Let me take you to an imaginary realm; a place where you are attractive, witty, popular, charitable and inspiring. A place where your equally attractive, witty, popular, charitable and inspiring friends are always with you. You can talk with celebrities, politicians and the most interesting of strangers. You need not worry about adversaries as you are able to banish them from your life forever, never having to come into contact with them again. Welcome to Social Media - your blank canvas to paint the most perfect picture of yourself.
Perhaps the most common use of social media becomes apparent to me whilst tirelessly trawling through my, oh so interesting newsfeed. I am astounded by the amount of unofficial comedians that I seem to follow. Regular folk masking themselves as the wittiest and most intelligent of individuals. It’s a wonder that these people aren’t selling out arenas all over the country with their quick one-liners. 142 characters that would surely even raise a smirk on the face of the Morrisseys of this world. Yet, hang on!? How come these Twitter comedians have a personality similar to a dying sloth when we meet in person? Why do they fancy themselves as the next Tommy Cooper online yet in reality they have about as much quick wit as a mother at her son’s funeral? (If you are reading this side-note then I haven’t been able to think of a less callous metaphor and just had to go with it, I’m sorry). Well I shall tell you why these comedians are able to flourish; because social media allows us to portray the personality of who we wish we were.
Aside from the side splitting geniuses that we all become on Twitter, Instagram is another example of personal deceit. The application that brings a whole new meaning to the term ‘mutton dressed as lamb.’ With ‘filters’ we can give ourselves more of a tan, whiten our teeth and hide our spots. We are able to arouse the inner photographer within us like magic. We can make the most mundane images look like modern masterpieces of art. And hey, if you’re naturally gifted enough to create a great image without using a filter, be darn sure to let people know! A simple ‘#NoFilter’ should suffice, you little photographic genius you.
Celebrities (I use the term loosely) are perhaps the masters of social media, the people who make us mere mortals look like amateurs of the social media game. These egocentric masterminds calculating every move they make with their social mediateam behind them bringing them ‘closer’ to their fans. Bollocks. Social Media is just another tool that many of these industries (disguised as humans) use to manipulate their fans. Will you find Mr. X posting pictures of himself snorting cocaine in the gents toilets of Nandos? Probably not. Will he tell you how ‘you should always be yourself’ and express his gratitude towards ‘the greatest fans in the world’? Probably. What a genuinely decent bloke.
Luckily for our self-esteem social media rewards us for our artistry. There are an abundance of ‘approval’ tools that can be used by others to signify an appreciation of the pictures we paint. Like/Share/Re-tweet/Favourite my content and boost my ego won’t you? Please!
Don’t worry I am not exempting myself from this facade. Follow me on Twitter and you will see somebody who thinks they know a lot about football, likes to comment on current affairs and has a keen interest in good music (as well as the compulsory hilarious comment from time to time). Meet me in person, however, and you will discover that I am a big fan of the new Little Mix song, try not to miss an episode of Made in Chelsea and am partial to a spot of baking.
Ok, so upon reading this I’m sure you’ll agree that I’ve painted a rather vulgar picture of myself; coming across as a cynical, pessimistic swine who hates everyone and everything. Well, yeah.
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