Waiting For Social Media To Fail Is A Waste Of Time

Earlier today, there was a news alert that came through from CNN saying that the major portion of the health care bill has been ruled unconstitutional. Since Twitter is usually quick with news the flurry of reports of the story hit the airwaves and exploded. Minutes later, there was a retraction of that and it was then reported that the Supreme Court said instead that the health care bill was constitutional, and of course the conversation turned another way.

via birgerking via Flickr

Out of the blue, one of the people on Twitter came out with this statement:

I love Twitter, but I love seeing it get its comeuppance even more.

I thought it was kind of a stupid statement, so I responded by saying this:

Illogical statement since none of this had anything to do with Twitter getting it wrong.

His response back to me was thus:

I think we can all agree that Twitter is no match for a Supreme Court decision.

To which I responded:

“Apparently neither is CNN, which reported it first in a news release.”

I have to admit that the initial part of the exchange threw me off. Why would someone on Twitter, who must like it to some degree, be happy when ‘they’ took a hit, especially when they didn’t take a hit? I thought about that one for a moment, then realized that I probably do the same thing from time to time, as there’s a lot of things Google does that I don’t like, yet I use their services in many different ways.

So I concentrated on the second part instead, that being that Twitter wasn’t to blame for any of what occurred. Just like probably so many other people, I saw a news alert come to my phone telling me that the law had been ruled unconstitutional, went to Twitter to comment on it, and about 5 seconds after I typed my one line another alert came through issuing a correction. I at least waited 5 minutes before I wrote what I wrote, but the information wasn’t correct, and I wrote my little retraction.

Still, it wasn’t Twitter’s fault, but the exchange got me thinking about those people who are ready to find something wrong with something they don’t like, without any real background or reason for being against it, and then pouncing when they feel justified. We all know people like that, the negative Nellies that hate pretty much everything and, when something goes wrong, stands up like the paragon of righteousness, feeling superior to everything that eventually went their way.

Except things almost never go their way. Here’s a truth; everyone eventually will be correct if that’s not their natural state. It’s like hearing that someone 75 years old passed away and having someone say “see, I told you cigarettes would kill him some day.”

Now, I’ll put out a caveat here. I don’t agree with everything. But when I disagree with something, I almost always have a reason for it. I do get bad vibes about some people or certain things that I might not be able to explain initially, but usually my reason for it comes fairly quickly. I try to be fair, even with things I’m not in total agreement with, but if there’s something I really don’t like, I’ll have reasons. And if something goes wrong for the reasons I put out there… yeah, I might feel a little smug. But I’ll have stated my reasons; I won’t have just sat around waiting for something bad to happen without a specific reason so I can say I told you so.

Folks, here’s a reality; social media isn’t going away. No matter how many people say they’re against this or that, Pandora’s Box has been opened, and those things aren’t going back in. Lament all you will about the loss of people talking to each other or not communicating as well, but we all had best be ready to embrace social media because it’s only going to become more of the norm as time goes by. Goodness, large corporations have already embraced video conferencing so they don’t have to spend millions of dollars shuttling people all over the world for a 1-hour meeting.

And don’t worry. Social media will not replace everything. It won’t replace family; it won’t replace good friends. If you like going out to the bar it won’t be replaced by social media. Restaurants; I’m still coming. Romance… well, some folks might enjoy only what they find online but the majority still want someone in their lives.

Whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, or whatever replaces any of these things as time goes by, I recommend learning about them, decide if you’re going to participate or not, and then get on with life. You’ll be happier that way.

17 thoughts on “Waiting For Social Media To Fail Is A Waste Of Time”

  1. Yes, they are those that believe it will go away or all blow up. There will be more social networks added all the time too. That’s how I learned about the bill yesterday – via Twitter on the smartphone.

  2. Social media spread the news faster than anything else, especially if it is connected to mobile phone or any kind of desktop software. Unfortunately large portion of information is always coming outdated or misleading and sometimes even a major sources are throwing this misleading information.

      1. That’s a good point, Mitch. Honestly, I stopped watching the news on TV, usually get informed much faster from social media or RSS feeds as I spend my whole day on PC.

  3. Blaming Twitter for this is like blaming the messenger. It’s not so much Twitter at fault here as it was the people who got the message wrong in the first place and all the people jumping on the story before it had the chance to develop.

    I agree with you that social media is here to stay and it’s not going to fail anytime soon.

    Thanks for sharing!

    1. True Grady. I waited 5 minutes before saying anything, only for the retraction to come as I hit enter. So be it; that’s how the news goes sometimes. But using it as an excuse to find blame with social media… nope, makes no sense at all. In a way, social media got it right faster as well.

  4. Using Social media can be a waste of time if they not use
    it in a good purposes. And i don’t think social media will disappear that soon, most people are using it socializing even though they know they are wasting their time on it.

  5. Adapt or get lost in the trend… that’s what it’s all about. Social media gets you closer not only to the news but also to people around the world .. so i don’t think this pattern will be gone soon

  6. I agree that the goof was not upon Twitter, but upon the people who use Twitter without checking facts. Of course, these people probably thought that a story straight from CNN should be reliable, so lets point the gun at CNN for being in such a rush to scoop the competition that they released a story without verifying the information. In my mind, it is this aspect of social media (and I include eMail hoaxes in this) that is most irritating: that people will believe almost anything they read – and are too quick to ‘share’ the information.

    1. Allan, a couple of hours later Wolf Blitzer came out and said that he could see how everyone thought the decision went the other way. Seems Justice Roberts started reading his opinion and initially said that based on whatever the law was unconstitutional, and that’s when people ran with the story, without waiting for him to finish reading his statement. Still, that’s bad news reporting; I don’t blame anyone on Twitter for writing what they did because, as I said, I just got it through a news alert myself.

      But to use that as a way to say social media, specifically Twitter, got its come-uppance… nope, wasn’t buying it.

      1. Nope I wouldn’t buy it either. Nothing to do with Twitter, and not so much with the Twitterers, but with the reporters who jumped to conclusions and dashed out to get a jump on the others and ended up with egg on their faces. This time it was them.

        All too often I see e-mails, Facebook posts and even Tweets that go viral claiming to be supporting some cause or help some sick child, or reporting some event, and if you check it out, it’s totally bogus and often had gone around before.

        I’m not blaming Twitterers this time: they got the news from CNN, which should be reliable, but all too often emotional messages spawn depths of gullibility…

      2. Good stuff Allan, and I see scam stuff all the time as well. One of the problems with Twitter is that many links are rewritten and it’s hard for people to know who to trust or what to trust. Still, I don’t wish for social media to fail. Maybe certain things here and there but social media isn’t going anywhere. And let’s face it; Twitter gets it right more often than not.

  7. Blaming tweeter in this case is not right since the information came from CNN ,the thing is that Tweeter gets allot of responses in short time so if some thing posted is not correct it has more effect than TV in this case CNN.

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