I’m not huge on New Years resolutions (I always forget to cancel the gym membership the following summer). But I do typically take some time off at the end of the year. During that time I try to be a little introspective about what has worked well in the past year and what needs improvement. One of the things that jumped out at me this year is that social media, at least in my life, has evolved from necessary evil to outright evil.
I’ve always had a contentious relationship with social media platforms. But on the whole I saw them as a net positive for society. People were able to share and communicate more easily. That tends to lead to progress, which I wish we had more of in my country and on our planet. The marketing and indoctrination that comes with those didn’t seem to be too far beyond the fringes. There are always people who are looking to become sheep for people who want to do them harm. Social media makes that easier. But that situation has existed since before written language. The increased velocity of it was something I’d made my peace with.
Then came the 21st century robber barons like Zuckerberg and Musk and their polarization of social media. Yeah. Fuck that. Evil people are one thing. But when the creators of the system put their thumbs on the balance to push people one way or another, I’m not OK with that.
But I don’t want to wholly forego social media. There are still the sharing aspects of it that I enjoy. But I’m going to be more selective in how I use it, with the primary goal being to be exposed to less of the nasty and more of the postive aspects of the various platforms. Kelsey Hightower came through with the idea that I’m going to steal.
Next year I'm going to invest in a personal website where I plan to post my thoughts and treat it as the source of truth. I'll then republish to other platforms when it makes sense.— Kelsey Hightower (@kelseyhightower) December 18, 2022
So in 2023 I’m going to go back to creating more content and doing less doom scrolling. At least that’s the hope. I have a few drafts in the hopper already. So things are looking up.