A moment of confession: I harbor some uncertainties about my participation in social media. These uncertainties stem from something deeper than social media itself, rooted in questions of relationship, authenticity, marketing and self-promotion, what it means to earn money as a content creator, and more.
At heart, this article is my own exploration into some of the questions that swirl in the back of my brain, in an attempt to clarify the answers and to solicit feedback from you, the reader, in hopes of gaining a wider perspective.
Social media could be defined as the collection of internet based tools that allow us to connect and interact socially with one another. Like any tool, it’s essence is that of utility. That being said, as far as human socialization goes, the healthiest relationships exist at the antipodes of utility. Utility is always a means to some other end, and treating people in the manner of a means to an end only leads to destructive relationships.
So what is social media actually for, and is there a purpose to gaining many followers? Depending how one approaches it, a social network may be either for socializing, or for networking, or some combination of the two. It’s this combination that seems to turn things fuzzy for me. Also, money – another element of utility in our world.
As I move increasingly into the world of content creation, my ability to draw an income from my efforts ties directly to the size of my network and the number of those that not only follow me, but that consume what I produce. To put it bluntly: Content creators depend on content consumers.
Writing has always been a passion, and something I mainly pursued in the past without too many thoughts of remuneration. While SteemIt appears to offer some glimmer of hope in getting paid for my writing, it has also dawned on me that I have so far woefully neglected any real effort at building an audience… [This article originally appeared on Steemit.com. Continue reading here …]