I’m seeing this all over instagram by popular celebs that they are on a “social media break”. I understand that being on social media as a celebrity can be overwhelming. Even for me, a little no name blogger and group moderator – and now let’s add gamer to the list of things I do – it can be overwhelming.
Facebook at first was challenging for me. I was part of an alternative community when Facebook started back in 2007. I had been in the community for almost a decade and was not interested in leaving it. But when Facebook became popular, my family wanted to add me on there too. It became a real problem on how to mix a very conservative family online with a very alternative and “out there” community?
I had to make some cuts somewhere. And in the end, I wound up walking away from that alternative community back in 2009. It wasn’t because of social media though. The drama all around from being in the public eye was just too much. Mix that in with family drama who didn’t quite get my choices – I couldn’t cope with it all. Add a bad breakup that was very public to the mix. And well…
So, I wound up walking away from that part of my life and I haven’t really looked back. This is quite vague I know. But I think alternative is a pretty loose word that doesn’t give much away. Let’s just say, that life is pretty quiet now and has been for the last decade.
I did keep in touch with a few friends from that crowd. But very minimal. The ones who knew what being professional meant and didn’t cross the lines when meeting my family outside community events. Or colleagues from work who insisted on adding me to Facebook.
Living the dream
Back in those days, I was a very different person compared to who I am now. I wanted to be in the public eye. I was at hall parties on the weekends. I volunteered at community events. “Can I take your coat please?” – yes, that was me. I loved being part of the action. From Sunday lunches, to Friday night dancing with the gay men at Woody’s on Saturday night. That was me. I loved to party and couldn’t get enough of it. Social media came along – and that seemed to ruin a lot of the fun.
When it comes to posting on social media, personal information is available with just one click of the button. Before Facebook, we used MSN messenger to post our status updates. And I remember even then, the status updates could cause so much drama! I’d get angry phone calls or messages demanding to know what “well, last night was a bust” meant.
We didn’t have the means to share views publicly about politics or things that really get people angry. Except for very small IRC chat rooms on yahoo and alternative websites. Before they made all the sites “pay to use.” Then came the dawning of social media.
The good and bad about social media
I’ve had a love-hate relationship with social media over the years. It’s a great way to stay connected with friends I’ve met in my travels or family that still live in Denmark. I love seeing pictures of my nieces and nephews as they grow up and turn into beautiful young adults. I love having a way to connect with fans that listen to my music and love my artwork.
But with the good, comes the bad.
Social media break up – it’s you, not me.
I deleted my Facebook page that had 10K followers earlier this year in a huff. I hadn’t used the page in a while and logged in – there were 50 notifications reminding me I hadn’t posted to it! When I checked on the last few posts I had made about art and music, there was zero engagement from fans. And only about 35 people had seen each post. 35 people out of 10K? There is something seriously wrong with that scenario. So, poof went Facebook.
I’m seriously debating on whether or not I should delete my Twitter account too. I just can’t with the cancel culture. Every day, there’s someone we should boycott or cancel because of something someone said on the mega social media platform.
The cancel culture
“If you don’t cancel his/her show, we’re going to cancel the network!” it was outcries like this – that had celebs like Kevin Hart fired from hosting the Oscars. Now I hear the Oscars will no longer have a host since Gervais is leaving. Thanks Twitter. You ruined that for us now too. You ruined the Oscars!
“We’re going to cancel Rogers because you support Don Cherry!” they cried out just before Christmas. Sure, Don Cherry was in the wrong with what he said. But the point is.
We now live in a world where people can lose their entire career over a 150 character thought.
It’s scary, isn’t it? I mean, that’s fucking scary. Every blogger and person that uses social media should take that as a sobering thought.
It’s why many authors and bloggers use pen names. It’s why I don’t sign my posts with my real name. It’s why I don’t even post that much music unless I have something really good to share.
Because a simple post with 150 characters or less – can ruin you.
And so, maybe there is something to taking a social media break. And this is something I really want to try.
I’ve been off Facebook for a week already – no posting at all. I still look at photos – because that’s the only reason I use the site. Instagram, I haven’t posted anything since Christmas because I haven’t had anything to share. Twitter – I might just deactivate for the few weeks.
The social media break challenge
Other than this blog – I’m taking the next 7 days off social media to give myself a break from the public eye. Wish me luck. I think as an artist, I rely too much on these sites.
As part of my fitness challenge, I think this break will definitely help boost up my mental health along with my overall health!
Did I mention I’m down about six pounds since Christmas? That’s pretty awesome too.
How are you working to improve your fitness levels?
(Normally, this is where I include my social media links. But not today! Nope. Can’t make me.)