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I found this article on the Buddhist website Tricycle.com titled:
The article really spoke to me in terms of how many people could use social media but often don’t. In fact, it seems to me that many of the complaints about social media stem from their interactions with or understanding of social media by those who don’t practice mindfully. (And I’m sooo guilty of this too!)
Ever hear someone complaint that Twitter is a broadcast medium where everyone is shouting and no one is listening? Or that they’re afraid spending their whole lives on Facebook? If you use social media mindfully, authentically, aware of your intentions, truthfully and in a helpful way, while still being here, now, in the present moment with the people you’re with I believe many of those complaints would begin to dissipate.
It’s when we begin to use social media as a coping mechanism to escape the reality we’re in that often times leads to this all-or-nothing outsider mentality. What mindful social media practice means to me is that when I’m online, I can be totally online. When I’m offline, I can do that with my full attention too. It’s when I get distracted in between… usually on my phone, answering an email or responding to a post while walking down the hallway that I realize I’m not mindful of reality. I’ve found it much more helpful to eat while I eat, surf while I surf, and walk when I walk. And that doesn’t mean that since I have the internet in my pocket I can’t look something up when I need too, even if it’s in the middle of a meeting.
So the question is, are you using social media to escape reality?
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I say Twitter should buy Delicious. Talk about a powerhouse combo! So many people use Twitter to aggregate and pass links, often times never saved or seen again (just like the tweets themselves). But wouldn’t it be great if every link you ever tweeted was automatically bookmarked and stored for you? What if every posted by everyone you ever follow was stored too?
What’s even greater is that Delicious does tags (folksonomy), something long missing from Twitter. Could Twitter put that tag system to use, not only for links, but to get rid of this silly hashtag stop-gap measure and get down and dirty with some real taxonomicial mojo?
A few years ago, links were the currency of the web: traded, saved, and stored. Very few of us keep detailed records of links, unless doing research or a paper or something. If we did keep track, we had a myriad of resources to choose from: blogs, wikis, and RSS through sites like Delicious. Today however, we’re still passing links every day, but with Twitter as our aggregator. Where Digg.com succeeded over Delicious was in its community. Where Twitter succeeded over Digg.com was… in its community (and respect for community). Where Twitter fails is in its storage and search for past links and other metadata, i.e. who passed it to who and how.
Twitter is growing up fast and has made only one big purchase: Tweetie, the best Twitter iPhone app at that time. In doing so, it strangled the market for Twitter apps and put a solid stamp on its mobile product. By buying Delicious, Twitter could do the same for the short URL, which was developed entirely on the premise that most links take up too much of the 140 character limit. There are security concerns with such links and where they might land. Giants like Google have stepped into the foray with http://goo.gl/ and Delicious uses http://icio.us. But services like http://bit.ly/ and http://tinyurl.com/ seem to be ruling the day. But for how long? By buying Delicious, Twitter could shore up the shortened URL market and with deeper integration and tools then they currently use now.