The Problem with Social Media

The Problem with Social Media

How much time do you spend a day using social media? One hour, two hours or a half a day? The line is blurred between using these social media sites for our personal and/or business purpose. We think that we are reaching a potential business audience. Are we really making an impact?

It’s difficult to determine if we are spending way too much time on our Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest or LinkedIn accounts or not. All of these companies are guilty of sending us information on what others are doing, along with sending our lists of contacts e-mails to endorse us or inform us that one of our followers or contacts has something we may be interested in.

I don’t know about you but if I read all the information that was sent to me by these social media sites, I wouldn’t have any time left in my day to work, eat or sleep! It is just too much information being sent by these companies as they attempt to find ways to get us connected in a deeper more meaningful way.

For the most part, it is not working. I don’t care if one of my Facebook friends joined Pinterest. Quite frankly, I don’t have the time to learn how to effectively use the site. It is like playing the card game Bridge or Chess which takes too much effort to learn. I am more of a Poker or Checkers player. I once mastered Backgammon, but it took me a long time to become proficient at the game.

The point is that all of these social media sites take a solid commitment of time to master them without knowing the direct result of our efforts. Perhaps, I am just too busy to deal with most of them. I know most of you are busy, too. The social media sites are addicting. but do they lead to results and how much time do you really have to put into them to get a payback?

The social media sites are cross pollinating leading us into uncharted territory. They are using our public information they have gained from our subscription to these sites to identify what our buying habits are and lifestyle, so they can get advertising revenue. All of our pertinent information is out there in cyberspace that we voluntarily have given them.

Online marketing research firms like Radiant 6 and Motivequest scour the social media dashboards, online conversations and our blogs to gather information for their clients as to consumer behavior. They are getting quite good at packaging our information. Companies pay these firms big money for access to this information.

This leads to more solicitation from companies that clutter our spam folder and often end up in our inbox. I spend a fair amount of time opting out from these solicitations which adds more time spent responding to e-mail I don’t want.

Facebook is now allowing your friends that comment on your post to see your information which makes any secure information an open platform. What is happening behind the scenes is enough to make you skip social media all together. It’s time to tighten up our dialog on these sites and spend more quality time on figuring out how to make money and other ways to market our brand.


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  • Facebook and other "social" media sites are an oxymoron, in terms of being "social", and the sites increasing are finding ways to disclose personal information for profit. Add in the fact that not only advertisers can scour your comments, but your future and current employers, and the government at all levels for all reasons (almost always with the cooperation of the media site and with no warrants), you have the death of privacy and the death of intimacy with real friends.

    I have closed my personal Facebook site for the very reason of not understanding the ever changing (on purpose) privacy terms, and am thinking about doing the same with Linked-in, though I THINK I understand their privacy terms, though somehow a blanket email went out to people in my address book about a year ago, and I have no idea how it happened.

    Social is face to face, a handshake or a hug. Aren't we isolated enough from each other with air conditioning and back decks (instead of front porches) and ipods in our ears?

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