The Saturdaily: On Social Media (Seth's List)

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"The Saturdaily" is a weekly roundup of good writing, reading, and listening. Check out my list.

If you are reading this, there is no doubt that you are engaged in the social media age. Certainly, good things have come of it, but it would be hard to argue that it hasn't led to a near-detrimental amount of over-sharing, personal marketing, and a cultural sense of pseudo-narcissism. This week's Saturdaily recognizes folks musing on the topic. It's high time we started having these discussions more publicly.

1. Sarah Markley feels social media tension. She's the proprietor of a solidly read (and top-notch) blog, which often seems to carry the expectation of open sharing. She explores privacy, authenticity, and social media in two separate pieces: "A Call for Privacy," and "The Pressure of Living Publicly." She writes:

"But we often don’t value people who are wise enough to keep some of their lives private. We label them as elitist or non-authentic."

Sarah's pieces are made to read together. Spend some time this morning mining the gems from her words.

2. Prompted by Sarah' s piece, Alece Ronzino writers her "blog length comment," on "Privacy, Authenticity, and Living Publicly." She drops this confession on us:

"Sometimes I have to fight the feeling that I’m missing out on great connections and opportunities (because of watching people quote-unquote “get ahead” with their @replies and intentional online shoulder-rubbing) and that I’m just missing out on all the fun..."

In this world of tweeting about everything from book deals to dinner with that select group of local friend, social media can leave us feeling empty. Unslaked. Perhaps we need more honest confessions from folks like Alece.

3. All this talk of social media sent me scrambling for my copy of Henri Nouwen's work Reaching Out. In it, he writes:

"Even the most intimate concerns, such as concerns about the meaning and value of life and death, can become victims of the fashion of the time."

and...

"...we should ask how much of our... writing is more part of an impulsive reaction to the changing demands of our surroundings..."

and finally (and whoa!)...

"When our protests against war, segregation and social injustice do not reach beyond the level of reaction, then our indignation becomes self-righteous, our hope for a better world degenerates into a desire for quick results, and our generosity is soon exhausted by disappointments."

These are good thoughts for those engaged in social media. Do you hear them?

4. Finally, and to bring it full circle, Sarah is calling for social media related posts. Would you consider penning your own thoughts and linking up with her on Monday? You can read "Call for Posts," for more information.

5. How about a little social media song by Garrison Keillor.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXsorPbcSgo]

Now it's your turn. Have any thoughts on social media? Are there any links you want to share? Have at it in the comments.