Facebook and The Social Media Sabbath
Every once in a while I will read in a recruiting blog a posting expounding upon the need to utilize social media to attract the so called “Millennials” to career opportunities. The theory being you need to engage them where they live. While I understand using LinkedIn I have no idea what value to anyone Facebook is for recruiting. I can go further and question its’ value to anyone.
I joined Facebook about 8 years ago. The only reason I joined is my niece created a Facebook page for the family poodle Rocky. In order to keep up with Rocky I reluctantly joined.
Occasionally I have family, friends and past acquaintances request that I friend them. I do not want to insult them so I accept their offer. I have never tried to friend someone nor have I ever posted something on my Facebook page.
I understand the original intent Facebook, if I believe the book and movie, was a way for people attending a university to find out about and communicate with fellow students. It expanded from one university to the next. I find this as a perfectly acceptable use. It was a closed network with a common interest. Next came using Facebook to allow close friends and family to exchange pictures and important updates. Once again this is acceptable to me. From there it grew into a phenomenon to the extent that you almost do not exist if you are not on Facebook. There is no internal filter for people as to what is important enough to post. It is used to document every moment of their lives.
Due to constant badgering from Facebook every few weeks I go onto the site. There, I see such highly important posts such as sports games scores, pictures of my “friends” eating or informing me that they are at the local mall or truly life shattering posts such as what they are cooking for dinner. Each time I go on Facebook I think I want the 15 minutes of my life back that I have just wasted.
I used to wonder what do Facebook “friends” do when they are actually together in real life? What do they talk about when every moment in their lives has already been shared? My observation is that they all sit together silently interacting with their mobile device. In other words, they are on Facebook. Perhaps they take a picture of themselves and post it on the site. Some may be on Twitter or just plain texting. Talking is limited to showing each other what is on their phone screens at the moment.
I also see that people now do things in order to have “Facebook moments”. If they go to a museum, concert, etc. they are posting and selfieing so they can document it in Facebook. It is more important to document the moment then actually live it.
I find it a little ironic that there is discussion about the NSA and the rights to our privacy. The NSA does not need to tap your phone to learn about your activity, all they need to do is go to your Facebook page and they will see your timeline of location and who you were with.
People looking for jobs, beware! Potential employers are looking at your social media activity. Do not post things you would not want a future employer to see.
Let’s have a Social Media Sabbath
I Would like to propose a solution
I know a lot of people no longer celebrate a religious Sabbath. Instead, or in conjunction with, I propose a social media Sabbath. Choose a 24 hour period. I don’t care what day you choose as long as it is a contiguous 24 hours where you will turn off all social media. That means no texting, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or social e-mail. Instead, you will you have real interaction with real people. Actually talk to them. You will go out and smell the roses, not take pics of them with the purpose of posting them later. In other words, you will live like your ancestors did in a pre-digital world.
I know it will be hard in the beginning. You will have the fear of missing out. But I think eventually you will get used to it and start to realize that you are more than a Facebook page and real human interaction is what makes us whole.
Paul Shanfeld is Vice President; Recruitment at Tech Career Search, Inc. (www.techcareersearch.com). Paul spent over 20 years in the Wireless Industry working for some of the most recognizable names in the industry. He has held executive positions in sales, marketing, product management, business development and strategic planning.
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