Social networking

Social networking is the bane of my life. Well one of them. And I know I’m not alone. Either you are like me, and find it heavy going, or you love it and spend far too much time playing around instead of working. Lately I’ve been making a big effort to sharpen up my social media skills.

I get blogging; it’s almost stream of consciousness rambling, a jotting down of random thoughts and ideas. It could even be a medium for testing ideas for stories. It’s certainly a wonderful use for the short snippets of writing that my mind anyway churns out as a sideline while I’m writing more serious stuff.

I can see the point of Facebook it’s quick and immediate, and is a relatively painless way of getting a piece of news out. I even worked out the idea behind Pinterest and have started to splatter my ‘boards’ with pretty pictures. Even though I don’t know what use it is as a tool for writers, I could easily spend a pleasant half hour browsing through other people’s pretty pictures.

But Twitter continues to evade me. I have tweeted. Twice in fact. But it’s rather like the quip of the pensioner taken on a daytrip to the seaside for the first time in her life and plonked in a deckchair on the front. When asked:
“How do you like the sea then, Doris?” she replied, “It’s all right I suppose, but is that all it does?”

This is exactly my problem with Twitter. What does it do? How do you join in? And join in with what? I’ve read tweets, and well, honestly! This is meant to be the social networking tool par excellence and I know I am missing some important point. The expression hash tags has something to do with the gap in my knowledge, and so does retweeting. Maybe when I find out what those expressions mean, the scales will drop from my eyes, and behold! Twitter will be revealed to me in all its splendour. Maybe.

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Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

8 thoughts on “Social networking”

  1. Pleased to hear it, Susan. It looks dead easy. So, you tweet to someone you know. Then what? They tweet their four words back. Big deal, I’m impressed. I’ll definitely let you know if I crack the secret code. I’ll probably write a pamphlet about it.

  2. I’m discovering twitter gradually and my grasp is limited. Having created a page with a catchphrase and my blog-link, I follow people who interest me, not necessarily who follows me. I tweet links to articles I find, or my blog-posts, and sometimes I click on links to articles others share. When I like something I may retweet (RT), which repeats a tweet, now with an added link to your Twitter page. Others may do the
    same with your tweets. You can favour a tweet, or leave a reply. Sometimes a little dialogue evolves, even if it’s only ‘thanks, my pleasure …’
    Adding a hashtag theme doubles your message on a separate page, like #writing, #editing #cropcircles #booklaunch or a news topic.
    People not in your network may look for connections under, let’s say #writing, and potentially pick up your message there. You too can search for themes by using a #hashtag term. If no page exists with your term you actually create it when you use it. There are promotion potentials with this I have not explored. The magic is that each person has their own network. So, for example, if you retweet something or reply you will be visible in another network. Like on FB.
    What I resist are imported contacts – automatic link-ups that make everything I do on twitter goes to FB or Linkedin and vis versa. Just me. So I sign in separately with each network, and in any case use each sparingly because I value my time to write.
    The ‘pros’ use apps to pre-program twitter messages and relentlessly promote their product, which I find annoying. It all depends what people want to achieve. I made good contacts, of which one brought me a publisher.
    You can find me on twitter by searching for @mushkilgusha

  3. Thanks for the info on hashtags, Ashen. I was given a crash course on Twitter last night, but will wait until this afternoon to try it out. I obviously hadn’t even got through the door with it. You might well find me twittering in your feed sometime today as I start mucking about with my newfound knowledge.

  4. I’ll admit I spend too much time on Facebook, but Twitter continues to evade me. I know how to share a link on there, but that’s about it. I forget to use hashtags even though I know I’m supposed to. I’m learning as I go, but it’s slow going considering I didn’t have any social media platform until a couple of years ago. If you need help, find a teenager–they seem to understand how it all works.

  5. Don’t talk to me about hashtags! I had a look at my Twitter, page or account or whatever it is, quite prepared to have a go at adding a hashtag, when I realised I didn’t know what to add it to, or where to stick it when I’d done it. My kids won’t use Twitter, they are completely dismissive of it. FB is much more fun for them, pictures of last night’s party on the big screen etc.

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