CAVEAT TWITTER-OR: On the Pros & Cons of Social Media

     “Meaningless, meaningless, meaningless,” said the Twitterer, “everything is meaningless!” In this day of rampant Social Media, many well-intentioned, sensitive & highly intelligent souls feel a certain kind of both ennui & frustration as it relates to its many venues. Indeed, after a few months of Twitter, one most likely would come to a point of suicidal and/or homicidal ideation-a full blown existential crisis. And one's life needn't even be that “empty” to begin with to reach this point. One can also have a well-rounded existence & life & still feel that way after countless marketing strategies posing as “social interactions”. But the thing is, as we used to say, “Ya gotta learn to take the good with the bad,” right? Or, do we? First of all, that adage should say instead “take the bad with the good”, after all no one starts out in any endeavour in life hoping to gain something 'bad' out of it no matter how much a masochist or a self-defeatist one might well be. We all, no matter our level of emotional maturity and/or development, need a certain level of depth & meaningfulness-even, dare I say it-intimacy to be exchanged in our social interactions & so-called “connections.” And I don't mean to conjure up stereotypical images of the “basement hermit” who never interacts with the outside world in any meaningful or responsible way. No, those individuals choose the “virtual world” as a substitute for the outer world. I love the outer world! In healthy doses, of course, as with all things. So, without further ado, let's break this down into smaller, more manageable bits & bytes, of course.

 

(From here on out, I will refer to all Social Media conglomerates as “Twitter” or those who use them regularly (myself included) as “twitterers” under the heading “TO TWITTER OR NOT TO TWITTER”)

 

 

 

TO “TWITTER” OR NOT TO “TWITTER”: The Pros & Cons

 

 

PROS & THEIR SUCCESSIVE CONS

 

*Provides an alternative way to reconnect with loved ones & friends, etc. that one would not either feel appropriate for other methods or that one would not be able to through other methods.

 

*Of course, the obvious CON to above PRO being that it opens you up to potential negative experiences, rejection, & in general all of the possible vagaries of the human-to-human dialectic. But, the PRO to this CON, if you will, is that you're already well-versed in those kinds of vagaries, so, it can't get any worse, right? (Although, maybe it can...)

 

*Provides a convenient forum through which to browse a wondrously eclectic array of art, literature (including “blogs”), & to learn about other cultures, belief systems, etc. Now, you may be thinking that your public library can & does offer these wonders & amenities for the most part already, but not all from the same monitor, a few clicks of a mouse & some strokes on a keyboard.

 

*The also obvious CON to the aforementioned PRO is that, again, the more we broaden our consciousness, the more vulnerable it is to those “darker principalities” which seek their willing vessels. But, again, the same is true for life before Social Media, right? (Or, is it-at least as prevalently?...)

 

*Provides a way to purchase services &/or goods with a few clicks of a mouse & strokes on a keyboard, & have them delivered to your personal &/or other preferred residence within a relatively convenient period of time.

 

*CON: “Spams” you with a whole bunch of shit (& “people”) that you neither need nor want, thereby making you feel a bit like a piece of marketing meat, or a "punching bag" for some mentally unbalanced & malfeasant individual, thus making you question the whole of its usefulness and even desirability in articles just like this one.

 

*Provides an occasional moment of appreciation &/or connection with another human being that is genuine & deeply meaningful.

 

*CON: Seems to cancel out the aforementioned PRO by being pathologically too scarce & inconsistent with itself. One begins to feel that they are possibly (& definitely unwittingly) in a relationship with an emotionally abusive entity of Artificial Intelligence. (Oh, by the way, I also mean the “humans.”)

 

*Provides a raison d'etre through the wonderfully autonomous mediums of blogsites, AuthorPages, LiveJournals, business forums, etc. for those of us who thrive best in those independently-minded kinds of environs.

 

* Caveat Twitter-or. If not balanced with “work” & social connections out in the “concrete” world may turn into the CON of making one feel more disconnected & more existentially null & void than one ever felt before becoming a “twitteror.”

 

*Can provide a way to feel connected.

 

*Makes one feel more dis-connected. (Those two just seem to keep coming up, don't they?)

 

*Gives one a sense of purpose.

 

*Gives one a sense of insignificance. (Yeah, those two keep popping up, too.)

 

*Provides a virtual life “supplement” to entertain, enlighten & enliven you when you're not out in the “other” world doing other things.

 

*CON: If taken as the “main course” (in the intellective-emotive gustatory sense, or course) can render one with a potentially fatal case of impoverishment, malnourishment & mental rickets, which may lead to dementia. All in all, we can conclude that: Social Media is meant to be taken "supplementally", not as the "main course." As with all things, balance, right?

 

*Hmmnnnn...what else could possibly be noted about Social Media & its effects/affects. Huh. Yeah, it seems to “affect” us more than it “effects” us, doesn't  it-at least in the “eternal”, “metaphysical” sense? Not much more can be said. Because it seems to keep boiling down to same two salient PROS & CONS. It helps us feel connected, but makes us feel even lonelier than we ever did before its advent. And secondly, it gives us a sense of purpose when we employ ourselves meaningfully within it, but at the same time impoverishes us, existentially, & psycho-spiritually, no matter how “conscientiously” we utilize it. Hence, in finale, I suppose it all boils down to this: Progress has its limitations. We cannot escape the human predicament. In a sense, this revelation has its comforts more than its inflictions. For with this being known, we are free to follow whatever path we choose, knowing now, that it will continue to lead us to the same place, no matter which road we take. Yet, if we are utilizing it properly & responsibly, we will be gaining inward growth & evolution in a positive direction. It also serves to relieve our consciences by reminding us that we are not even the problem, & thus we need not seek to "fix" it, whatever our current sufferings might be. We must merely accept things as they are. We must merely continue to make the most out of the human condition that we find ourselves in & do the best with what little this world, in the way of true, everlasting sustenance, has to offer. Now that, is all well within our purview.

 

 

    

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