Social networking. I am at that age where I remember when social networks became a big deal. I also remember a time before social networking was a “thing”. They’ve become a huge part of our lives, to the point where it seems like everything has an online presence: governments, celebrities, businesses, kids, grandparents, even our pets. Facebook has a Twitter account, and Twitter has a Facebook page. This seemingly never-ending take over of our lives by the Internet begs the question: does it help or hurt?
When I was in graduate school, I wrote my capstone paper (I wrote an alternate paper to a thesis because I decided not to continue for my PhD) on social networking and whether it builds or breaks down community. I ended up arguing both sides because in some ways both are true. Social networking has helped build communities on a large scale. Look at blogging for example: even 20 years ago it would have been almost impossible for someone across the globe from me to read what I write (not taking into consideration that I was 9 years old and most people weren’t reading what I wrote anyway, but you get the picture). Now, people all over the world read my words. On the other hand, there are countless articles about how to “unplug” from the internet.
I have been thinking a lot about my blog and how to build my readership. One way that comes highly recommended is to connect via social networking sites. And while I do agree, I am struggling to decide whether I want to connect my blog with my presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or the other sites I am on. I suppose I could create sites specifically for this blog, but I’m still deciding on my goals and vision for All Things Autumn. I look at fellow bloggers who started at the same time as I did, and many of them have more followers than I do. I know the point of this is not to compare myself to others, or judge my success by the accomplishments of anyone else. It is something I have always struggled with. I am NOT jealous of other peoples’ success, I just want to figure out how to get my words to a larger audience.
For now, I plan on focusing on posting more regularly and continuing to find more blogs I enjoy. I have also been spending more time reading the blogs I have followed for a while in order to increase the sense of community I found so inviting when this blog began.