Phooey to new online networking sites

I’m looking at you, Alignable.

Days ago I unsubscribed. My “relationship” with Alignable began several months ago when I started to receive its invitations to connect with people I know. Since these were Chicago-area people I consider friends, I agreed to connect rather than hurt their feelings.

When I’d see these people, mostly at events of Independent Writers of Chicago, I’d ask if they had received writing assignments or any other benefits from Alignable. They uniformly responded that no, they had not, and furthermore; they weren’t serious about Alignable participation.

At first I simply didn’t participate actively on Alignable. Then I decided to take it a step further and disengage totally.

What is Alignable?

Apparently it self-identifies as “the small business network.”

The problem is that I don’t need another small business network. LinkedIn already serves that purpose.

Alignable seems to have a localized component. This is something else that I don’t care about. The market for my freelance writing services is national (or even international), and my blog and article readership have no boundaries.

Frankly, the abundance of communications channels is getting tedious.

While LinkedIn can be a tedious source of information—I don’t care about work anniversaries of people I hardly know—I have always found the profiles to be pretty good and a few of the groups are interesting. Then I found out that I was being sent messages via LinkedIn from connections, but they weren’t always showing up in my email. Ticked me off but forced me to go into LinkedIn more frequently to see if I’ve been sent anything.

The phone, while old fashioned, enables real time conversations and is unique in this respect. It has also been invaluable in building my freelance writing practice. I’m sticking with this one.

But now I get nuisance calls that look like they are coming from my area code and first three following digits. I check my voicemail but try to resist the urge to answer what appear to be local calls.

Then there’s Facebook. People want to connect with me who I don’t know. I don’t connect. Also, I’ve hidden people I connected with in the past but have no live relationship with. I couldn’t care less about the friends, family, and vacations of strangers.

What about Twitter? When I joined almost a decade ago, I could stop in for a few minutes and find myself reading for hours. Today most of my direct messages are marketing spam and much of the content is extremely boring. Still, if I have a little time to kill, I may look at a few hashtags of interest.

It's my own fault. Years ago, I connected with 14,000 accounts on LinkedIn because I was told at a publishing conference that having lots of Twitter connections helps a writer get a book contract. What a waste of time!

Then there’s Pinterest. It’s very visual and not relevant to a service like mine that is purely verbal.

Instagram and Snapchat. Have experienced no reason to use them. Probably an age-related issue. (I’m the Girl Born in ’51. Do the math.)

Texting. I never respond to strangers’ texts. That’s not why I have a smartphone.

Email. I always scan the spam before deleting, but spam isn’t the issue. It’s the overkill of emails that far exceeds my expectations. I’m gradually cancelling.


At this point, every channel has its issues and there’s just too many of them.

I certainly won’t be signing up for any new services. How about you?



Type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

Filed under: networking

Leave a comment