They are my friends. I need to make that totally clear. And to give them their due, I also have to say that they are sometimes, in some ways approachable. And they do help to promote me and my work. And yet.
Unlike my blogger friends of yore, they don’t seem to notice or acknowledge when you link to them. They don’t always notice when you are speaking to them, even if you do tag them in a public post. They are never rude, of course. Except in that they sometimes seem to ignore you, even when you are right there. They are so different from you and me. Except I sometimes fear I am becoming one.
Social Media Rock Stars. I actually think there was a Facebook group with that name once, but I’m pretty sure it never really took off. S/M rockstars are usually quite friendly of course. They tend to greet most new ideas with enthusiasm and most always pledge to help. They are a bit less likely than most to actually follow through. And as I struggle to keep up with the almost 700 friends I’ve made to date I do have to wonder how the folks with 2,700 friends manage without things falling through the cracks. (Except of course that I know things DO fall through the cracks, as they did when I had thirty friends and when I had 300 friends…it really is kind of human nature I think.)
I am both thrilled and amazed at the great new people I continue to meet (like Susan Davis Cushing— one of the founders of #Sustainchat and master gardener and organic expert June Stoyer, who is patient even with my very brown thumb) and at the same time painfully aware that I now have at least 100 shareholders whom I have somehow not managed to meet, greet or invest in. It is so easy to be critical of others for the short-comings you perceive in their social media efforts. And so difficult to keep up with an ever growing number of friends and acquaintances. And I think the only is answer is the one that John Irving quoted in The Hotel New Hampshire. (“And so we beat on, and our dreams escape us almost as vividly as we can imagine them.”). It’s not really an answer to the time crunch of an ever expanding social media circle. But it may serve as a reminder that even if you have (insert Your friend count number here) friends, real communication is still more often than not a one to one experience.