Social Media for Humans

Cyclical social media with Sabrina B

June 17, 2022 Alexis Bushnell Season 2 Episode 16
Social Media for Humans
Cyclical social media with Sabrina B
Show Notes Transcript

From cancel culture and being "problematic" to the politics of social media and so much more, I was thrilled to chat with Sabrina B (she/her) about the nuance of social media, the gray areas and seeing it as not all bad - but not all good either!

Sabrina B. is a tarot reader, workshop facilitator, and podcaster. She is also a novice herbalist who takes pride in being of service to her community. When she is not working, she's intentionally embodying the principles of cyclical living while trying to detach herself from capitalist conditioning.

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- [Hawke] Hello, and welcome to "Social Media for Humans," the podcast that empowers you to do social differently. Your host, Alexis Bushnell, and her guests discuss their experience of social media as business owners, users, and ultimately, humans. With insights and advice to help you find an effective and ethical strategy that works for you. Grab yourself a drink and join the conversation. - Hello, hello, welcome back. I am here with fabulous Sabrina. Do introduce yourself, tell us who you are, what you do. - Hello, hello. Yes, my name is Sabrina B. I use she/her pronouns. And who am I, and what do I do? I like to think of myself as a multifaceted multi-passionate community member. I do a lot of odds and ends, and bits and bobs, but the core of it is I'm a Tarot reader. I do workshops and small group community things surrounding spirituality, and the woo, particularly cyclical living is like, my big push at the moment. And then I also, on the other hand, am a podcaster, and I work in audio, and I love storytelling. So if you want your cards read, if you want to talk about alternative living, and lifestyles, and connecting to the cycles and the seasons, or if you want me to edit some audio, those are all within my wheelhouse. - That is a wide variety of things. - It is, it is. (laughs) - And before I hit Record, we were discussing partly, especially like Instagram, but people who are sort of moving off social media. There's a lot of people I speak to, and you've said, you've seen it a lot as well, who are like, I hate Instagram now, I hate social media. I don't wanna be on these platforms. These platforms are toxic. They're not a fun place to be whatever, whatever. And what are your thoughts on this? Let's start there. What do you think about that? - It's interesting. And I wanna preface this with the idea that I personally ascribe to both/and thinking, and I think this is actually one of the reasons why people are trying to get off of social media, particularly Instagram. I know TikTok's a very toxic place for a lot of people. I don't spend a lot of time on there anymore, is, a lack of both/and thinking, right? Someone posts something about something specific, and then everyone is talking about, and pointing out, here's the conditions that you didn't meet. Here's the other scenarios that you didn't account for. And it's this idea that you can't both talk about one thing, without talking about the other, or if you talk about one thing, you can't care about the other. I personally ascribe to both/and thinking, so I'm gonna get my disclaimers out of the way, right? Like, there is harassment on social media. There is a lot of access. People have a lot of access to you on social media that you may, that wouldn't feasibly have access to you in real life, right? There are a lot of really tangible reasons, and harmful reasons why people are getting off of social media, and I see that, and I hold that, and that's so fair. I also think there are people who are feeling the effects of an environment that's not that fun for them on social media, but in a way that is a sort of grass is greener scenario, where they think that those same things wouldn't reproduce themselves in the real world. And, I think it's a give and take. I do think there are ways in which social media, as a constructed space is coded, and structured in a way that doesn't lend itself to respectful, helpful community connection, and peaceful conversation. We talk about algorithms pushing things that get clicks, and that's things that make people angry. And that's things that get people riled up. And that's things that, because being outraged also releases, it releases a lot of cortisol, a lot of stress hormones, but it also releases some pleasure hormones, too. People get, there's a sort of momentum that comes with being upset, but that is a problem with how social media is constructed, but also is just how humans are, right? Because at the end of the day, the algos are pushing what gets clicks. Well, who are clicking? Human beings. Human beings are getting hormone spikes when they are seeing inflammatory posts, they are spending more time debating their uncle who posted something that made them angry, than lifting up their friend, who's posting about their celebrations. That's a human nature thing. That's also something that you can find in real life, right? And I think that's what I'm talking about, this grass is greener situation, where yeah, there are a lot of people on the internet that just wanna watch the world burn, in the same way that in your hometown, or in your high school, there's always that person who wants to start things, or there's always that person who's gossiping, right? But there's a lot more on the internet. It's easier for them to find each other, and it's easier for them to be efficient in that work. And if that's something that you're trying to run away from, right, then more power to you, right? But it's one of those things where it's like, I hate Facebook because every single aunt, and uncle, and grandma, and my mom are on there and we're always fighting. You might have a family where your entire extended family is across the world, and very disparate, and very disconnected, and Facebook, the only place where you connect. And yes, getting off of Facebook will disconnect you from them. But for example, if you are one of those people who live in a smaller town, or relatively close to your family, and you see them on Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and whatever national holiday marks the commemorative day of whatever country you live in, right, what is leaving Facebook doing for you? Because this is, again, a grass is greener situation, because you're just gonna be sitting at the dinner table, having these arguments. And I think for me, it turns into this idea of kind of stepping away from the symptom instead of addressing the problem, which is either learning how to set better boundaries with those people in your life who are making you upset, or being able to more holistically address those conversations. For example, when I was in high school, talking about real life interactions, going back to the real world, and, it's gonna be so much better than social media. I was that kid where I was like friends with my teachers, and at lunch, or after school, or before school, I'd like sit in their classrooms, and do homework, or like eat snacks or whatever. And I remember I was in one teacher's classroom. And, I think they forgot that I was in the room. It was me and a friend, and we were just kinda like sitting there and I think they forgot that I was in the room, and another teacher came in to talk to talk to them. And it was after a weekend, and there was an event happening around, just around outside of the school, like just people out and about in their lives, and the two teachers went to this event, and they saw another teacher there. They ran into a third teacher, and these first two teachers were talking about like, oh my God, and did you see what the third teacher was wearing? And the third teacher kept trying to talk to us, and the third teacher kept trying to wave at us, and like, we don't even wanna talk to you here, and I can't believe that we ran into them. And I was astounded. 15 year old, 16 year old me, my idea of adults was shattered because, and I didn't even really have a rough high school experience, right. But high school's kind of catty. Everyone's trying to figure out how to be in the world. You're like stuck with these people that you've possibly been stuck with since kindergarten, you know, we're all itching to get out, and just to see the same social, gossipy, catty dynamics that I thought that just once you had space, and you could like choose, like agency, these teachers had so much choice, you know? And they're still coming back to, did you see what she was wearing? Why was she talking to me? Why would she approach us? We don't even like her. And then back to like, did you see the lesson plan? And blah, blah, blah. It's just the way that, I don't wanna say the way that people work, but going back to this idea that, depending on what it is that you dislike about social media, you removing yourself from it is not going to address the issue. And that's not me trying to say that you have to stay on it, just to be a martyr or to suffer. But it's just acknowledging that point, that, you can still leave Instagram, but just be aware that if you're leaving Instagram because of interpersonal interactions, those interactions will most likely repeat themselves in whatever coffee shop, or friend group, or a workplace, or hobby setting that you're entering. And, both/and. I don't think we should connect to the metaverse, and never go to the park again. I very much recommend that people disconnect, and go out, and take a walk if you can. But this complete, I guess, turning back on social media, as though that is, in itself, the problem, when really it's just being in community is hard. I think that's what I'm trying to say. I'm going around in circles. My idea is just like, being in community is hard, and people are finding that being in social media community is very difficult. And I think there are very specific aspects of being on social media that can amplify certain areas of communal conflict for people. And that can be tough to navigate, but moving into the real world, is not going to absolve those problems, because that's just an issue with being in community. And if anything, and this is something I mentioned before we hit Record, it can be worse. Because on social media, you can block people. You can make new accounts. You can leave Instagram, but choose Tumblr. You can leave Tumblr and move to Reddit. Those people might follow you, but you can, you know, move around. There's a lot more space. If you live in your town, and someone has it out for you, are you gonna move? You could, but that is so much of a bigger uptake than, deactivate my account, delete my data, let me move to this different platform. And yeah, everyone needs to make the decisions that are best for them. But I do think there's a push for people who are, all the woes they're experiencing on social media, social media is amplifying human habits, and the ways that humans relate to each other. And there's an aspect of that, that is catty. And there's an aspect of that, that can be mean-spirited, but that's outside of social media, that's a community issue, you know? - Yeah, yeah, no, I do. I know what you mean. And one of the, one of the things that frustrates me the most, when I see all of the commentary about how toxic social media is, how bad social media is for people, how bad for people's mental health it is, how social media is the problem, is that, there is never attached to that a discussion of how powerful it is for people, especially from marginalised communities, to find their people now. If you have lived previously in a small town, and you are a queer person, and everybody around you is anti-queer, and they do not believe that queer people should be allowed to exist, and they are voting against your rights, you, it's really difficult to get out of that situation. If you can connect to a community online, and you find people who are like you, and not just other queer people, but other queer people from that background, who have been there, who can advise you on how to get through it, on where to get support, and that kind of thing, there is this, always, that is missed out of the conversation. It's always, it is wholly bad for everybody. And actually that's just not true. And there are definitely issues, like you say, with social media, it has made, it has amplified, like you say that some of the issues of interpersonal communication that humans have. But it also has given rise to communities being able to connect where they couldn't before, you know? It has saved lives, it has improved people's lives. And I do think a lot of this discussion that happens about, social media is bad, comes from people who have rather a lot of privilege, and who haven't had to connect to people online. They haven't had that experience of, I'm the outsider. I'm the one who is not accepted in my location, in where I actually live. I am the one who is different from my family, my spiritual community, my whoever, my school, my, whatever it is. And so they have never had that experience of, I am totally alone in this. I am totally different. I have nobody. Because I think when you are that person, and you get online, and you find that, not only is there somebody else, but there is a whole community, like there's a vibrant community with its own culture, that is supporting each other, that has history, and a future, and support, and all of these things, that is so powerful. - I think there's a palpable point that you have there, too, about people with possibly more privilege could be the people who are a part of this social media exodus, because they feel, or they know, 'cause they have lived experience, that moving back into the real world, wherever they're located, wherever they're rooted, is a safe space for them, and they can find community, or navigating those difficult spaces feel easier. I also wonder, too, from that idea of privilege and again, back to both/and thinking, right? This idea of people with privilege in a location might also be people who exist in a location with people who think, and act, and move similarly to them. And social media also opens you up to a lot of different perspectives, and a lot of different conversations. And there's something to be said about, for example, arguments over identifiers or over language in some contexts, I think, forgets that we all live in different spaces, and have different lived experiences in learnings. I see this a lot in disability spaces, and chronic illness spaces, where someone will use a term, and someone else will come in and say, that term is wrong because, or here's why you can't say this in this way, or this in that way. And that person will turn around, and will, the original poster and say, well, I actually live with this or, I'm not trying to, to co-sign the, "I have a Black friend" argument, so this is fine, but I think there's a level of people who are, have very close family members, or very close friends, right, where it's less so, you know, I have a Black friend, so this is why I'm an authority just by proximity. But no, like I have a brother, or I have a best friend, and this is how they have asked me to address them. This is how they want me to speak about them. We've had conversations about this. This is how they wanna be spoken about in our community, even more so, maybe it's a community where that's the only person who maybe uses a wheelchair, or is in crutches, or uses a walker. So that whole community has honed in on this one person's needs. Right? And then someone's posting about something based on that experience that they have with their friend. And then someone else on the internet is like, the way you're talking about this is wrong. But that person's context is that one friend, right? And I think there's elements of interaction on social media that treats, for example, Instagram, or TikTok, or whatever platform, as though it's one location with one shared understanding, and everyone needs to conform to that understanding, when really, it's kind of like an airport. Like we're all flying in from different places on our way to other places. So that's why, you know, Australian might say thong for flip-flops, and I say flip-flops. So if they say thong, I'm thinking underwear, they're thinking shoes, that's both/and. Thong can be both, right? But with more terms. So there's that, that's one of the ands. But coming back to the privilege point, I think there's this other aspect of people who maybe are coming from communities that are more curated to them in their experience. And then they enter a social sphere where they maybe say things that are more true to the, for example, I have a Black friend argument, where it's like, well, there's this Black person at my grocery store, so I feel entitled to talk about the whole Black experience, and people are approaching them and saying, actually, your outlook on this thing, or how you speak about this thing, you might wanna reconsider. Or you might wanna reconsider how you present it in this space. And I think that also comes from that idea of privilege in the social media exodus, is, you're talking about the privilege to return to the real life community, and have that community. And I'm also thinking of that idea of people of privilege maybe not being used to being challenged on their ideas that come from their privilege, and it's uncomfortable. And they're like, why is everyone attacking me? (laughs) And it's like, it's a give and take, and it's a both/and, and it's like, maybe people aren't attacking you, maybe they're just trying to call you in. But then also there's a level of the people coming on to someone else's post, and trying to push their own worldview on someone who has their own lived experiences and expectations. And that's why it's so messy. Messy, messy, messy, 'cause the line is thin. The line is thin. - Yeah, yeah it is. And I do think it is, because, there is a lot of hate for the cishet white man at the moment, you know, there is a lot of hate, and I think a lot of it is that messiness. It is cishet white men coming from communities where they are the authority, where people listen to them, where people don't question them, where most other people are cishet white men. And that is what they are used to and they are, they're just never challenged on those things. And it is, when you are challenged on your, because it's not just, oh, maybe there are other alternative viewpoints. It's maybe I have been moving through the world in a way that has caused harm. Maybe I have been part of the problem. Maybe my worldview is based on things that are not actually reflected in reality, or certainly not in other people's reality. And that's a really, really hard thing to deal with. Like that's scary. So when I think when people are challenged on things that many of us are just like, this is just human rights, like this is just, this is a human rights issue. This is be a decent person issue. If you have not got that understanding of what is really going on, if you have never questioned that, it can feel terrifying to even entertain the idea that actually wow, everything I thought about the world is wrong. And on the other side of that is, a lot of people on social media are so used to dealing with people who are yelling, who are just posting their hot take because they want to be spicy and get some engagement. And people who just wanna put their opinion out there and don't really care about what is true and what is not, or having a conversation, and so a lot of people approach all posts about anything with attack. And that's a problem too, because like, that's never gonna change people's minds. Like, yelling at people is never like, that's never gonna be the way. Nobody's gonna get yelled at and go, oh yeah, no, you're right, you're right. Yeah okay, I concede. (laughs) That's just not how it happens. And this is where it gets even messier, is because, of course all of the social issues we have are kind of amplified on social media, because it is just always everywhere. Everybody has an opinion about it. And if you don't have an opinion about it, people want you to have an opinion about it. And so it is, it is this kind of balance between saying, almost tone policing, and saying, you know, look, maybe don't yell at everybody. Maybe give people the benefit of the doubt, and also saying, maybe open your mind before you log on to social media, and have, hold space for the fact that you might be wrong. There might be alternative lived experiences, and ideas, and things going on that you have not been aware about. But come at it from a human-to-human perspective, and I think this is another thing that often gets lost on social media, whereas, if you are in the pub, say, and somebody is having a discussion about how they are an expert in racism because of their Black friend, it's pretty unlikely that you are gonna insert yourself into that situation, and start yelling about like the realities of racism, and citing statistics, and pulling out your flip chart to show the receipts, you know? That's generally not how that goes. Like, if you were in that situation, I think, most people, if they wanted to engage that person, would wait until they went to the bar, and have a quiet word, or wait until they went outside, and broach it in a softer manner, if you will. And online, we don't, we're just not doing that. We're just, (laughs) we're just not. And some of it, again, is just, we are overstimulated online. We are, we get on to, especially Twitter, and we are bombarded with, everybody else's ideas, and all the facts, and all of these things. And we are immediately in that space of like, almost high alert, and like attack, must defend myself even. And it does make it difficult to sort of just slow down and go, okay. These are other people on the end of these tweets or posts, and how do I actually wanna engage with them? Do I want to engage with them at all? Or is this something I can leave, because maybe somebody else will do it. Maybe they are a better place to do it. It doesn't always have to be me. - Yeah, no, I totally agree. And I think it's interesting, 'cause you were talking about the unlikelihood of someone just walking up to someone, and starting to yell at them. I live in a major metropolitan city. If you go to the downtown core, or the downtown square, or we have a mall, and that's where you go, and there's like buskers, and someone rapping, and someone's preaching about the end times, right? I'm not taking all of that in. There is literally someone walking up and down the street, screaming in everyone's faces about doom and gloom. And this is what you need to do to save your soul, and what have you, I'm not going to sit there for eight hours, and debate this person on whether or not the earth is flat, and if I need to repent by eating five alligators, and doing a back flip, you know what I mean? So it's very interesting that there's this online phenomena that, the equivalent of the yelling angry person in the town square, that there is a, there are people out there who exist that might sit down and debate that person. But a lot of us are not that person. A lot of us have other things to do, right? And that idea doesn't come across the same way on social media. And it's very, very interesting. And I think that is a benefit of that comparison to real life, right. I was talking about the nostalgia for the real world. This idea that the moment I log off, and I start going to groups in person again, all of these interpersonal issues are gonna fall away. No, I remember exactly your pub example. I remember being in college, and there was a student space that we'd all hang out in, and there was like different groups of people who would sit in different parts of the room. And sometimes people would be having conversations with their friends on the other corner of the building, it's one big room with half walls or whatever in the other side of the building, in this big room, and you could hear them. And you know, me and my friends would be kind of like, oh my God, they're so loud. Why are they? This is a very private thing they're talking about, and now we all need to hear about it. But we're not gonna go over there, and now have a huge debate, right? And I think even this idea, and this is my kind of style, so I'm gonna kind of bring it to your show, is, giving people tangible examples to walk away with, if they're like, I wanna make my relationship with social media better, but I don't know where to start. Think about the archetypes that you have where you live, or pre-being stuck inside, if you're still stuck inside. Like, think about the types of people that you would encounter in your day. Or think about your stereotypical American high school from the movie, with the football, and the sports ball, and the cheerleaders, and the goths, and the whatever. Right? And there's yelling person in the middle of the town square, that mean girl who, from kindergarten, you don't know what you did, maybe you ate her dinosaur cracker, she's had it out for you for 30 years, right? Your grandma who means well, but always criticises you when you come up. Like think of all of these archetypes, and think about how you would react to them in real life. Most of the time, with most of these people, think about fight, flight, freeze, fawn, whatever. Most of us just flee, we're like, I don't wanna have this conversation. I don't wanna deal with this person. Mean girl walks down the hallway, you turn around, you go down like another, you don't wanna have that interaction, right? And then as you move through Instagram, move through TikTok, you come across mean girl, you come across yelling guy. Not all of these people need your attention, right? In this moment, at all? You might say one thing, and then move on, right. So that would be my tangible thing. And I also would say, going back to that example of like, that student space I spent a lot of time in, I would turn to my friends, and we would have our own mini conversation, and then we'd just like, move on. Like bringing back the idea of the group chat, or like the small personal counsel, right? And I think there's, there is the, for the group chat specifically, particularly as hosted on the internet through text messages or whatever, I think that idea has been kind of poisoned, because I do think that, back to this idea of social media squabbles, we've seen time and time again, friendships blow up, and then like texts get leaked, and like what have you, and whatever. And I think there's also not a lot of online etiquette, because things are so permanent. And that can be tough. And you know, people say things in private conversation that are like really terrible, particularly as someone who has a lot of intersecting identities, I've seen reports, like, when, I forget who it was, you would know this better, but that person in Britain who had a lot to say about Meghan Markle, and then all those texts got leaked and issues like, being really racist, right? But I do think there's something to be said about private conversations versus public spectacle. Right? And, that's a whole bigger conversation. But even outside of that, if you're like, well, I don't wanna step into a group chat because I don't know if I'm gonna say something today that's fine, but that tomorrow is gonna be blasted everywhere. That could be a benefit of returning to real life, right? Returning to people in your community. Cause then instead of yelling at that person on Instagram, you bookmark that post. And then when you go get coffee with Lauren, you pull up your folder and you both just have like, social media venting time. And you're like, this person posted this, and I thought it was dumb, and this person posted this, and I thought that it was this, and then you move on, you know? - Yeah. And I think that that's actually an interesting idea of like, actually discussing those things in person with sort of your own community and your people, Because I think as well, you are more likely to learn something that way. Obviously, depending on who those people are that are around you, but if you have friends who have, even sort of slightly varying ideas and identities, it can be really helpful to, say, you pull up that post that you read and were like, oh, this is so racist, for example, and you show it to your Black friend, and they're like, yeah, no, that wouldn't bother me at all, and here's why. And it can, you can have that conversation in a way that, you are in a safe space to change your mind. And also you can learn and not sort of incur the wrath, if you like, of, what is this, you know, the social media mob of, you're wrong on the internet. - I don't wanna, I wanna give you your space, but I don't wanna forget this idea, 'cause you were saying, you know, finding something you think is racist, you wanna talk about it, you bring it up to your friend, and friend's like, no, actually. I think another thing, and this ties back to that example that I was using with disability, and you might have that one person in your town, 'cause your town's whatever size demographics, and everyone in the town caters to that person and that person's needs, 'cause they're the one person who uses those identifiers, who has that aid, or what have you, right? I think it also goes back to this question of, what are we doing here, and what are we doing this for? And I think it's so interesting, because I have seen, in threads personally, as a Black person, right? Someone has said something in the comments, a commenter comes in, and they're like, this is so offensive. I'm going to forward this to the Black delegation, and we're gonna come and find you, and that's, that's my own joke that, like, there's the Black caucus and we all meet once a year. Anyway, it's not true, it doesn't happen. But you know, someone comments and they're like, this is how you've offended me and my whole line. And then another person comes on the thread, and they're like, well I'm a Black person, and I don't care. And then a third person comes on the thread, and they're like, well you're from this country, and you're half Black and that person's full Black, and they're from this country. So like you, and this, and this, and that. And then now you have a comment thread of 25 people, some of whom are Black, then there's like always this one person, who's like, I don't really know if I should be taking up space in this conversation. Self-identification, I'm this, this, this and this. I'm not Black, but I just, and then it's like a whole thing. And I really loved that idea of bringing that conversation in person, not to, and I know there's gonna be someone listening to this and be like, are you saying that the Black friend needs to do the labour, and every time you bring a post, you have to bring it to your Black friend, and they have to explain, like, stop. Anyway, because, within every group there's gonna be people who agree and disagree. Like there's no, that's the joke. There is no Black caucus. There is no Black delegation. You can have three Black people, and again, there's always gonna be things that are just like objectively harmful, that are just like objectively offensive, right? And then there's gonna be these other things where someone's like, I don't really care. And someone else is like, this is super offensive, and you're not gonna appease 5,000 Black people. But it's valuable to know how your Black friend feels about this, because that is a connection. That is, we talk about so many atrocities in the world. There's so much that's going on. It's really heavy. What is the one thing that you can do? Right? And I do think that's something that the internet and social media can make more difficult, is that, you can have the voice of 5,000 X, or 2000 Y, or even just 50, you talk about this all the time in your trainings, and particularly for businesses, that everyone's like, only 20 people saw my post, only 100 people saw my post. What if, I live in a major metropolitan city. Like, my apartment's not that big. If there are 20 people in my apartment at once, that would be overwhelming. 100 people could not fit in my apartment safely and effectively, right? So even just 50, 100, 75, like, we're not necessarily built, and we don't have, talking about the private versus public conversations, like, social media etiquette and training, we're not built to hold that many opinions at once. So, talking about, what is the one small thing you can do, again, like, you can't appease all of these people. I don't know if you should. Particularly when it turns into a conversation where there's so much varied opinion, right? If you say like a slur, and there's 100 people commenting on your post, and 99.9% of the people are like, this is offensive, and 1% is like, I don't care. Maybe don't use the outlier case as a defence of your actions. But if 20 people, 20% say this, 30% say this, 40% whatever, go back to the people in your life. 'Cause you don't know these other people from Adam. You could not, you don't know their faces from a hole in the wall, right? So that is an idea that I just, I didn't wanna forget that idea, of marrying the real and the social, is, you can use conversations happening on social media, to inform and better approach the established relationships in your life, or even the Black friend that you've never met in real life that's on social media, but that's the person that you connect with to have this conversation. - Yeah, yeah, and I think that actually leads on to a discussion about how social media, on social media, we so want, just on social media, just in life now, we so so want there to be one answer. We so want there to be, this is right, and this is wrong. This is okay to say, this is not okay to say. And, it really, really frustrates me, because it does kind of assume that, every group, so all Black people, all queer people, all trans people, all refugees, all these specific groups, all just have one thought. They all think exactly the same thing about that topic. And that's a problem in itself. Because that kind of removes that understanding that they are complex human beings. Like all of us are, you know? This desire for, I just want there to be the right answer, you know? I said this thing, was it okay? Well maybe it's in the grey area. You know? If you've got, you know, 50% of the people in your comments are saying, this is awful, and 50% are like, I don't care, and they're all from the group that you have potentially offended, maybe it's just something that isn't, I don't wanna say that big a deal, because often it is a big deal to a group of those people, and not to others, but like maybe it's just that grey area. And we really struggle now, I think, to find the nuance, and to find those grey areas, and to go, well, maybe this isn't the hill I'm gonna die on. (laughs) Maybe this is not the thing I have to get perfect. I'm doing quotes for people who are listening. (laughs) You know? And, there are obviously, like you say, big issues that there is a consensus of opinion on. There are big things, and there are steps that we can take, and things we can learn, and things we can do, but there are also a lot of things that we kind of have to just be okay with, we're gonna get yelled at by some people for that, and it doesn't mean that we did a bad thing, and it doesn't mean that we don't support that community. It means that that community is made up of a lot of different people, with a lot of different ideas, and all of those ideas are totally okay. And I can't, I can't please all of them. I'm never gonna put out a post that is okay with absolutely all of them, and that's okay. - Yeah. And I think it's interesting, 'cause there's been a lot of work, and a lot of posts about accountability, and accepting when you've done something wrong, and how to make amends, and how to apologise. And I think we're now kind of moving into a space where, where there's an opening, if anyone's looking for a business, a niche, where we now need to have this conversation about what if you haven't necessarily done anything wrong, but people are still upset? And I think this goes to this idea of moralising things that don't need to be moralised, that's happening on social media. And I think there's so many different reasons for this. One of it, honestly, truly, I think part of the power, but also the overwhelm of the internet writ large, not just social media, is that, we can hold so much information. And, a part of holding so much information, is holding a lot of injustice. And I think a lot of people don't know where to put that, or don't know how to do anything actionable. 'Cause a lot of the things that really are moral conundrums, big moral issues, are things that are hard to touch, right? It's hard to contact CEOs who are exploiting people, or who run companies that are irresponsibly extracting from the earth, or senators who leave their citizens to struggle in climate crises, and then they take their private jets to somewhere that's not being affected, you know? Not talking about anyone specific, of course. And I've used this example before, but I follow someone and I really love their posts and the way that they set up the storytelling of their family and their life. And I looked at their story one day, and people were clamouring to ask them to make a comment on quilt coats, because, and I'm not a quilter, I'm not a knitter, I'm not a crafty person in that way. But think of a quilt that blanket people add squares and patches to, and people can do it over generations, and people were, or are, I guess, in this community, turning them into coats, and jackets, and like wearables instead of just blankets. And there's a lot of strong opinions about that. There's a hashtag quilt coats must die. That's the thing, right? Like, I am not in the quilting community. I am not in the sewing community. And I now know the ins and outs of this drama, right? (laughs) And then that's how things kind of move through the internet. And people are very upset about these quilt coats, and this person made a very beautiful story, talked about this quilt that they had. They raised babies on this quilt, this whole thing. And they turned it into a coat, because the quilt became so tattered that it couldn't be used anymore, to the point where they didn't even have that many sections of it to even put into the coat. Most of the coat was other materials, with just the quilt finishings. And they were like, you're just repurposing something. But, after they told that story of their own quilt, and their own quilt coat, they literally said, I do not understand why people are asking me to comment on this. So many things are going on in the world, and people want me to talk about quilt coats. Are you serious? Are you serious? And that was my first thought, 'cause I'm not in this drama. Like, it's not high stakes for me at all. So I was like, oh my gosh, we're really having this conversation right now. And that's what she ended on. And I think it was such a palpable example of moralising things that don't need to be moralised. I know back to sewing, creating community, there's this drama on TikTok in the, I think knitting, like yarn community, 'cause someone was saying that acrylic yarn doesn't melt even though acrylic yarn is plastic. (laughs) So it's not a natural fibre. And the quilt coat thing is, there's no right or wrong. It's just, what are you gonna do with your coat? Your quilt? This has a right or wrong, right? Like acrylic is plastic, it will melt. However, we don't need to moralise things that don't have a right or wrong, it just is. And we also don't need to take something that maybe does have an objective wrong, and blow it out of proportion for like, what's going on? You know what I mean? And I think it's very interesting, because people talk about responsibility, and responsibility to your audience, and yes, in a perfect world, people would not spread misinformation. People would spend a lot of time researching before they say things. They wouldn't just post to post. They wouldn't just post to get reactions. But we also live in a world where you need to have discernment. Right? I think it's interesting, 'cause I think sometimes people see information that's wrong, and they take on the plight of any person who might ever see this post, and be led astray. And that's a fine line too, right? It's a fine line, 'cause there are things, I mean the state of the world right now, right? There are things that people are posting that are very much misinformation, and that can have material harms. But then also the people reading that information need to be able to suss that out. I, if someone's telling you that acrylic yarn doesn't melt, maybe Google it, before you go and take all your acrylic yarn and put it on the stove. You know what I mean? Like, this is not something that's misinformation that is so important that we're treating it as though it's misinformation that's gonna get someone irreparably harmed. You know what I mean? It's not a big end to that I think it's just this example of moralization, really, that that is the conclusion, I think is, what can we do? We can step two, I guess, is think to yourself, am I upset about this post? Why am I upset about this post? Is it objectively wrong, or is it just a different opinion, and it's something that I wouldn't do? Maybe leave it alone. Is it objectively wrong? Okay. Is it something that I don't know, someone told you that a twig on the ground isn't flammable, or the sky isn't blue. Is this something that we need to address? Is this something that we need to then screenshot their post, and put it on our story, and @ them, and block them, and tell all our followers to unfollow this person, because they're spreading misinformation, because twigs are obviously flammable? No, right? And then even when it comes to that big stuff where we're like, oh my gosh, this is gonna get someone hurt. Right? This is gonna get someone, someone's gonna be unwell, right, listening to this. I think there's some questions we can ask ourselves, right? Who is their target audience? 'Cause if their target audience is grown adults, like honestly, it's a give and take. There's discernment here, right? If their target audience are teens and young people, I think there's a bigger question here about, okay, well we need to protect teens and young people who maybe don't have the capacities to protect themselves, but would your efforts be better served by talking to the teens and young people in your life, and saying, here's how we spot misinformation, instead of yelling. 'Cause people are always gonna be scamming. People are always gonna be grifting. People are always gonna be lying, right. And then also, even if you're like, no, I need to address this. I think the question, and this is what I asked myself in real life too, and this is why I'm like disenchanted with this idea of, we're just gonna move to the real world, and everything's gonna be fine, 'cause there's conflict in the real world too, right? I always ask myself, if I know I might enter into a conversation with someone who is very opposed to me, on something that is actually important, I think to myself, what would be my ideal outcome from this conversation, and what is my most likely reaction to talking to this person about this thing? And will my most likely reaction be conducive to my preferred outcome? Because if their opinion is so inflammatory, or even if it's not like a big moral issue, it just really annoys me personally, 'cause we all have those things that just like, quilt coats, it really gets to us. And I know that the way I'm gonna react and respond to this conversation, isn't going to help us see a middle ground, or help me to bring this person to a space that I think is more reasonable, or what have you. Then I think the question is, is it in my best interest to have this conversation with this person now? is it in my best interest to have this conversation with this person ever? And I think that also goes into discernment. Not just discerning, is this misinformation? Is this scamming? Is this whatever? But personally being able to discern like, is this the best use of my time? Truly? Can this be wrong, and I not take this on? - Yeah, yeah. I also wonder like how much of that moralising of things that don't need to be moralised comes from like fear, and helplessness. That, like you say, we are, especially on social media, we are taking on all of the injustice that is happening. We are seeing more clearly than ever, all of the things that need to change, all of the awful things that are happening in, and not just in our own countries, but in everywhere across the entire world, and that's, it's a lot. Like, it's a lot to hold, and to be conscious of all of the time. And I do wonder how much of that, that sort of need to correct, the correct, (laughs) these minor things, these things that really don't matter comes from, I need to do something, and I don't know what to do because there is, it's just overwhelm. There's just, there are all of these things in the world, where do I start? What do I do? I can't change anything. I'm gonna yell at this person on the internet, 'cause then, I get a bit of a boost from those, you know, hormones running through my system. I feel like I've done something. Well, like you haven't. Like, I don't wanna be that person, but you haven't actually done anything. And I mean, for me, I am 100%. I am not gonna say that I am perfect, here. I am totally the, someone is wrong on the internet meme. Like, that is who I am at my core. I hate it. But I try now to step away and go, okay, where is this coming from? Why do I wanna yell at this person who probably either doesn't know any better, or this is just not an important thing. What can I do that is a tangible action, that is gonna make a difference? Even if that is very, very locally. Even if that is sort of calling the friend who I know is struggling at the moment. Even if that is signing a petition, or maybe it's a bigger step, like organising or attending a protest, or writing or calling your MP or whatever it is, it's trying to shift into, why do I wanna take this action? Why do I wanna yell at this person? What do I actually want to achieve? Where is it coming from? And if it is coming from a place of, I want to make a difference, and I feel like the world is on fire and I can't do anything, find something you can do. - Yeah. And your or is, maybe it's not that important to them, or they don't know any better, or, they are trying to elicit the reaction. And that's not to say that you can't feel what you feel. There can be things that are annoying, and enraging, and upsetting, but also remembering that not everyone truly believes in what it is that they're saying. Not everyone is a grifter that, if you can just help them see the light, or if you just convince enough people, they're gonna move away. Some of these people are posting because they just wanna see people angry. There's people who just wanna watch the world burn, and it's easy to do online. Right? That's one of those things that social media, in particular, like a problem, specifically, social media. I think it's harder to do in person because it's harder to spoof your identity in person, right? It's harder to go to school, and stand in class, and just say random things for the sake of saying random things. And yet, there's always still at least one person in every grade who is that person, right? Who will stand up and annoy the teacher, and annoy everyone. So even if in person it's harder to do that stuff, 'cause you get in trouble and people learn that you're that kind of person, and you can't just walk in with a wig and glasses on one day, and everyone's like, oh, who's this new, you know what I mean? There are still people who do that. So imagine on the internet now, where someone can make a million different accounts, and there's websites that are thisisn', so they can just get fake faces, whatever, real faces, whatever. And they're just posting whatever. And then if they get reported, and blocked, and shut down, they make a new public account, and they just post whatever. And they're just, they're just here for the lols. They're just here for the giggles. You know what I mean? And it's tough, right? Because there's, there's a line, right? This certain podcast personality out there that people are very angry at. I personally, I don't know. I don't really know if he fully believes in everything that he says that is inflammatory, but it makes him money and it gets him clicks. Right? I think that's the biggest grift, in the way, you know, secure the bag. Right? So that's the type of thing too, where it's like, well where's the line? 'Cause this is now someone with a lot of power, a lot of influence, saying a lot of things that he may or may not believe just because it makes him money and it gets him followers, right? It's a different conversation to be had. This is an account 500 followers, 1,000 followers, 30,000, 30K, you know even 100K, like, if you asked your mom, do you know @motorcyclesandracecars352, right? And she's like, why are you talking, what language are you speaking? Is this really a person that you need to unseat, and expose, and argue with? I don't know. I don't know. Personally, me? I would rather take a nap, personally. Something I did wanna talk about, 'cause I think, and this is something I forgot to mention when we were recording, but I think it's palpable too, 'cause, social media for humans, But you also do social media for business, is, the tension of the social media exodus, but then also needing social media for work. But specifically, the advice to bypass the social aspect of social media, and to just post and then move on, and that is just because, we're talking about pet peeves, things that enrage us, even if they don't really matter, for me, the logic, it doesn't follow. It doesn't make any sense. (laughs) And that's just something that I wanted to touch on because I feel like a good portion of your listeners are are business people. So it's I just wanted to, let's walk through this for a minute, let's go on a little adventure, right. So. I don't like Instagram. An idea of me, I don't like Instagram. I don't wanna be on Instagram. Makes me feel upset, makes me feel bad. I run a small business. Instagram is where I get my customers. I want people to buy my things, but I don't want to open the app, and see what other people are posting. So I go on Facebook Creator Studio. I go on PLANOLY, I go on Later, I go on Tail. I go on whatever. And just, beep, boop, beep type things in, and I schedule my posts. And then, and social media is my only avenue. Instagram's my only avenue, I'm not on radio stations, I don't do newspapers, I don't do billboards on the side of buildings, or on the side of buses. I'm just on Instagram. And I mostly follow other businesses too, right? And it's just other people who do business in different areas, and I hope that like, maybe one day I do their Reiki session, and they buy my crystals, and it's all great. And I'm not getting any sales. And then I open my little business group community, and everyone else is talking about how they hate Instagram. So they're automating all of their posts, and they avoid their feeds, and they're not getting any sales. And it's because we are creating really pretty storefronts, but no one on our community wants to walk down the street and be advertised to, right? We're like, I'm putting so much effort into my storefront. Okay, have you seen anyone else's storefront? Oh no, I avoid the street. I come into my shop from the back door, and I leave from the alley, and I never go to the front, and I never. That to me, I don't know. Come into my DMs about that. I keep saying don't come into my DMs, come into my DMs about that. See if I'm missing something here. Because, as someone who does small business, as someone who, I don't mind social media, I see social media as a tool. I see it like a hammer. You can beat someone over the head with it. You can build a house with it, right. You have some great posts, and some great tips about creating like a more positive social media space. So it just, to me, it's kind of like this other example, like when people wanna move to a big city, and they don't like how high the rent prices are. But then when they come to visit the city, they rent an Airbnb, instead of going to a hotel. And I'm like, and it's, we have conversations about agency. We have conversations about capacity. Maybe the Airbnb's cheaper than a hotel. Like, what have you but like, if you have the means and you have the choices, and you just choose Airbnb over a hotel, Airbnb is directly connected to the lack of housing supply in major metropolitan cities. Right? So to me, it's just always like, I don't know, get a hotel, you know what I mean? So it's this thing where it's like, people are like, I'm getting no sales, I'm getting no engagement on Instagram. But also, I myself do not engage with anyone else's post on Instagram. What are we doing here? What are we doing here? I don't know. (laughs) - This is something that has, it has been, it has been rubbing me the wrong way for a little while, because yeah, no, I do feel the same very much. And, and I think it's different, if you are like selling directly to customers, it's slightly different, because, you are engaging with people who are not using it for business, and people using social media for business, if they're using it effectively for business, if they have a vague idea what they're doing, or generally using it quite differently to how people who are not using it for business are using it. But yeah, it really frustrates me when I see like B2B business owners who are like, I'm gonna keep posting on social media, but I am not gonna engage. And partly it frustrates me because, I feel like all I talk about is how engagement is more important than posting. So just like, why will nobody listen? But also, like you say, it is, especially when it is from business owners who champion small business, and who champion shouting out your community, and supporting your community, and communities pulling together, and on social media, that looks like being active on social media. That looks like commenting on other people's posts. That looks like sharing other people's posts. That looks like tagging people in things that you think are useful to them. You know, that's what that means on social media. It is about that engagement. It is about walking down the street, checking out their storefront, you know, phoning your friend and saying, hey, they've got this great thing in, you'll love it. That is what it looks like. And as much as I understand that a lot of people really hate social media, and it can be a really awful place, my first instinct, when people say that is, will unfollow some people, you know? Because as, yeah, there's a lot of things you don't have control over, but there are a lot of things you do have control over on your social media. And who you follow is one of them. And who you follow and who you engage with informs who, like, what other posts you are shown by the algorithm. And if you find that you are engaging a lot on posts that are inflammatory, for example, and that you are, that's the stuff you're following and engaging with, even if it's sort of news, and important information kind of posts, that you find that that experience makes you feel, I hate this platform, I hate social media, then you are not gonna effectively use that platform. You know, it's okay. And this comes back to as well, like, it's okay to curate your own social feed. You know, you don't have to be following this news place, and this activist, and these people, because like they share important information. They do, sure. But you can just like go to their feed directly and check them out. If, you know, if you can check a post out that somebody sent to you, you can hop to the rest of the interwebs, and find the news and information there. You know, you can choose where you take in what information. And I do think, as a business owner, it is so, so important to have your feeds curated in a way that you don't hate being on that platform because being active in your community is so important. And so, the first place I start with people when they are like, I really hate this platform, well, mostly I start with why do you hate it? And if it's, I hate the format, like, if it's, I hate, like photos, well, then don't be on Instagram. Instagram is not where you wanna be, you know? if you hate creating short form videos, maybe don't get on TikTok. But if it's, well, I just see all these miserable posts, all these posts that make me feel rubbish about myself, that bring up comparison that, whatever it is, unfollow those people, you know? Unfollow them. It's okay. And something else I see a lot, which is also frustrating me (laughs) at the moment, is, this idea of like, I follow somebody because I want to support their business, but I've muted them because I don't care about the stuff they post. I do understand that this is with the best intentions. That is the worst thing you can do. (laughs) Because what you are saying is, to the algorithm, is just I'm following this person, and I don't enjoy their posts. Ergo, that content is trash. Don't show it to anybody. If you wanna support someone's content, like it, comment on it, share it. Just following people is, that's not it. That is not the way forward. Please? If you are not actually gonna actively engage on that person's posts, don't follow them. You are doing more damage to their social media than you, like, it's not good, don't do it please. Please, I beg of you. So yeah, it does frustrate me that people make and I can understand people want to protect themselves. But I do think you have to start with, who are you following? What are you doing on that platform? Because it doesn't take all that long to shift what you are seeing. Once you unfollow those accounts, once you start seeking out the businesses, and the accounts, and the people who you enjoy their content, and commenting on those, and actually being active like that, it doesn't take that long for your whole feed to shift, and come around to that content. And I notice this, especially like, when I compare like my own Instagram feed, or my own Facebook feed to other people's, and I'm like, wow, you are just in a different world. You might as well be on a different platform. Like, we are not looking at the same content at all. And so, it's like you really can control that stuff. And so if you hate the platform, go on a mass unfollowing spree, if that helps. Get rid of everybody and start again. But you do need to be actively engaging, because that is part of it. That is how you build communities. That is how you make those connections. And that is what social media is about, you know. It's not a billboard, it's not a TV ad. It is a connection. It is a way to actually engage with your people, and grow those relationships. And that is what makes it powerful. - Yeah, and I mean, so many thoughts. I think even when you're talking about in the beginning, like B2B businesses, as opposed to like, finding a client base that isn't business owners, I still think too, like, for example, on Twitter, it goes, everyone goes wild when like Arby's and Wendy's are fighting each other, or like when McDonald's says something, and then Burger King claps back, right? And it's, first of all, these businesses, aren't people, legally, they might be. But physically, Arby's is not gonna walk into Harvey's restaurant Arby's is not trying to get the CEO of Harvey's to eat at the restaurant. All of these CEOs, probably just, I don't know, their chefs make them whatever, you know? They're marketing to clients. They're not marketing to the other businesses. That's not the model, but people love it. People are like, oh my God, Wendy's won this, right? McDonald's is coming back. Remember that one time. So, there's still even benefits to interacting, even if your platform is client-focused. But I was also gonna say, you know, even the idea of curating your feed. I love Facebook. I also enjoy LinkedIn, 'cause LinkedIn is a wild place. I don't know what I'm gonna see on LinkedIn. It's a wild place, I like LinkedIn for different reasons, but Facebook's like one of my favourite platforms. And that is partially because I don't follow, I don't use it for family. I don't have a lot of family on there. I do have a lot of Facebook friends, but I think because of the way that, just, my age group is, like Instagram for a while was a mess for me, my personal Instagram. I hated it. I think that's what like the Facebook effect was. 'Cause all my friends were on Instagram. Now I've just curated Facebook as a place. I hoard Facebook groups. I'm in a million Facebook groups, and it's amazing. If I don't like a group, I leave it. And then I'm just seeing people post funny content, and interesting content, and interesting things. I love Facebook so much. I'm curated Chef's Kiss. My Instagram, like I said, my personal Instagram, for a while, I did not go on it. And then it was stay at home times. So I wasn't seeing anyone in person. I had just graduated college. A lot of my Instagram followers were people I followed, were people from elementary school, high school, and university. So I was in a good place for this. Right? And I unfollowed everyone, like you said, I unfollowed absolutely everyone. And the rule that I made for myself, because we were kind of coming out of panini times, and going back in panini times was, I'm only gonna refollow people that I have seen in person. My best friend from like the fourth grade, who I still text and we call, I have still not refollowed them on my personal Instagram because I have not seen them in person. And I know I'm gonna stay their friend. And I know I would love to see their posts, but that's just like my own personal thing, because I want to get out of this habit of just like, I meet someone once at this obscure event, and now I have to follow them, 'cause of social convention. I didn't even really know this person. Now they post random things. I don't really wanna see this. I'm following to a thousand people. I can't keep up with my feed. Then I have this one friend who's like, I asked them about their day, and they're like, how did they, I not know that they had a birthday party, and they're pregnant, and they're getting married. It's a whole thing. And this goes back to the very beginning. Me talking about this nostalgia, possibly false, for the real world. Part of the reason why it took me so long to do that unfollow exodus on my Instagram was because in high school, I unfollowed someone because of, I didn't wanna see their posts. They were making me sad 'cause there was other things going on. And I go to school. I don't even think I went to school. I think I got a text from someone, and they were like, so-and-so said you unfollowed them on Instagram. Are you mad at them? I can't, I can't. And you know, that was the thing in high school. And I know people to this day, 'cause I graduated university, and people from my university, I don't like so-and-so's posts, but if I unfollow them, they're gonna think that I have a problem with them. Even though I don't really like the stuff that they're posting specifically, it bothers me. It makes me upset. I don't wanna see it. And it's like, we're not even in a context where we're seeing these people every day. We done graduated. You don't need to speak to this person ever again. And they're still like, but I'm connected to this person, this person, who's gonna think that I don't like, you know what I mean? And this goes back to this idea too, where, at the end of the day, the algos can highlight things that make us upset. And there are, like you said, if you don't like a picture-based platform, don't be on Instagram. If you don't wanna watch videos, don't be on YouTube. If you don't wanna read, if you don't wanna read, don't be on Twitter. Right? But a lot of the things, that if people, a lot of the reasons and the aspects of social media that people are like, I hate this, gonna deactivate, gonna go run away and live in the woods, which is like, that must be your only solution then, like, literally go run away and live in the woods, because it has to do with human beings. At the end of the day, it has to do with human beings. And if you live anywhere in community, whether it's rural, and your neighbours miles and miles away, or you're in a metropolitan city, and I have six neighbours around me in a box, you're going to have to deal with people. And then it goes back to that boundaries thing. Right? Because if you can't unfollow someone whose content makes you upset because you're afraid, Susie's gonna tell Sally, who's gonna tell Lauren, who's gonna text you. That is gonna spill out to your, into your relationships in real life. So what are we doing here? Right? I think that's the big question. What are we doing here? - Yeah. And I think that actually makes a great point about how, it kind of annoys me that we talk about like, in real life versus social media, as if they are entirely disconnected things. And they're really not. Like they are, they are real people. Like they are real human beings on the internet. And some of those people, you know, quote, in real life. And also the experience you have on social media impacts your physical existence, and how you interact with people physically around you. Like, if you're going on social media, and you are following a load of people because you feel you have to, due to social convention, even though everything that they post you're like, oh, I hate this for whatever reason. When you come off social media and go to engage in the, quote, real world with the people who are physically there with you, your mood is different. You are less able to deal with misunderstandings, or anything like that that comes up. You are not in a place to be able to deal with that in a mature way, where you can say, hey, okay, I actually disagree with you on this. Or, can we have a discussion about that? Or, can you not just come and knock on my door and invite yourself in for tea without texting me first, or whatever it is. You know? You can't be in a place to have those conversations, if, on social media, you are not upholding those boundaries and you are inundating or allowing yourself to be inundated with all of this information and posts that make you feel rubbish. And so they are really interlinked in that, how you, what you allow on social media, you kind of are allowing in real life. But also, you have to protect yourself in both spaces. Because again, this comes back to like, I used to, I used to be in, sort of a, a situation where a lot of the people who I saw in person were pretty queer phobic. And so I curated my online experience to be like zero tolerance, because I couldn't get away from those people in my, in-person interactions. They were in my life, and I wasn't in a place where I could just leave that situation. And so I created, essentially, an echo chamber of people who were supportive of queer people, so that when I went into that space, and was around those people, I felt supported. And I was in a place where I could walk away enough to sort of, if stuff came up, I could just get up and go to the toilet, or I could avoid getting into discussions, and feeling quite so upset by it, and angered by it, because my online experience was supportive. And I knew that essentially balanced out, for want of a better expression, that online, I knew that there are people who are supportive of this. There are a lot of people, like basically, the people I'm around now are the minority. They are not everybody. They do not represent the entire world. And there is a different reality out there. And I think it is important to realise how our online and offline experiences work together. And so if you are in a situation where say, you are around people in person who are very similar to you, it is powerful to allow your online space to invite in different opinions, because you have that solid grounding and that solid, safe space, if you will, of the people who are physically around you, where you can go and feel supported, and feel like, yeah, okay, you get me. But you are also exposed to those other opinions. And the reverse is also true. - Yeah. I love a good echo chamber. And obviously there's nuance there, and I love the way that you put it. It's like people, if you're missing something, or you have something, you might wanna do the opposite. Right? I think the problem with social media is that idea of the assumption, right? I personally am not in the business of creating a context, or an environment for myself that upsets me. That makes me angry all the time. So if I am forced to have, in person, in a real life, in person interactions, that upset me, yeah, I'm gonna make a social media profile that, anytime I disagree with something, I'm just gonna unfollow them. Oh, you're not inviting conversation. Oh, you're muting, blah, blah, blah. No. It's like, you don't know the life that I'm living. Right. You know, it's a privilege to be able to tune out of blah, blah, blah. I guess it is, I guess it is. 'Cause I have agency on social media. It is a privilege to have agency. It is a privilege to have agency. And some people have agency in their lives, and on social media, and they still choose to use that agency to curate a space that doesn't disrupt their nervous system. Some people don't have agency in their lives, but because they have agency on social media, we assume that they're avoiding hard conversations. Right? And I think it also goes back to this idea of like, focus on yourself, like focus on yourself. And this is something that we don't have time to get into, but this idea of the wanting to know everything about someone in 240 characters, a dissertation, a life's work worth of information, and three identities. And I'm always like, if you don't know me well enough that we've like gotten a couple of coffees, and we sit down, and we've had phone conversations, and when you say, neurodivergent, or non-monogamous, or bisexual, or pansexual, or lesbian, or mixed race, or whatever, I have a very good idea of what that means for you and to you. Why am I in your business? Right? Like why am I in your business? And the same kind of thing, if I say something, or an identity or something, and then I do something that to you, you're like, wait, this doesn't make sense with this identity, and again, right, like we're not just picking identities for shits and giggles, 'cause it's fun and it's trendy, and there's a line there. There's a line with everything, both/and. But generally, right. And again, I think it goes with micro celebrity, parasocial relationship, influencer culture. But, if someone's not trying to sell you something based on something that like truly seems fraudulent, and then again, discernment, just don't buy the thing. Right? But someone's just like living their life. And you're like, I don't understand this. I don't know, maybe send them a respectful DM, and have a conversation, and build that relationship. But if you don't have the time for that and the capacity for that, why is this person's business so important to you? You know, I don't know. And it can sound like very reductionist, and it can sound very dismissive, but it's just, I guess that's 'cause it is. I guess that's 'cause it is. I don't know, we don't, I don't know. I don't know. It really is just kind of one of these things where it's just like, I feel very strongly about not feeling very strongly about it, you know? - So if people wanna find you across the interwebs, where can they do that? - Of course. So the best place to find me is my website,, which I'm sure will be linked somewhere because it's kind of a mouthful. I am a bad internet person, in that, my brand isn't consistent across all of the realms, Instagram, Twitter, what have you. Like, my handle isn't consistent. And I can never remember them half the time. So truly, really, head to my website, and then you'll find all of the thingies. And then also, like my newsletters, the best place to get in contact with me. We, being myself and Alexis, have a episode together over on my podcast, the Living In Cycles podcast. So head over there, once it's out, it'll be linked, and listen to that, yeah. I have a group community, and we discuss cycles, and move through personal cycles, seasonal cycles, connecting, and becoming aware of cycles. So if that's something that you're interested in, and it also touches on social media, and awareness of how we feel about social media, I would love to see you there. And I also have a video on my YouTube channel about treating social media as a tool. And everyone talks about gaming the algorithm. It's not about gaming the algorithm. It's literally just about training the algorithm to show you what you wanna see, and creating a more holistic, pleasurable space for you on social media. So if this conversation's kind of changed your mind, you wanna work with Alexis, maybe you wanna come see this video and look into, okay, maybe I'll give it another shot, right? Like how do I create a holistic space? Again, Facebook's my favourite social media, and a lot of people hate Facebook. Like, if I can do it, you can do it too. Check out the video. - Absolutely brilliant, yeah. I will put all the links in the show notes. People can find you super easily. Thank you very much again for being here. It is always fabulous to talk to you. - Thank you so much for having me. - [Hawke] If you want more regular reminders to find your own way to use social media, follow Alexis on your social platform of choice. All the links will be in the show notes. Until next time, be a human.