“It takes discipline not to let social media steal your time.” – Alexis Ohanian
Social media, even on SL, when you do anything creative or just to keep in touch with friends and share aspects of our SL, is now a big part of it. When I first joined SL there were a few blogs around. People were still using MySpace and not Facebook for the most part. Models on SL used folders with actual textures as their portfolios or created look books that attached to your main screen in world. Flickr? Heard of it, but never used it until I came to SL. I eventually created a facebook account for secondlife which got reported a few times as being fake. I refuse to use my RL name on my facebook. While I don’t care who on SL knows my real name (it’s listed as the secondary name on my SL FB) I don’t necessarily want those in my RL to know about my SL….or more to the point, certain aspects of my SL. Anyhoo…I digress. I created all the “required” sites for my SL blog – flickr, plurk, twitter and what not. Even though Flickr hates me and I’m in a constant battle with yahoo over letting me sign into the site. It’s like Sisyphus, rolling that cursed boulder up the mountain only to have it slide back down.Now, I do not think I am the most wonderful SL photographer. I am slightly more than a pose and click one. I use photoshop to just clean up my images. While this blog isn’t really a full on fashion blog, I do want the clothing I wear to look as true to how it looks on the grid as possible. I clean up those icky lines that appear around avatars noses, and I use a photofilter to add some depth and dimension to my pictures. And then I put my little “Bella 2015” in fancy script in the corner. That’s about it. Then, when I remember, I go and I upload them onto flickr after doing the spamming of the groups in world and on FB. I look through the pictures and I hit like on the ones I actually like. And herein lies my issue….I don’t like a lot of things. As much as I work hard on my photos and my blog, I refuse to become one of those social media people who exchange “a like for a like.” And therein lies the problem of so much crap being tooted as wonderful works of art. I realize what I am saying may come across as highly bitchy and mean, but it’s true. In this world of even losers getting trophies, if you like someone’s photo or post, many people expect a like in return. Not because they truly LIKE the picture or the post, but because it is now what society dictates is “polite”.
Now I am the first person to admit that art is subjective. What we find appealing is based on our own experience and who are we to judge what someone else considers art? This is not talking about public funds being used for art that some may find objectionable. This is just a very base, blanket statement about what appeals to us as people artistically and creatively. Coming from a RL background in the arts, the first rule of thumb was “have a thick skin.” Be proud of what you have created so that the opinions of others don’t kill you as much. I know I have had performances where I was told I did amazing, but I knew I could have done better. So for me, a like for a like means nothing. I want people to like my work because they actually LIKE it. Not because it’s what the social media society norms dictate. And that is why I will never have 100 likes on a photo of mine. I am not saying that everyone who has an insane number of likes on their work does this. There are A LOT of people out there who deserve it. But let us keep things in perspective. Most of us are probably not them.
The point of my little verbal tirade here is that we put so much stock into how many likes something gets. Yes of course when we create a blog post, or a picture or a work of art, we want others to enjoy it. But is that the only reason some people do this? To validate themselves because someone else decided to click the little star at the bottom of our picture. Is the creative process just about that? Does what we create meany any less if 0 people favorited it as opposed to 1,000? Should we spend less time on our creations and more time liking the creations of others so in turn, they will like ours?
Hat – Laima Mesh Hat with Veil – Black Arts
Hair – Clarissa (Dark Grey Pack) – EnVogue
Lipstick – Dee – MUA @ The Couturier’s Dock’s (only 20 remaining at time of publishing)
Necklace & Earrings – Pearl Rain Season 3 Choker Set in Pink – Mandala @ Shiny Shabby
Dress – Sparkle in the Night – Nya’s Shop **NEW RELEASE**
Shoes – Dolores for SLink High Feet – Venus Shoes (Special MP Promo)
Cigarette Holder – Madame Couture Hyper Gems – JCNY
Poses – from Feminine Lines Series – Di’s Opera
Items from Nya’s Shop are Review Copies
I actually like to “like” the works of others, not necessarily because they are amazing works of art or because I want return attention, but sometimes because I want to be able to see the outfit later when I am catfishing for something to blog, sometimes because I think they really R-E-A-L-L-Y! tried hard and we all have to start somewhere though too. I understand and agree with your thoughts about the number of stars and as a blog manager, I put very little faith in the number of stars a blogger has on their flickr and every chance I get I try to educate designers (that I work with) that this probably isn’t a good indication the person is a worthy blogger. I seldom get much attention on flickr drawing my biggest numbers on my blog itself and my Facebook a distant second. If a designer ever wants to see my “daily views” on my blog, I’d gladly share them, but other wise I think number of followers or even how well the designer likes the bloggers work IN THEIR OUTFITS should be sufficient. Because I will be the first to admit, there are some clothes out there that will never look right on me no matter how hard I style it, it just doesn’t “fit” the persona that is Cao. Thanks Bella Boo! Another insightful post. ❤ you!
❤ you too Cao. and I agree with everything you said!!!
I generally ‘like’ something if it made me pause – made me think, made feel some emotion, or sometimes just for the sheer awe it inspired. I blog and take pictures, but ‘likes’ are not the driving factor. Am I learning, am I growing, am I getting better? That’s my goal. Of course, it would be nice if the number of ‘likes’ and ‘followers’ reflected that growth, but I will keep on keepin’ on regardless. 🙂 Reciprocal likes, while nice, are certainly not a necessity – I would much rather get a few ‘true’ likes than a ton of like-happy clicks. 😉
Very spot on, I mean comments, likes and follows are always appreciatted but much like you said, I prefer those which are “real” meaning I managed to touch someone on a personal level with my words and pictures and that holds more importance than 100 exchanged likes