In fact, while messing around the other day in the Internet Archive Wayback Machine for something unrelated to this blog, I found a logo from 10 years ago for an online group of bloggers who committed to using words kindly.
Although I’d forgotten about it, I was part of that group.
• • •
We were an optimistic bunch.
We sincerely thought that blogging would evolve into a source of respectful understanding and positive connections among people in this world.
I’m charmed by the naiveté of it all. Especially in light of the past few week’s endless noise on FB and vitriol on Twitter.
But of course those social media didn’t exist when this group formed, so we had no idea about what was coming.
• • •
I rarely long for the good ole days.
I realize that it’s easy to idealize remembrances of times past, and that these remembrances are often irrelevant when it comes to the issues of the day.
I’m a realist. What was, isn’t.
But in this one case, regarding social media, I’m going to suggest that stepping back from how we as a society now do things would be a good idea. The 24/7 insatiable need to be noticed and adored, which is how social media works currently, is not the best way to connect.
In contrast, looking back to 10 years ago, I remember how early blogging worked. It was a heady experience that focused on authentic connections with other people, rather than the care and feeding of your ego.
• • •
I know that I’m preaching to the choir here.
And that my small voice of reason is going to be drowned out by the selfie-absorbed, the narcissists, the haters, the trolls. But occasionally I like to believe that I might influence someone in a positive way that encourages him or her…
To cool it with the focusing on what’s wrong with other people.
And instead, perhaps even– to say something kind to, and about, someone else.