Some people call me lucky, being paid to be on Twitter and Facebook all day and I admit, it’s a great perk to my job but as social media grows as a marketing tool, it also grows as an everyday occurrence in life and something we accept as normal. Social media, it’s everywhere we look, be it in the form of Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, we can’t escape it. Take a conversation I had with my housemates the other day:
Me: “So, are you and her official now?”
Housemate 2: “Not totally yet, no”
Housemate 1: “Well of course not, it’s not on Facebook!”
When did the rule of “It’s not a real relationship if it is not on Facebook” become the norm? I even found myself saying to a friend the other day “Well he hasn’t really broken up with you yet, you are still in a relationship on Facebook”. I spent years learning about marketing and spend the majority of my working day using social media as a marketing tool, but even I fall prey to the acceptance of it as a normal part of our lives. I also fall for the stupid idea of putting chocolate by the check-outs in supermarkets, “Oh a Wispa bar, just what my day has been missing”.
Some of you may be sat there thinking, “Nah not me”, but how many of you have sat there looking at a significant other, the person you’re dating, or even just a f*ckbuddy’s Facebook profile to find out what they have been up to? That is if you get the friendship request accepted in the first place and what a nerve-racking time that is waiting for the approval. How many of you gasp when you see they have a new friend of the opposite sex? What does it mean if they detag themselves in a photo of the two of you? What if they were tagged in a photo at a party, or checked in at a place when they told you they were working late so couldn’t see you? And who is the pretty blonde in the photo next to them anyways?! We all do it, even if we don’t want to admit to it and we will all drive ourselves crazy in the process!
“When did the rule of “It’s not a real relationship if it is not on Facebook” become the norm?”
Ultimately what effect does social media have on our personal lives? Why don’t we ask a certain footballer? If it wasn’t for Twitter and 75,000 Tweeters, who he then tried to sue, his little alleged indiscretion may have forever remained covered by the injunction he took. In less than an hour, his secret was out and his relationship hung in the balance, partly due to the power of social media and the speed in which information can travel the globe.
In an age where we think nothing of uploading the photo we just took straight to Facebook, “checking in” at a place with our friends and telling the world who we are or aren’t in a relationship with, have we become obsessed with social media without even realising it?