour and I estimate it takes 8-10 hours to get you Facebooking and Tweeting your blogs with ease.