Tuesday, January 27, 2015
I can't think of a sentence I've ever written more bizarre than that. Why he is on Pinterest is a total mystery to me, as well as how. I guess one of his social media pals signed him up.
He’s already on Facebook. At his request a few years ago I signed him up. At first he was into it. I’d get emails from former high school girlfriends and showrunners saying, “Hey, your dad befriended me.”
God bless him that he wants to stay current. And it’s not like he’s posting baby pictures of me for TBT so I’ve got no problem. But it just speaks to how widespread this notion of social media has become.
I’m on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin. Dad on Pinterest makes more sense than me on Linkedin. I never use it except to endorse friends. I don’t think Lincoln Center is going to produce my play based on reading my Linkedin profile. I actually tried to unsubscribe to Linkedin and it won’t let me. I am signed up for life and beyond. In fact, I’ve somehow gotten “connect” requests from a person I know has died. Linkedin must really have reach.
I got on these sites initially to help drive traffic to my blog. But I must confess I spend way more time on Facebook than I anticipated. It’s nice to keep up with people who otherwise would fly under my radar. On the other hand, I never know what to do when someone announces a loved one has died or they have been diagnosed with some disease. How do you click “like?’”
I also tend not to comment on someone’s status because I then get email alerts anytime anyone else also comments. So if someone says their 104 year-old grandmother died, if I offer a condolence my in-box will be filled with 160 emails from people I don’t know also offering sympathy.
It bothers me that social media sites create whole new areas of unintentional inconsideration. I look like an asshole because I didn’t congratulate someone for some posted achievement or offer sympathy for some loss when the truth is I just wasn’t on Facebook for a few days and missed it. If someone is nominated for an Emmy and I don’t congratulate him is he going to think I’m jealous and resentful? Again, what an asshole I am! Forget that I had a power outage at my house and couldn’t get on line for two days and everything in my freezer spoiled.
And then there are Facebook friends who I am very fond of personally but think their politics are insane. So I never “like” anything they post. And eventually I become afraid of them.
When I post something I try to make it humorous. But as a comedy writer I feel almost obligated to. Plus, I don’t have cute cats so what else am I gonna post?
Same with Twitter. It’s a forum to toss out one-liners. I don’t get to hear actual laughter, but I can judge how successful the jokes are by the number of people who retweet me. Twenty retweets = one guffaw.
On Twitter I’m an asshole because I don’t automatically follow people who follow me. I don’t even know most of these people. I follow a few select folks whose tweets are either funny or about baseball. So again, I apologize. And ask you, how can you follow 10,000 people? When do you have time for anything else? And of the 10,000, how many are actually interesting? Six? Why not just follow them?
So I continue to participate in social media. You’re welcome to follow me on @KenLevine on Twitter if you so desire. I’ll try to be funny enough so you don’t unfollow me. That’s another way to judge my one-liners. I post one and a half hour later twenty people unfollow me. That also equals a guffaw, by the way.
I’m not on Pininterest yet. I’ll have to ask Dad what the advantage is.
By Ken Levine at 6:00 AM