Navigating Ups & Downs of the Top Social Media Watering Holes
Social media can seem like a watering hole in the wild. But instead of water, individuals go there to quench their thirst for social interaction and approval. Whoever conquers the watering hole has a higher status. Although I prefer to socialize in person, I am on social media every day. Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook are my favorite online watering holes.
Instagram is a photo album where you can look at everyone’s experiences through pictures without having to make a trip to their grandma’s house. I scroll down my Instagram feed and see celebrities, friends, food, new tattoo ideas, ads., etc. The platform is filled with new and upcoming trends as well as insights into users’ lives. It also provides a space for people to put a false identity of themselves into the world, but whether you want to adhere to it or not is your choice.
I would like to see Instagram organized into separate topics. For instance, If I wanted to just look at my friends and family’s posts or just celebrities I would have separate feeds for them. This way I do not have to scroll through the bs when I don’t feel like it. I’ve also noticed Instagrammers are in and out of several different apps in attempt to publish their best selfie or picture of the meal they are about to devour. It would be nice to have advanced editing tools within Instagram or have an option for an “Instagram +” where they offer better tools to eliminate the back and forth.
The ad algorithm for Instagram is very well put together. I am always pulled into the (not so random) products the app is constantly spewing at me. It is also entertaining to hear my mother freak out when the Michael Kors purse she was eyeing pops up on her Instagram feed. She thinks they are “watching her”, but I know otherwise.
Twitter is where everyone goes to see if the jokes they think of are actually funny or not. I’d like to think my followers don’t have a sense of humor, but I digress. The Twitterites also like to complain about anything and everything in hopes someone else feels the same way. The name is perfect because it is like walking past a bird-filled bush; everyone is chirping at the same time, and you have no idea what they’re talking about.
There’s not one thing I would change about Twitter (besides certain people being able to use it). Twitter is a master at listening and adapting to what their users want while sticking to what they know best.
The Twitterites want an edit button, but Twitter will never allow it. They know people make mistakes and might want to fix those mistakes, however; editing can change the entire meaning of a tweet. For example, someone could tweet “I hate the color blue”. Then someone comments “Me too”. Then the original tweeter edits it to say, “I love the color blue”, and now everyone believes the commentator loves the color blue as well. Imagine if someone very important edited tweets all the time… embrace your mistakes.
Of course I am still on Facebook. It is a great resource to find upcoming events in your surrounding area giving me something to do every weekend. It is also a great source of entertainment itself. I could look at funny memes, baby videos, and failed gender reveals for hours on Facebook. I try to steer clear of the depressing posts and complaints about the world we live in as much as I can. Overall it is a good distraction when I need it.
The Messenger app and Facebook app should not be two separate entities. It makes no sense to have a different app just for messaging others . All it does is take up another centimeter of space on my home screen. I do love how you can mute people for a while on Facebook. If you are bothered by someone’s posts it is easy to shut them out for a while. This allows you to still follow them instead of unfollowing them and hurting their feelings.
Facebook is a little too cluttered with content. I think that is the reason why Instagram and Twitter sprouted from it. They are just simplified versions that focus on one aspect from the OG social media platform. Facebook could come back into the spotlight of social media if they decluttered the design and streamlined it more.
Don’t Fear Social… or Let It Swallow You Whole
Almost everyone is on some sort of social media platform. It is not required, but expected to be a part of most individuals’ lives. It is also one of the leading causes for students to go to counseling at Kent State University. Stay connected in person, and do not be afraid of the lions at the watering hole. They are probably just as thirsty as you are.