Overcoming Social Media Addiction Part #5: An experiment

While part 1 I outlined the basic problem with social media, part 2 was a reflection on my own problematic media usage and parts 3 and 4 detailed the changes I want to make. This part reflects on an experiment in using social media in a planned and healthy way.

Overcoming social media addiction a self portrait

The Experiment

I quit my social media accounts for the reasons stated in the linked posts. But then I thought that maybe I can use these services in a responsible and healthy way. My main goal was to promote this blog on different social media outlets. I signed up new accounts for Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Reddit. My goal for Twitter and Pinterest was to mainly promote this website. My goal for Instagram was also promotion and to connect with local photographers. I wanted to use Reddit to connect with other Bloggers and Photographers. Here is what happened:

Results #1: Instagram

I use Instagram sparingly. Maybe once a day. I try to actually comment on other peoples images and I feel like it makes them happy. I did get to know a local blogger / photographer group which will hopefully meet in real life soon. I have curated my feed very very carefully with inspiring photographers, locals or people I actually know somehow. I don’t get much traffic from Instagram but still I mostly post pictures from my articles here as teaser. I also found a way to use Instagram on my computer instead of the app which I have not installed. I rarely watch their videos or reels. I think I will keep my account. It is nice to stay in touch with locals and share images. I am not spending much time to “up my Insta game” or research hashtags.

Results #2: Pinterest

I read that Pinterest is a good way to promote a blog. I do not get this social media channel. How does one use Pinterest? I will delete my account.

Results #3: Reddit

I signed up for Reddit to follow communities about blogging, SEO, photography or vintage lenses. It can be a useful source of information but it does not pay off to read it daily. I check in from time to time and whenever an interesting topic crops up I’ll save it and check back later to read the responses from others. Reddit is still on probation for me but I might just keep it whenever I want to easily check certain communities or maybe ask a question. I have not installed the app.

Results #4: Twitter

I wanted to use Twitter to promote new blog posts. On occasion when I had a thought and I was sitting at my computer I quickly typed out a tweet. I never had the app installed. Two things happened. Or rather one happened and the other did not. No one cared about my tweets promoting my blog posts. I think Twitters algorithm does not really like these automated posts. They do not generate controversy and what is called “engagement”. What happened though is that whenever I opened Twitter it sucked me into the controversy of the day, which is mostly Covid politics at the moment. And this became an unhealthy obsession pretty quickly. So Twitter has got to go. Despite some brave and interesting people there I consider Twitter the cesspool of the online world. I think the world would indeed be a better place without it.

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