Social Media on Mobile – Convenience or Addiction?
By Somali K Chakrabarti
You are what you share. – C.W. Leadbeater
The above saying has gained relevance, more than ever before, in this age of social media. Breaking the barriers of age, hierarchy, gender, status and geography, social media allows us to express our views, share ideas, bridge distances and connect with like minded people.
I have to admit that I have taken to social media like a fish takes to water.
Social media has become an integral part of my life, to the extent, that a day without social media now appears to me almost like a day without electricity
Social Media on Mobile Vs Web
This was not always the case though.
Earlier my social media usage was limited to some web activity on Facebook, Blog, and LinkedIn and occasional tweets. Additionally, owing to my penchant for collecting beautiful images, sometimes I indulged in pinning pictures on Pinterest.
The scene changed drastically after I started using mobile apps on my smartphone.
Within no time, the smartphone took my social media experience to a new high!
My morning, now began with a pleasant note (err notification) on my cell, with gorgeous Good Morning pictures, beaming smileys, emojis and motivational quotes shared by friends on WhatsApp. I found myself forwarding the messages to other friends to spread a dash of cheer, right at the onset of the day. My creativity found expression with the use of emoticons and I didn’t even have to bother about call rates on social media.
During the day, I scrolled through the status updates of my friends on Facebook and contacts on LinkedIn. There was no need to remember birthdays, any more as Facebook religiously send out the birthday reminders on my cell each morning.
Social Media on Mobile Has Made Me More Agile
My travel time, now, is well spent in reading articles gleaned from different sources on reddit, scheduling tweets and updates on buffer app for sharing throughout the day, when I am offline. Content sourcing and sharing has never been easier. The moment my eyes spot anything interesting, I click pictures on my cell and quickly upload the images to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
My Twitter activity has rocketed with the use of smartphone as it allows me to set on mobile notification for tweets from specific people and I receive notifications when people quote, fav or retweet me, allowing me to respond immediately, if I wish to.
The WordPress app on my smartphone dutifully sends out notifications every time someone Likes or comments on any of my posts. It also allows me to read the new blog posts from my favorite bloggers who I follow and track the stats for my blog.
Emails, for me, are now mostly limited to formal conversations. When I want to catch up with a friend for a quick chat, WhatsApp, Hike or SnapChat are there for me.
Yet, all these options of social media on mobile have not completely lessened my love for web access on laptop. I still feel that the laptop is better for writing a blog post as this one, or for composing formal emails.
As easy as it is to be connected on social media through mobile devices, constant use of social media is also quite draining. At times, I put the cell on silent and keep it out of my reach as it becomes too intrusive when I am trying hard to focus on something and I find some hundred odd notifications lined up on my cell.
Sometimes, on receiving simultaneous notifications from different sources my cell buckles under the load of excess social media activity and hangs. To get trolled on social media can be quite taxing too. Thankfully WhatsApp and Twitter now give the provision to Mute specific contacts.
Yet, with social media on mobile it is hard to resist the temptation of checking updates on the smartphone, every now and then.
So, till now, I continue to strive to strike the balance between building my network (hopefully net worth too) on social media and reducing distraction due to my fixation with social media.
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