Monday, October 09, 2006

Email Queen

According to a report from the IT director at my agency, I have seen over 7,200 emails since January! Isn't that amazing? It makes me wonder how many phone calls I've taken and how many people I've actually met with face to face. While email is definitely my preferred method of contact at work, I barely use my personal email account. I would much prefer to pick up the phone and call my friends or family (good advice for media buyers/planners: get everything written in an email and file in an organized fashion. It's saved my butt on more than one occasion).

My tendency to use email for certain types of communication reminded me of a paper I wrote for class this past summer. In the paper I predicted that social networking sites like MySpace and Facebook will decline in popularity. I believe this is because the novelty of these sites quickly wears out and its members - the young, fickle teens and 20-somethings - are always on the hunt for something more cutting edge and "off the radar." From my personal experience, MySpace was a lot of fun initially. I enjoyed seeking out my friends and viewing their profiles. It was even fun when random people requested my "friendship." At least, it was fun at first.

Forbes.com has an article about this exact topic. The article discusses how MySpace's inital user base is declining and an older demographic is taking over. It seems that current users are becoming jaded with online communication and seek something more meaningful. Gabe Henderson is quoted saying,

"The superficial emptiness clouded the excitement I had once felt. It seems we have lost, to some degree, that special depth that true friendship entails."

The timing of this article really hit home because I cancelled my MySpace account this past weekend. My profile became stagnant. I had nothing to add to it and got tired of random, sleazy guys sending me messages. No one ever contacted me for networking or to discuss shared interests. Even my *real* friends didn't use the site to contact me or send me anything truly worthwhile.

I think that while it's good to be wired and to be able to interact in more than one way, it's better to excel in the face to face and to supplement that with online communication. Until these social networking sites offer something of true value and not just a time killer, I think that each one will flourish and then fail. Any thoughts?

3 Comments:

Anonymous Visiting Michelle in 2 weeks! said...

That's too bad you cancelled your myspace account. I came across Clint's a few days ago, and it has provided me much entertainment. Of course, I have no real desire to keep looking at it. The novelty has worn off (which kind of proves your point).

If for nothing else, myspace, facebook, and the like are good for getting back in touch with people you lost touch with from high school or elsewhere. Aside from classmates.com (that you have to pay for in order to contact people, right?) those sites are the best and easiest place to do that.

LOL, and I'm sorry that I wasn't better about contacting you on myspace and sending you worthwhile things.

October 10, 2006 9:09 AM  
Blogger Michelle Marts said...

Ok, ok I take that back. You did send me worthwhile things (fake yahoo campaign pics!). But on the whole, most people send me "you got hit by the pretty bus" and "hey I play baseball for FAMU - let's hang out."

And I totally agree - it's really great for finding old friends. People I knew in elementary school have found me on facebook. But I haven't had any real conversations with those people. I'm thinking they were just trying to get as many friends as possible. Which is fine, I guess...that's just mot satisfying for me.

October 10, 2006 9:41 AM  
Anonymous Ashley said...

I couldn't sleep, so I thought to myself, "I'll check out Michelle's blog like I have been meaning to for weeks." Anyway, I really liked all your entries. You're a really great writer. Better than what I would ever do.

I agree with you on the whole MySpace/Facebook thing. However, I never really hopped on to the MySpace bandwagon, even though I have a page, I much prefer Facebook (even though they sold out, which is very disappointing).

Anyway, I'm going to try to keep up with reading your blog... I should be able to since all I do all day is lay around with my foot propped up, lol. The least I could do is keep up with my friend's blog.

October 17, 2006 6:37 AM  

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