We all have those friends on social media that have the digital equivalent of verbal diarrhoea. It’s generally around the holiday period that these friends come out of the woodwork, posting a barrage of ‘from where you’d rather be’ images, attempting to smear their holiday in your face. When I receive this onslaught of newsfeed clogging Instagram and Facebook posts and Snapchats I start to wonder how much fun these friends are actually having.
I’m not going to act as if I’m not also guilty of this social media spam. I recently went to Europe for three weeks, and found myself in the habit of posting at least one thing at the end of every day. Although I attempted to make sure my posts were more of a ‘highlight reel’ than a blow-by-blow of the trip, I’m sure I irritated many of my connections with the frequency of my posting.
I think that there’s a direct correlation between the frequency of posting and the amount of fun you’re having. In my opinion little to no posts probably means you’re having a fairly decent time, sharing the occasional highlight with your network. When you’re posting something every five minutes, however, I’m going to assume that whatever you’re doing is boring and you’re replaying it through your camera lens in an attempt to pretend it isn’t. I think Snapchat is probably the best platform to observe this amount of posts to fun had ratio.
Snapchat (for those technologically adverse readers who have yet to use this nifty little program) is an app which allows you to send photos or videos to friends for up to ten seconds, and then these videos disappear. You also have a profile, the snapchat equivalent of a Facebook ‘timeline’, where you are able to post a ‘story’ which can be seen for 24 hours. My 15 year old brother tells me that the kids at his school mainly use snapchat for sending ‘nudes’, my age-group however has not limited their use of the app to just illicit content, the main purpose of snapchat, as far as I can tell, is to show one another what an amazing time you’re having. We send snaps of great nights out, friends doing ridiculous things and lazing around on the pristine beaches that we all live so close to. When snapchats fitting these descriptions pop up on my story I’m always happy to watch them, a good snapchat binge is my guilty pleasure. Although, I can’t help but think that there’s a direct correlation between the frequency of snapchats and the amount of fun you’re having.
Some people’s snapchats are reminiscent of movies, a snap for every scene, laying out a comprehensive story of their entire day. This kind of snapchatting requires dedication. You have to have your phone on you, ready to jump on the most shareable experiences. Here is where my theory comes in, if you’re holding your phone the entire time, waiting for a moment to capture, it feels like you’re waiting for something to validate your experience- some golden moment to make your whole day seem better than everyone else’s. I think to an extent we all use social media to prove something. Some people share lots of articles to prove their intelligence, some share experiences to prove that they’re fun. In the end, it seems that excessive posting does nothing more than remind your network that you’re trying to prove something, and you’ll spam them relentlessly to prove your point, no matter what it may be.
Social Media is great, in moderation. No one wants to see a ten minute story of your grandma’s 85th birthday, or of you exploring a beach that looks exactly like the one right outside their door. So my message is this, proliferate your life in snippets, keep ‘em wanting more!