Social Media Hall of Mirrors

Social media is a hall of mirrors. Your every movement, every action, every outburst is echoed and refracted off of hundreds of other movements, actions, and outbursts.

You cannot be an individual online. We move as one, or so it seems. It is a disjointed unison.

If I share someone else’s viewpoint, I am intentionally or unintentionally giving that viewpoint power and substituting my voice for someone else’s. I am, in effect, voting for attention to be placed on the viewpoint I’m sharing in lieu of my own. I am choosing not to develop my own idea of something but rather to vote for something which seems close enough to what I think I might want to have an idea about.

I vote for x. So should you (otherwise why would I be sharing it). That voice, promoted, its potential popularity – a signal boosted – shaped by my endorsement. Reflected across mirrors so that it’s effectively origin-less. Bright ideas like lights bouncing. A light show in a nightclub.

(You cannot be alone on social media. It requires a priori dependence on signal boosting – recognition – through others. A Facebook user with no friends still requires a Facebook account, which implicitly petitions belonging and external connection.)

 

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