Is there really a right or wrong in social media?Posted on Tue Jan 27 2009
"You hold your pen all funny," drawled iconic Senator Howell Heflin while I was trying to interview him for a newspaper article in 1996. "That's how I hold my pen! I've never met anyone else who holds one like that."
Just as I began to feel that this might become a bonding experience...
"Of course, I was shot in the finger during the war. What's your excuse?"
I was reminded of that moment today while reading Chris Brogan's provocative blog post, "You're doing it wrong."
With no introductory comments, Brogan posted a list of social media missteps, including:
- You follow too many people on Twitter.
- You have ads on your blog.
- You use partial RSS feeds.
- Your blog posts are too short (too long).
- You shoot really long videos and don’t edit.
- You swear.
It doesn't take long to realize that Chris is joking, or at least intentionally challenging our notions of "right and wrong" in social media.
"Guess what? We’re all doing it wrong," Chris writes. "Because we’re all doing it our own way, and it’s not always going to match the way you think it works best."
This is a fantastic point. The more we use tools like Facebook, Twitter or even just blogs, the more we all create notions of what we think is proper and what is out of bounds.
I've said before that there are no rules in social media. This is one of the best things and one of the most frustrating things about the arena I work in.
On the one hand, it can leave you paralyzed with uncertainty about what you should or shouldn't do. On the other, it can empower you to ignore the pros and pundits, so you can just be yourself. Or at least hold your pen however you damn well please.