Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Facebook & Twitter - Why We Don't 'Like'

A few people have asked us why we don't have facebook/twitter integration on our sites, blogs, and networks so I wanted to explain so that there is no further assumptions that we simply lack the ability to do such simple add-ons across our matrix.  

The reason is so simple yet a bit ahead of its time - it is about 'Quality over Quantity' folks...

We did not build our online matrix to attract the attention of mass quantities of people - we have always felt having great numbers of people either visiting our sites or joining them was not going to automatically increase our effectiveness or impact...from experience we know it can be just the opposite.  

We actually launched the Interdependent Project with some built in 'turn-off's' that we knew would turn away some very specific mindsets that we did not want to be burdened with.  It worked and we also intentionally practice other web strategies to deflect other unwelcome energies that seem to do nothing but create vacuums wherever they are allowed access.  

Before we even embarked upon this matrix weaving journey we saw that by 2020 the internet would have worked through a great deal of its initial development tasks and that the 'mass' and 'hype' that were the cornerstone of all media in the age of television will exhausted itself and there will be no audience for it.  How did we see this?  

There is a certain amount of predictability in any given situation and when you study social behavior patterns it does not take a genius to discern probable directions that the river is bound to take in its journey down the mountain.  

Community stops being a community when people no longer know each other or have any real way to develop authentic relations that can be relied upon.  Human beings have been so isolated for nearly a century that it is no surprise that during these early decades of the internet's development people would flock to MySpace first (something they were used to getting) and then Facebook (a place where they could put on their social face).  And then Twitter was born out of the simple fact that technology suddenly sucked more time in the already existing 'not enough time in the day' 20th century man's paradigm that he/she could only tweet out 140 word expressions that eventually melted into the url link pot that Twitter has become.  

I don't care if anyone 'Likes Me' on Facebook - our work advocating and promoting sustainable solutions is not a popularity contest and it makes me sick to see all the organizations and businesses that at one time I had respect for going down that road.  And the tragedy for me is the knowledge that it was my generation of web designers that sold them down that road with promises of some kind of impact or financial benefit would come.  The truth of the matter is that if you were to take the amount of energy and resources that has been spent trying to be "Liked' (including fees to web developers) a nation of EcoVillages could have been built by now.  

So we intentionally choose to not participate in something that is going to be non-existent or completely corrupted by the government by 2020 anyhow.

We value our time and energy in ways that do not allow superfluous meanderings down popular trends and fads.

We are not blind to the value or role these social network empires have played in the bigger scheme of things, but we also know that taking the time to have Facebook & Twitter integrated across our networks will not yield the quality online communities that we are not only sponsoring, but have worked hard to cultivate real and lasting environments for sustainable communities - both online and on the ground - to evolve.
If someone likes our content and/or networks and wishes to 'share' then they will find a way to do so.  The reason our culture has had so many challenges approaching the whole transition to sustainable systems, models, and structures is because of our built in need for instant gratification, convenience, and disposable everything.   For those who preach how to shift world-views and how to build sustainable communities to cater to the 'quick fix' mindset hardly opens space for even little shifts to occur.  

The audience/members of our content/networks are intelligent minded folks who have expressed appreciation for the absence of all the flash/hype multi-media vices that plague the web.  In the long run 'quality' will always prevail over 'quantity' and one genuine/true friend will impact ones life far more than a thousand 'friends'.

In Sustainable Solidarity