***Disclaimer While this article doesn't pertain directly to gaming, it is about how all of you gamer's use the web. Read at your own risk!*** I had to take an AFL this week. That stands for Away From Life. Mostly I was taking a break from making desicions, but I was also finding myself completely buried under social networking.
If I am at home on my laptop, I generally have the following things running:
- Trillian which in turn is connected to Windows Messenger, Skype, Aim, gtalk, Yahoo messenger
- Netvibes which I use for all my RSS feed reading
- G+ which streams google+, facebook and twitter
- Xfire which I use to talk to gamer friends
- Steam because I don't have all my gaming friends on Xfire
That's what I have running before I ever actually DO anything on my laptop.
I've been giving some thought to how I use all this connectivity. Do I really need all of it? How are my connections benefiting me? Are they all productive?
I've also been thinking about how I send out information. It's always in flux.
At the moment, I am using G+ to cross post to twitter and facebook. I didn't spare many brain cell's about it until another person I follow started doing the same thing. On a particular spammy day, I noticed I was getting the same information from them 3 times. Considering they posted about 20 times in 24 hours, this led to a heck of a lot of noise in my stream.
How can I use each of the social networks I am connected with to converse with all the people in my life? Generally speaking, I use facebook for family and navy friends, twitter for gaming friends, and I am discovering I use g+ almost like a blog. Can I parcel out the content I am creating to connect better with each audience?
How much time is it going to eat up posting original content to each feed?
Does anyone really care?
I know I care. I have unfollowed some people lately and parred down the cross post mania to one network per person! If you've lost me as a follower or friend lately, it's because I am only listening to you in one place because you aren't being original in 3 or 4 places :)
I wouldn't really have gone this far with over analyzing my social web presence if I hadn't fallen completely in love with G+.
If I receive a friend request on facebook and I accept, I am automatically subscribed to the friend's content. It didn't impact me negatively until I became a cafeworld addict. In order to be my neighbor, you and I needed to be friends. When I added about 25 people from the zynga forums to my cafe, I had people talking about a ton of stuff I really didn't want nor need. I also can't understand all of it because some of my best CW neighbors are over seas and post in their native language.
If you follow me on G+, I don't have to follow you. I have had a few people add me and I wasn't sure who they were. I put them in the "Who the heck are you?" circle and drill down on my G+ stream to see what they chatter about. If I find out they are a gamer friend, I just move them to that circle. G+ makes it so darn easy to control my stream and the type of content I read.
I wanted to highlight a link to the DDO folks the other day. I could have posted it on twitter or on G+. I ended up putting it over on G+ because I could put a full picture, the link and comment without hitting the 140 character ceiling.
I was a little scared last week when G+ added in the games tab. One of the most annoying things about facebook is the games. I am addicted to one, and I say its awful to read all those game notifications on my profile, home page, newsfeed and so forth. I didn't want my G+ trashed by all the game nonsense.
Google listened. G+ game notifications stay on the games tab. They are not in my stream. Ever. I have been playing Zombie Lane over on G+ (which is campy and fun btw), and I have sent gifts, asked for neighbors, published stories about my adventures, and it all stayed on that one tab. It's simply sinful how happy it makes me :)
For now I am going to keep all three networks. They each reach a separate audience and offer unique ways to interact. In the future, I can see myself only using G+. It is simple, clean and functional in ways facebook and twitter can only kick themselves about.
I have added a follow me on G+ button to my homepage. If you haven't gotten an invite to G+ and need one, let me know. It's a beautiful thing, and I am totally enchanted by it's fabulousness.
It's going to take me a little while to par down my cross posting habit. Bear with me while I wean myself off :)
How are you using your social networking? What tips can you give me on how to control the amount of content I put out as well as feed on? I really want to hear what you are doing and how you are managing your networks :)