Sometimes in life you have to make the tough decision to walk away from toxic relationships. In our technological age, this doesn’t just apply to the human-to-human type of relationships but also to the human-to-social network type of relationships.
As some of you may know, I’m always on the lookout for a network or platform where I can find an audience for my work. I hadn’t been too happy with using online stores that charge a lot of fees on top of the Paypal fees when making sales for a small handmade business. Facebook also wasn’t the best choice because of the view limits that are imposed on public pages. I’ve tried several platforms but recently decided that two monetized platforms were just eating my time and creativity without providing much in return in the way of sales or growth for my business. This breakup letter is about them, although they shall both remain nameless since I see no need to give them any more publicity or link love.
Dear Social Networks,
I remember when we met so well. I was an original content creator full of ideas and humor and creativity, and I saw in you the perfect escape from a platform which hid my qualities from those that cared for me. You offered a place where I could still own my content, and where my talents would be exposed to new audiences along with a tiny monetary incentive just for doing so. My friend and I quickly joined up (she brought me to one and I brought her to the other). I even invited more friends along. How full of mirth and possibilities we were! We met new people who liked our work and people whose work we liked as well! It was definitely a lustful honeymoon period. Unfortunately, it did not last long at all.
Social Network Number 1 – Oh the features you had. Glorious and many although a bit confusing to new users who may have found it overwhelming. When I created a private group to try and help my friends along and to get to know you better, your admin barged right into the group to start answering questions even though you had never been invited as a member of the group. That was the first sign of problems between us. Boundaries, people. They are important! When I explained to you how some of your post reactions were being seen as very negative to new users, you argued with me, even though I was trying to help and make it a better experience for all. Your low traffic site was overrun with robots that all the real users could clearly see and recognize, but you must have thought we were not intelligent enough to notice. You confused me with my dear friend. Big mistake. How can a relationship last when you can’t even tell the difference between your users who surely have different IP addresses, being in separate countries? It wasn’t bad enough that you couldn’t tell us apart, but then you treated her badly by hanging on to her money for far too long when she made a sale on your site and proceeded to make public the conversations you had with her in a group because you still couldn’t tell us apart. Obviously, I chose my friend over you because you would have treated me the same way. And so we had to part ways. It’s sad that I had so much hope for you and would have been willing to bring more people to you if you had treated me right. But I can only base my decisions on what I see and learn. I’m a woman who knows I can’t marry you and then change you. I’m just glad we did not bring many children (people I invited to the site) into the equation.
Social Network Number 2 – It wasn’t long before I noticed that while you continued to say you cared for me and valued me that you only introduced everyone to your sexy model friends while I stood by in the background. You also didn’t seem to know how to keep a professional distance from most people although you did with me. Maybe a little too distant. I guess that should have told me something. You made preferential distinctions between my friends and also between my friends and myself. It was so cute how you’d verify them but then tell me I needed to meet so many qualifications and be verified elsewhere for you to do the same for me (seriously, NO, it WASN’T at all cute – 5 out of the 6 people you verified had no more qualifications or verification than I did when I last checked, or did you think none of us could actually check on other platforms? You’re so funny. And by “funny,” I mean “not”). Then I noticed you only had dialog with certain ones of your friends and only promoted certain ones. Many of the people you promoted didn’t really offer much in the way of content. Some only knew how to curate links that could easily be found by using a Google search, even though you talked as though Google owed us all something for our content too. Interesting. Many times over I’ve seen evidence of favoritism that you’ve denied despite the fact that I have screen shots and proof. It was so endearing that you claimed to roll out groups in the order they were applied for (seriously, NO, it WASN’T at all endearing when I have proof of the order they were applied for and in which they were approved). I also am left wondering how much all my unpaid work in beta groups made for charity (all ad revenue went to a charity for over two months) and that was never disclosed to us. That type of lipstick on your collar made me make up my mind long ago to leave you. And if I hadn’t had children to care for, I would have left immediately. Your complete disdain from communication has been a problem from the start and I’m not the first of your members to mention it. It always seems to be a case of just “a little too little and a little too late” from you when it comes to sharing info that might have saved a relationship. Somehow you create your own problems because of it, despite having the clear means, tools, and ability to communicate effectively. So I’m leaving you too.
I can only blame myself for being hopeful and wasting more of my time and gifts than I should have on either of you. Otherwise, I was honest and as respectful and patient as any woman could be when they feel passed over. So yeah, we’re breaking up, but it’s totally on you.
P.S. I think Myspace has the last laugh.