There’s a great line in the Emma Stone film “Easy A.” A high school teacher, portrayed by Thomas Haden Church, makes fun of how his students use Facebook: “‘Roman is having an OK day and bought a Coke Zero at the gas station. Raise the roof.’ Who gives a rat’s ass?”
That quip sums up society’s attitude toward social media. It is rapidly becoming an integral part of our lives, even as people remain dismissive of it.
We use social networks to organize events, share our thoughts and keep in contact with friends and family. We even use it to network with people in the hopes of finding employment opportunities.
Despite using it on an everyday basis, we sometimes seem to find it worthless. Social media is constantly mocked, whether through films like “Easy A” or even users’ sarcastic posts on the medium itself.
Even I was skeptical of it.
When I was a kid, I promised myself I’d never get a MySpace, because I found it pointless. The only reason I ever found myself creating a Twitter account was to follow celebrities.
I firmly believe that my original reason for being on Twitter is a very good one. It changed how I interact with the media I consume. I can respond to musical artists and even get something in return. I can gain insight into writers’ mental conditions and thought processes, and I can help to be part of the process of fixing a bug in a video game.
Social media is powerful. Fans can start campaigns to get shows back on the air, and celebrities can make their fans aware of issues they may not have thought anything of before.
More than anything else, I love that blogging platforms allow me to interact with the creators of the media I consume.
Through the microblogging platform Tumblr, I am able to follow the writers of my favorite comic books and come to a better understanding of their intentions. I am able to see behind-the-scenes photos from actors and musicians. Above all, I am able to interact with these people and feel like I am actually a part of their lives, rather than placing them on a celebrity pedestal.
Using social media to interact with the people who make our media can enrich our experience overall.
I can clarify plot points in a video game. I can participate in events going on in a fictional universe. I can attempt to bring my favorite programs back into broadcast. I can socialize with writers and directors and see them as people, rather than as perfection personified.
We should all use social media to do this, even if it’s just to follow an official page and get news about the television we watch.
Thanks to Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr, we’re closer than ever to the creators of our media. Let’s take advantage of that and enrich our own experience.
Reach the columnist at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him at @BrandoBoySP