Monday, January 13

The Audience Is Listening

While seeing the start of the "I don't care about football, shut up" posts at Facebook-and having the base response: Yes, we should all stop liking what you don't care about. I had a thought, during the exchange. 

The reply was: "More like quit talking to me about blahblahblah," to which I replied: 'But it's Facebook. Nobody talks here."

I was struck shortly thereafter that internet environments are more like a show: you have a platform, you speak, everyone-regardless of their interest in your subject matter-is compelled to give it a little bit of their attention. 

I don't care about the Smiths, or Morrissey at all, or circumcision or GMOs or Gay for Johnny Depp, I don't give a fuck about your 600th baby photo, how she looked when she pooped while Grandma held her, or your toddler's sudden ability to say the word 'shit'. There are a whole host of things spoken of that people put out there in hopes that their lives will seem to be as important to other people as they are to themselves. 

You know who finds my life as important as their own? My parents. I think the list ends there. Everyone else who knows me, should they friend me on Facebook? Or here, or any of the other places I write: they are accepting the part of audience member. There are two things to keep in mind, as a result. 

First; I need to be respectful of my audience. This is just a good idea in general but for me, in addition to the basic 'be kind, be honest' motto, it also means not boring them (much) with post after post after post of the exact same concept. There a whole lot of interesting things to talk about in the world, and I should try and shake it up when I can. 

Second: in for a penny, in for a pound. If you are part of the audience, then you just have to put up with some of the deluge of boredom that can come when someone else is super excited about something that you have no emotional investment in. On the upside, there are some tools that can help filter that out, but on the downside those filters are pretty weak and they won't stop everything. So you're just going to have to accept being annoyed from time to time. 

And that's just tough shit, man. Welcome to life. You can choose to be annoyed or you can choose to appreciate the pleasure someone else is taking in something that you may not really care about. Click the 'do not show' button and move on. 

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