Social networks have changed more than some of our ways of communication. They have provided a platform to get in touch with people we would probably never meet otherwise, especially when we live on different continents and share nothing more than a special interest in a subject. But here we are one day, chatting on twitter, liking on facebook, and plussing on google+. And it’s a fantastic thing that the fact that we are one world sort of shows in this interaction.
But as with all things, there is light as well as shadow. There is beauty in it but also a certain dark side we rarely acknowledge. All this communication can make us feel close to a person we don’t really know. It can fool us, mislead, and put us on the very wrong track so that we one day face the hurt of a serious crash landing.
I’ve already written here about “How close are we from afar?“, musing about the question about how much of a person’s “real life” we want to read publicly, how this can make us feel and which chances and dangers are in it. But what if we are flattered because someone famous suddenly answers a question we threw at him or her? Once? Twice? Then again?
How tempting to think, you are special. How tempting to assume you somehow stand out, are different, mean something to someone who doesn’t know you at all. And yes, you suddenly might tend to forget that this person really might just have found your question interesting or even useful because with it you accidentally served that person a possibility to say what she or he wanted to tell anyway. Because you want to be seen. Because we all want to be heard. It’s human nature.
Now step into the shoes of that famous person who just answered you. Imagine it were you. Picture getting likes, tweets, comments on nearly everything you put out on social media. Taste that. How does it feel? Like a big “Wow”, right?
Of course. It must be so flattering along with interesting because you can eavesdrop on what they think about you out there in an unfiltered way. And you learn you are loved more than you ever thought. This must be just overwhelming so that something inside of you will start to crave for more and more of it. And there is a way to get it.
So, you react – if only because your subconscious tells you to, to make sure they go on, because it’s nourishing your soul. Because it feels so good. And of course you are thankful for them doing it. But does this make you interested in those persons, in who they are and what they do? Does it make you want to know more about them?
I really don’t know. I guess it makes you want for them to go on doing what feels so awfully good to you. It’s another fix of that emotion you’re after, not the person who provides it.
Somehow sobering, that train of thoughts? Maybe. But then, it should not lessen your joy over some reactions you might get on things you say. But if you listen to your inner voice it might tell you something more powerful. That we are all just humans. That…
We are all different and alike.