In a world where social media takes over our lives, it seems all we do is overshare. I am not saying I don’t, fact of the matter is I have a profile on LinkedIn, I share videos and funny things on Facebook, I tweet my thoughts on weather and food, and take photos of things I find beautiful for Instagram. I even have a blog where I share some of my stories with the world wide web audience! However, I am a firm believer that although these platforms seem to be taking over our lives, we choose how we use them and what information we want to reveal.
I, for example, have recently made the decision to remove all my photo albums from facebook, delete all the people with whom I actually do not have a relationship at all, and only accepted as ‘friends’ in that phase of my life where it was cool to have over 1000 friends of people you’ve probably never seen in your life. I stopped discussing personal things on social media when I was around 18 years old, such as my mood, my love life, my work life, my family life. Facebook is great for me to share some hilarious videos, photos and snippets about Harry Potter and sea turtles. I erased a load of things on twitter, that I have no idea why I followed them in the first place. I have my instagram on private, so only people who are my friends are able to see and comment on my photos – aside from the instagram posts that I allow to be seen on the website. I have made a conscious and avid decision that social media would not take over my private life.
With this in mind, I am still a blogger! And share with you parts of my life, such as food, arts, travel and some thoughts and opinions on some things … such as this! I will not, however, expose my love life, family life, friendships, working life, personal tribulations with any of you. A) it is none of your business and B) why would you care? You do not know me at all! Attention seeking is a very ugly thing, but can also be a disease. I admire all the bloggers I follow for selecting their content, and keeping their privacy while still sharing some of their passion with the world and that is what I am doing.
This has all come to me, because this coming weekend I will be going abroad again for a small city break. Where you may ask? You will find out post the weekend. However, I have made a very important decision, which might seem odd, but it is making me incredibly excited for my break. I am going to shed the facebook sharing, the photo overload and boasting, the check ins and all that, and simply instagram a photo or two of the most known monuments of course. But most importantly, my digital camera is staying at home and I have invested in two disposable kodak cameras which are joining me in my trip!
I have made the informed decision, along with my partner in crime, of leaving the digital world behind and going for the pure, unadulterated image of film photography! I know the quality won’t be the same, I know that the images will fade over time and that this will make life harder in terms of showing everyone where we have been. Yet all these things excite me more than they scare me. This trip will truly feel like it is just ours because no one else will be able to revisit the places we will see and capture them in quite the same way. I will not be able to put a filter on these images, or hide the fact that I might have a spot in my forehead for most of the trip. It will all be recorded, or filmed – pun intended – for all eternity. It will be a selection of photos that when my computer breaks down, I will never lose.
Now I promise I will take some photos of my destination to do a trip review and tips on the website, but I think this is the most beautiful and unexpected idea I have had for a while. As a member of the ever growing social media society, privacy is almost a coveted thing. Something you can only aspire to have, when all things you say, think and see can be published and shared with the world. We all over share! We like to share about our disdains, our victories, our hurt and our happiness. What I have come to realise is that this is causing a lot of people to lose the ability to reflect in their own sentiments and work their stuff out on their own, seeing as when you share everyone seems to have an opinion, and worse, your thoughts can go viral! Your photo can go viral! You can become viral!
Social media cannot be dismissed anymore, it is a huge part of our world and day to day living. People that are struck by poverty and begging in the street corners of London still seem to have access to a phone and internet. Future employers will look at your social media feeds and pages, you can track someone down by their use of social media. It has opened up a whole set of doors that can be quite intimidating, but it has also paved the way for open debates, movements that start online and can have a real impact on society. Like most things, social media has its pros and cons! Where whole conversations can occur and be misinterpreted and then blown out of proportion by the media on Twitter.
I am looking forward to having minimal connection with the world and carrying this particular trip just with me and my companion. As someone who works professionally in social media, I think people need to be mindful and responsible for the content they publish and share. All things can be held against or in your favour, and the choices you make about what you publish online are very heavily weighed against you now. People get angry over things on social media, where as before everything had to be discussed in person, people get heart broken and dumped by the click of a status box on facebook. I would like to invite you all to strip your profiles to a minimum and keep your profiles as informative or simply fun tools to enjoy. Not a medium to shed your most intimate stories, relationships and secrets on. Do that with actual people, in an actual conversation! It is far more satisfying.