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Influencer II

The "Community"

I was relating the latest on the ISC2 "community" to Gloria, and she noted that it has been created in the image of "social media."  Social media is, of course not designed to foster communication, but to create the illusion of social interaction, even when none is taking place.

(She was kind enough to refer to a piece I wrote 33 years ago, after I had been on the net for a few years, noting that certain design factors in messaging systems did actively foster misunderstandings.)

There have always been social aspects and interactions in all communications systems.  Email emables lots of interactions between friends, quite aside from all the business deals being arranged.  Usenet was very social.  (Possibly still is, for the 17 people who still use it.)

But the hard core social media platforms, like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram, are specifically built to make it look like you're communicating, even when you're not.

For example, there is the ease of making a post.  About anything.  Show people a picture of your breakfast.  And, the thing is, that "show people" may not be true.  Just because you've posted, doesn't mean anybody has read.  Even if you've got "friends" or "followers," are they reading what you post?  Ease of posting does not translate into ease of saying something worthwhile: it usually just makes it easier to post any random thought.  Thus making it more likely that what is posted is not worth reading.

That is true even if they "like" (or "favorite," or "kudo") your posts.  We were recently required to join Instagram in order to "follow" the kids and grandkids.  And we were instructed that Instagram etiquette requires that we "like" every post and picture.  So we do.

(Actually, "we" is misleading as well.  The account is in my name, since Gloria doesn't want to join any social media systems.  But Gloria is the one who actually checks it, "likes" everything [in my name, remember] and alerts me to any pictures that aren't just a bunch of friends sitting about a table at some generic bar.)

This etiquette about "likes" is undoubtedly by design.  You will note that there is no "dislike."  (Yes, I am well aware that a dislike button would be abused.  In a sense, that's part of my point.)  People on social media want to "like" everything so that others will "like" everything, including posts the poster has made (but that possibly nobody has even read).  "Kudos" are, therefore, pretty close to being meaningless.


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30 Replies
Newcomer III

That depends upon the user- I don't ever like things on Facebook just because.  I rarely post and I just stalk a few family members and groups that I belong to.  But I reserve liking for things I actually... like.  I'd like to think kudos in this setting would carry a bit more weight, but who really knows?

Andrea Stansbury- CISSP