Social Media Day – June 30th.

As a person born in the limbo-land between Gen X and Gen Y, it’s hard for me to conceive a time before Facebook. I’ll be honest – it’s harder still for me to envisage a time before mobile phones. I can recall being overseas and receiving an email from my younger sister inviting me to join something called Facebook. I initially scowled at the thought of having so much personal information available to anyone who cared enough to look for it online. I shunned the MySpace revolution. It seemed stupid and unnecessary to try and gain ‘friends’ I’d never met before when I had all the real life friends I could ever wish for. But eventually, and thanks to the need to feel connected to my far-away sister in Melbourne from my van in Europe, I conceded and joined the Facebook party. This was 5 years ago…

Today, it’s hard for me to imagine life without it. Today my job basically revolves around Facebook and Twitter and contributing to the online conversation about “whatever”. And today is June 30th – Social Media Day.

It’s the second annual Social Media Day in the history of the world. The day was initially organised by Mashable. For those who don’t know, “Mashable is an American news website and Internet news blog founded by Pete Cashmore. The website’s primary focus is social media news, but also covers news and developments in mobile, entertainment, online video, business, web development, technology, memes and gadgets.[1]

Social Media Day is a day of recognition, celebrating the technological innovations that enable us to communicate and connect with each other, wherever we may be in the big wide world (provided there’s an internet connection.. but they’re working on that). It’s a day where people who are part of the online community, either in a professional or personal capacity, can get together offline and have a drink and a chat about how social media has made the world a more connected place.

Personally, I use Facebook and Twitter every single day. Aside from the Ellis Jones gig, I play bass in a rock band and these social mediums are a way to promote and share not just upcoming events and gigs, but music, photos and other band-y tidbits. Our band would be virtually unknown if it weren’t for these platforms. It’s about having information right at your very fingertips and discovering what excites other people; be it music, photography, making clothes or whatever projects. The exchanging of ideas and advice within my online community certainly has boosted my knowledge of the music business as there are countless unofficial experts out there simply bursting with information who are willing to share what they know.

When the Prime Minister of Egypt resigned after succumbing to the pressures of protesters, he did so on Facebook. The Pope tweeted from an iPad the other day. So, let’s observe our online communities on this Social Media Day and make a toast to connectedness and the ensuing freedom that stems from sharing information and ideas.

[1] Mashable Definition on Wikipedia


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image credit : Pete Cashmore