Roxanne & Shane, founders & owners of Bare Feet Studios & Beachwalks.tv have been consulting and in the internet industry a lot longer than I have and I was fortunate enough to receive some vital coaching from both of them concerning Time, specifically relating to being a freelancer.
Rox & Shane did their own show, Beachwalks.tv, but what I didn’t know at the time was that they were also very, very, VERY busy with their consulting business where they have 12 years of experience working in internet technology, streaming media, audio & video podcasting, new media creation and consulting, content management systems, event production, and public speaking.
Fast Forward to March 2007, and I accompanied Rox to NYC’s BlogHerBiz ’07 conference. We were filming or attending discussions all day, which probably amounted to 6 or 8 hours, tops, before we shut the productions down and got ready to socialize for the rest of the evening.
Lisa Stone & Marissa Mayer @ BlogHerBiz ’07
When Rox turned her computer on, she said something about having 80 emails since she had last checked this morning. I remember laughing at that, thinking “ha ha, you have all this spam/bacn to get rid of, hahaha” To my shock & horror, I found out she had 80 actual legitimate BUSINESS emails, with more coming in.
At the time, I was probably only getting 30 emails a day… like, meaning in a 24-hour period… and those were mostly garbage. There was something about Rox’s email situation that told me to pay attention, because I was looking at my future. We headed to the socializing events with both of us knowing that by the time she returned from having a good time (and, less importantly, business networking at the same time), even MORE email would be stacking up… Continue reading “Time, Business & Handouts [Time, Part 1]”
Six months ago, back in August, I wrote “Digital Internet Snobbery”, which was basically about how I had begun interacting with more and more people that knew about, understood and utilized Social Media and fewer and fewer people who didn’t.
I actually halted the process of adding more people to my social sites to see if I could do something about that or if I WANTED to do anything about that.
I’m very comfortable and happy with people that know how to use Social Media properly, because it’s an efficient form of communication. The least time is wasted explaining things. I have very few conversations that I didn’t intend to have. Anything I want to tell someone is available by sending them a link through iChat or Skype. I can talk to Rox in Hawaii or Phil in the UK at the press of a button.
At this point, it just about PAINS me to interact with people that aren’t “hip” to Social Media. It’s so limiting. To me, it’s like speaking to people that don’t actually know English, even though they speak it a little. It’s so inefficient. You end up explaining things that you’ve already forgotten the explanations for because they’re so internalized already.
However, those of us that “get it” are in the vast, vast, VAST minority. We’re a subset of people that want to interact with other people inside a subset of people that have internet access inside a subset of people that have computers in the first place. There’s nothing wrong with that, but I’ve had a couple of experiences in the last week that have allowed me insight into what “the masses” think about what it is that I/we do on a daily basis.
At some point this week, reader “David” got upset over a post I wrote. Last night, David suggested that I was linking to articles about real-life cases in order to increase my Google rankings. I’m not going to link to that post or his comment because the response would be the same… “You wrote this post so you could link to your other post and increase your Google rankings AGAIN! 🙁 “. hahahaha But the point is that offhand, I just didn’t have anything to say about that, because linking to references from inside posts is as common to me as saying my name when I introduce myself to people. However… SOME people don’t SAY their names when they’re introduced to people. Some people never introduce themselves at all…..
Now… You see how much BETTER that last part was? You see how IF you were interested in any of the topics I mentioned, you could just click on them and get an extension of my post? Do you understand how much less typing I have to do because I can hyperlink to previously-posted material instead of having to explain the whole thing over and over? 😀
Anyway… So I linked Faya to my posts and her response was “Are you a publicist?” 🙂 I laughed at that, because I was reminded that to people who don’t do what we do as far as Social Media, our form of communication is going to appear strange to them. I certainly didn’t consider her question an actual inquiry as to what I do for work, which, in fact, it was hahaha.
The whole point of linking inside posts is a) avoiding redundancy / reinventing the wheel, and b) allowing the reader to quickly and easily access information which bolsters one’s point… or, in David’s case, refutes one’s point. David didn’t believe that the article I linked to had anything to do with the point I was making in my post, because I didn’t know the person in the article I had linked to. Unfortunately, that’s one of the flaws of the internet. We get information and we can’t possibly get the entire context. It’s just not possible. We have to roll with what we’re told. If they’re having a Presidential debate and there are lines on the bottom of the screen, we’re supposed to believe that those lines represent commoners who have buttons in their hands to click approval or disapproval of what the current speaker’s saying. All we can do is believe that or not believe that. We post what we think based on what we take away from the event.
So if someone posts opinions of the debate based on what they saw the lines do while the candidates were speaking, you can say the exact same thing. “You don’t know the people who had the clickers. You don’t know what their motivations were. You don’t know what was in their minds.” That’s absolutely true…. Unfortunately, what we’re presented is all we have to go on. It’s a flawed system, but it’s what we’ve got.
That’s not to say that I’ve never done things that I think would climb on Google, hahaha of course I have. Google is where you want to be, because it’s the only search engine people actually use. My point in the case that David commented on though, was that I was providing an example, granted, an EXTREME example of the situation I was writing about.
As far as Faya‘s question, I can understand why she asked that. 🙂 Attempting to read my posts as an outsider (read: 99% of the population), they definitely read more like news articles than personal entries on a blog. This is a personal entry right here, and it seems more like a report than anything, to me. This is because I’m not talking to myself…. I’m talking to anyone that happens to read my blog, wherever in the world they happen to be.
That’s what I look at every day. People from several countries reading my blog. I had over 4,000 unique visitors request over 7,000 pages of mine in the last month.
So it wouldn’t make sense for me to figure that people in California know about local NYC news. People in Hawaii? The UK? Germany? If you don’t post links to what you’re talking about, you’re leaving people in the dark that might otherwise learn something new and improve their lives. You’re leaving them to fend for themselves and try to Google the information that you very easily could have linked them to.
This is why it comes off as “being a publicist” to Faya and “increasing Google rankings” to David. When you get involved in Social Media, you learn to speak to the masses instead of to one person. Instead of one-to-one communication, it’s one-to-many. If I Twitter Bre that something’s going on, I’m actually announcing it to my entire roster of 1,200 Followers. That necessitates a different communication than if I had sent a direct message.
Similarly, some people post to the internet as if they’re writing a text diary. A “blog” is short for a “web log”. Some people are happy and content to type about what their dog did today or that happened at their job. I post a lot of pictures, but if I’m going to WRITE something, it’s because I want people to THINK. Think about ME, Think about YOU, Whatever… just THINK!
Even if you don’t like what I’m saying, you’re learning about something else in life that you don’t like and you can avoid in the future. Even if you don’t believe what I’m saying, you achieve a new understanding of the possibilities of what someone might be thinking about you or your relationship or your web series or whatever I happen to post about. So that’s one of the reasons why I post the way I do. Every post is a message in a bottle. I appreciated David’s comment because it’s an indication that he received the message. He didn’t LIKE the message… 🙂 I understand and respect that and I’m willing to debate anything that I post.
As far as Faya’s question… yeah… I guess I *AM* a publicist. 😀 I publicize myself. I could publicize other people if I felt like it. I spent the last 8 months (still there, I just don’t care anymore 🙂 ) on page 1 of Google for just my first name because I RAWK Social Media. Period.
For better or for worse, it’s changed the way I think and the way I communicate, and I appreciate comments and questions from people that don’t do this the way I do it, because I get to test my logic.
For a couple of months, I billed myself as a “Social Media Expert”, which I am. 😀
I removed that title because in the grand scheme of things, it didn’t say anything specific or useful about me. It was mostly “Keeping up with the Joneses”. I would look at people billing themselves as SMEs and go “um… if THAT PERSON’S an expert, I’m FOR DAMNED SURE an expert!” hahahaha 😀
I stopped thinking about it a long time ago, but today, I read an interesting article by Jeremy Pepper, entitled “Taking Stock – Can Social Media Do What It Claims?” that’s briefly rekindled my interest in the topic. Amongst some other interesting things, Jeremy writes:
“JP: … While people are glomming onto social media, there seems to be very little being done in the circular nature of the social media consultants.
You don’t hear/read about campaigns that are helping change the world. You don’t hear/read about campaigns that are being done with the large agencies or consultants that are trying to help make the world a better place.
You read social media people talking about social media … and that seems to be it. It’s the self-fulfilling prophecy of Valleywag’s 250. And, I have written about this before, and nothing much changes.”
Jeremy then goes on to name a few Echo Chamber Bigwigs and he gives some suggestions for useful things they might do with their massive numbers of followers on various social media sites.
As I looked at his list and what he was suggesting that these people do, I was reminded of my post from four months ago, entitled “Content / Production Value / Popularity”. As a content creator, I’ve been very interested in how people acquire followings and what they utilize their fan base for. By March 2008, when I wrote C/Pv/P it was clear to me “what’s going on around here”. 😀
And, yes…. This is getting back to the point of what this has to do with Jeremy’s post. 😀
What’s going on around here is that people are trying to sell stuff. Period. There are two ways to do this, but they end up at the same destination. The first way is to create content that people like and enjoy and pass on to their friends, who then become viewers and hopefully PASSIONATE viewers and carry the flag for you to their towns, cities and countries all over the world. If you look at the videos from when DiggNation came to NYC and there were lines all up, down and around the block of nothing but excited FANS, FANS, and more FANS, that’s a prime example.
The other way to “sell stuff” is to base your show or site around someone that comes with a pre-fab fan base. If you don’t understand this, it’s often confusing when you see people with LESS TALENT brought on board when there are people with obviously WAY MORE TALENT available for the project. For instance, let’s say someone’s a way better musician/producer than I am, but they don’t have any social media props. If you put the two of us up for the same project (read “selling stuff” inside the Echo Chamber), you can either HOPE that people will like his/her music, and it will catch on, OR you can go with what you know, which is that I currently have 993 Twitter followers, 734 Facebook “friends”, 636 Myspace friends, etc, etc, and Google loves to Nom Nom on everything that I do, so you can find me at the top of the search results for Bill (#5 of 388,000,000), NYC dating (#7 of 309,000), video editor resume (#2 of 802,000) and Emmy Award Editor (#1 for my resume and #2 for my Indy Mogul episode, out of 612,000 English pages).
So when you look at it for what it is, what counts inside the Echo Chamber (aka the Fishbowl) is “reach”, or perhaps how much of a built-in marketing machine the person brings to the table and *NOT*…. I repeat… *NOT* their ability to make anything that remotely resembles a professionally produced or edited video. You do NOT have to have ANY talent as an on-air personality… you have to have a fan base. You do NOT have to have a track record of well-done videos… you have to have a fan base. You do NOT have to look good COUGHunlessyou’reafemaleCOUGH… you have to have a fan base.
This is one of the reasons the term “famous for nothing” is tossed around so much. If you ask “do you know XYZ?” or “have you heard of XYZ”, the answer will be “yes”. If you ask what that person does, you’ll see perplexed facial expressions and the scratching of heads. 😀 Basically, these people are popular NOW, and unless you were around back in the day when they initially developed their fan base, you can’t figure out WHY anybody would care what they said about ANYTHING outside of whatever their ultra-narrow niche of expertise is…. whatever that might be. This leads me to my point about Jeremy’s article…
There is a difference between the ability to attract attention and the ability to influence those whose attention you’ve attracted.
Lindsey Chen and I dropped a post two days ago, and two hours after I pressed “publish”, the visitor map for that one article looked like this:
What this means is that we wrote something that people were interested in reading.
What this does NOT mean is that we have any influence over anyone who read it.
Is it POSSIBLE that people might listen to what we have to say on topics other than dating? Yes. However, the fact that we have X amount of “eyeballs” doesn’t necessarily translate to the ability to mobilize ANY of those people in the direction of a cause. This is what makes it seem like social media is full of hot air. 😀
What we’re developing is “cred”. The important question is “what area/field are we developing ‘cred’ IN?” If you’re famous for asking people questions, why should anyone care what YOU have to say? If you’re famous for being attractive… why should anyone care what YOU have to say? If you’re famous because your parents are famous? If you’re famous because you did a cool video one time? If you’re famous because you have a lot of subscribers or video views on YouTube?
That’s what happens when people aren’t following you for YOU, and they’re following you because of what they’re getting out of following you. If you get advance information about gadgets, people are going to follow you… Not because they LIKE you, but because THEY want to find out what YOU found out. If you made a bunch of money and sold a startup, that’s great for you! 😀 and congrats!… but people are going to follow you to see if THEY can learn what YOU learned and do the same thing YOU did. It doesn’t mean they like you or care what you have to say. I’m sure that most people that hit my site for dating advice don’t even read the poster’s name, or if they read it, even remember it. 🙂
Having said that… Along the lines of Jeremy’s question and request: “show that social media can change the world”, I do remember a situation where Chris Brogan rallied people to support Amanda Gravel in an event she put on to support someone. I’ve also seen musicians publicized and supported via social media. Very recently, Whitney Hess wrote a heartfelt post about someone she knew who died. Jay & Ryanne have traveled to REMOTE PARTS OF THE WORLD to teach people who never would have found out about it about blogging, internet connectivity and videoblogging.
So.. I’m not saying it’s impossible. It’s definitely worth a try to utilize social media for something other than publicizing ourselves, 🙂 However, the “cred” necessary for becoming known as an authority that people can look up to to point out worthwhile causes is NOT being built up through demonstrating one’s proficiency at Public Relations. You can talk about business and social media ALL DAY, and if you turn around and don’t pay people WHAT YOU OWE THEM and ON TIME, your “cred” is ZERO. You can get interviews with “important people” ALL DAY, and if the word in the street is that you treat your fans and followers like garbage, your “cred” is ZERO. You can sell as many businesses as you want, and if nothing you have to say RIGHT NOW is original, current and relevant… your “cred” is ZERO.
So, if you’re looking for people to announce when they finally make an iPhone with the camera on the correct side so we can do video iChat with it, you’ve come to the right place. If you’re looking for people that can tell you what tools and sites to use to enhance the productivity of your company… you’ve come to the right place. If you’re looking for what Jeremy calls “a higher value to social media, where we can make people’s lives better and really rally people to help others”, I’m sure there are people that are using social media for exactly that purpose, like maybe Roxanne Darling, but for the most part… “Ain’t that type of party”.
Around February, 2008… approximately five (5) months ago, I decided to ask a member of the video message board, Seesmic if he REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY wanted to represent himself as he did in a video that he made.
What happened? People started crying. BOO HOO HOO! YOU’RE BEING MEAN! YOU’RE TELLING HIM WHAT TO DO! BOO HOO HOO! 😀
Fast forward 5 months to this week’s events… where a *different* person got penalized for video that HE posted to the internet. Did he post it ~ a year ago? Yes. Was he penalized for it this week? Yes.
So now, maybe people can stop CRYING and WAKE UP! 😀 It doesn’t matter if you’re having a so-called private conversation with a so-called friend of yours if it’s AVAILABLE FOR THE PUBLIC TO VIEW. People are going to look at the one video that you did and make their own decisions about your content and about YOU as a person. They’re going to decide whether they want to socialize with “a person like this”. They’re going to decide whether they want to HIRE “a person like this”. They’re going to decide whether they want to SPONSOR “a person like this”.
The point I was trying to get across, almost half a year ago, is that all of your content is standalone. You have to treat every video and every text post and every picture as if people are going to look at that ONE item and form judgements about you. You can’t rely on OTHER posts to pull you back into the frying pan out of the fire. You can’t rely on other people vouching for your character, ESPECIALLY when your video is viewed outside the realm in which your friends have juice. If nobody’s ever heard of your friends or they just don’t care what your friends opinions are, you’re short.
The reason people were CRYING is because they want the internet to be about freedom of speech. Unfortunately for them, they’re missing the other side of the coin…
Freedom of Consequences
Yes, you are free and clear to use whatever low-class terms you like when you make video, audio or text posts to the internet. What happens next is… PEOPLE SEE YOU AS LOW-CLASS. Good for you. You’ve achieved your goal. You expressed yourself, and people have a new image of you that you’ve created. Similarly, if you create a video that people see as offensive… PEOPLE SEE YOU AS AN OFFENSIVE PERSON. That’s the way it works. You express yourself, and then, as Otir pointed out, you have ZERO CONTROL over what other people receive and internalize based on what you posted. This is what’s simultaneously fantastic and unfortunate about communication, especially on the internet.
Does it matter that whatever video you’re getting penalized for is a year old? No. People that saw it for the first time TODAY… feel upset about it TODAY…. NOT last year. Unfortunately, the fact that posts, especially video and audio are STANDALONE items means that whatever the focal point is of people being upset can now be embedded ad infinitum all over the web. Guess what? Your context is GONE! The text you wrote on your original page with the video? GONE! The links you had on that page to supporting material? GONE! Your entire library of work up until and surpassing that time? GONE! Comments from posters and/or supporters? GONE! The only thing that’s left is the content that you uploaded and the thoughts of the person who’s newly embedded your video on their page so they can show THEIR FRIENDS that you’re “a person like this”.
I was having a conversation IRL just last night, in which I thought I was anonymous, and then the chick… um… woman says “I’ve read your blog“, hahaha and it was time to change gears. Not because I was being inauthentic beforehand, but because now, I was aware that I wasn’t working with a clean slate. 😀 We still had a great and interesting convo, but it had already been tinted by her impression of who I am or what I’m about from reading my blog.
That’s the way it works. You express. Other people receive and take away what they want from what you expressed, regardless of your intentions when you posted the text, audio or video. I touched on this in a joking way in “Do NOT Let This Happen To You! :/”. I was saying “some stuff” and then Annie broke out her xacti and it was time for The Kid to say “other stuff”! 😀
Again… Not because I was being inauthentic when the camera was off, but because what I was saying wasn’t for general consumption. It was a conversation I was having with my friends and totally wouldn’t have made sense outside of the context that they all had from being friends of mine and actually knowing me. I mean… It would have made sense, 🙂 but I can’t express to randoms the same thing I can express to people that have background knowledge of who I am, what I do and why I do it with anywhere near the same effect.
Similarly… If you do a video that you put out on public channels that for some odd reason, you consider private… be prepared for people that you didn’t intend to watch that video to view it and make up their minds about “who you are” as a person. If you do a video that you think is funny to your friends and people that know you, and put it on public channels… be prepared for people that you didn’t intend to watch that video to view it and make up their minds about “who you are” as a person. Is there freedom of speech? Of course there is. There’s also OWNERSHIP. OF. CONSEQUENCES.
That was my whole point back on Seesmic.
I couldn’t care ANY LESS how people express themselves on the net.
I wanted people to realize is that they eventually might have to OWN the consequences of their actions/words/videos, and that’s what we all got a front row seat to this very week.
I’ve had some really interesting experiences as of late, which all revolve around the question “Who Are You?”. Not the absolutely unknowing question, as in “Who IS that over there?”, but the arrogant question “Who are YOU?”.
Let’s get it straight off the bat. “Who you are” is relative and completely subjective.
Am I an Emmy Award-Winning video editor? Yes I am. Have I been a National *and* International Emmy Awards Judge for several years? Yes I have. Does that have *ANYTHING* to do with how I interact with people? No, it does not.
This is because what I’ve accomplished is NOT “who I am”. Similarly, what other people have NOT accomplished is NOT “who they are”, either. To take that one level further… Not knowing that someone’s accomplished something does not make them NOBODY or INFERIOR. Learning that someone HAS accomplished something doesn’t automatically make them SOMEBODY or SUPERIOR, either.
I touched on this topic peripherally in “Howâ€™s your logo working for you?” when I mentioned meeting Nathan Freitas. To expand… We had just come from a great frisbee game, and a bunch of us headed out to celebrate and socialize afterwards. I had played against Nate, and I thought he did well, and I hadn’t met him before, so I introduced myself to him. He didn’t recognize my name, and I didn’t recognize his, but he knew of ReelSolid.TV, and he and I had actually had text-based interaction way before meeting IRL because he had commented on a video I did about men’s suits. Interestingly enough, even though I knew NOTHING about Cruxy.com at the time, I knew I had a picture with Mike Hudack while he was wearing a Cruxy shirt. Nate immediately and adamantly informed me that I was mistaken, at which time I turned on my camera and produced said picture:
The point that’s relevant to this particular post is that I didn’t go from “nobody” to “somebody” when Nate figured out “who I was”. I went from “a person” to “a person that Nate had heard of, and whose work he had seen”. Same thing with me. For me, Nate went from “a frisbee opponent” to “someone I’ve met who runs a site where artists can upload their work and get paid for it”.
Most people who meet me have no idea “who I am”, and I like it that way. They have no idea that I’m an MIT graduate. They have no idea that I’m DatingGenius.
I like it that way, because people are REAL when they don’t have a reason to sweat you. I love being “judged” by what people see when they look at me. 😀 I love it when people play themselves, because there’s no returning from that. It’s like “Before you knew who you were talking to, you acted totally differently towards me”.
Anyway… I’ve had several interesting interactions over the last three weeks, revolving around the question “Who are YOU?”
I ended up at this party, and I saw this random chick hanging out with three of my homegirls. Out of the goodness of my heart, I decided to introduce myself to her. What I intended to do was say hello to her and move on to hanging out with my actual friends. So I say “Hi. I’m Bill”, and her response is “You sent me a friends request on Facebook, and I declined it”. HAHAHA So I’m like ?????? because this is a totally new situation for me. Usually, when chicks don’t accept you on Facebook, that’s because they don’t want to talk to you AT ALL, so when they’re around you, they don’t say jack to you. So I’m like “Wait a minute… Let me get this straight. You just informed me that I friended you on Facebook so you could tell me that you didn’t accept it? :D” and she’s like “Yeah… Who the hell are YOU?”
So, this was really funny, considering that I have over 500 Facebook contacts and over 280 Linkedin contacts and over 650 Twitter contacts and over 600 MySpace contacts, not to mention people that know “who I am” all over the planet, from Hawaii to the U.K. to Tokyo to The Netherlands to California to NYC. Meanwhile, I introduced myself to this chick “cold”, not recognizing her face or body from anywhere, and not recognizing her as someone that I sent a Facebook friends invite to. In the future, when I figured out “who she was”, I realized that I had friended her because I saw that we had 17 mutual friends. There was nothing interesting or appealing about her. Similar to what happened IRL, I was extending the hand of friendship to someone who was friends with friends of mine.
So I found the question “Who the hell are YOU?” to be ridiculous, because it was as if she was requesting for me to audition to be her Facebook friend when I didn’t give a damn about her in the first place. It was like *I* had something to gain from it. Meanwhile, I could have ignored her completely and interacted with my actual friends and my day would have been exactly the same, except for a funny story to tell about how people get souped up and think they’re worth knowing for some odd reason. 🙂
Another interesting reaction I got recently was at a party. At some point, I took a picture with some chick that I had met that night. About 22 hours after I posted the picture to my flickr stream, I got an email from her with some sob story about the reason why she was asking me to take it down. I didn’t believe a word she said, but I gladly made it private, because every picture I take and post is with people that want to take pictures with me. Just the fact that she was asking me to remove it was grounds for removal. The question here is… Why the hell are you taking pictures with people and not expecting those pictures to arrive on the net? The only uneducated guess I can come up with is that because she had never seen me before, she didn’t figure that a picture she took with me would end up anywhere of note. According to her sob story, she didn’t want certain people to see her partying. The question becomes a) Why were you partying in the first place, and b) Why were you taking pictures with people if you didn’t want to be spotted partying?
Last week, I approached this chick who’s active in social media and is always asking her ‘fans’ for things. When she sends out mass emails, she’s all friendly and acting like she knows who it is that she’s interacting with and cares about them. However, when I arrived, not only was she completely disinterested in who I might be, but she failed to even state what her name was. I didn’t bother asking her because I already knew her name and what she does. I found it funny how someone could be such a beggar in social media, yet totally didn’t promote herself IRL. What sense does it make to make contacts with people via computer and then alienate them in person?
OTOH… There are lots of people that I met during PodCampNYC or at various Twitter Meetups or Meetup Meetups that are either AS GENUINE as they appear online or even MORE SO. 😀 A lot of what we experience of people on the net is merely the characters they’re portraying in their “shows”. When the cameras aren’t rolling, and it’s down to one-on-one communication and interaction, that’s where people really shine or they don’t. That’s where you get to see how people act when there’s nothing in it for them. No audience. No revenue-sharing. No business deals. Just you and them. Person to Person. Face to Face. What’s it like for you to be around them? What’s it like for them to be around you?
Ultimately, the question “Who are you?” is unimportant. What’s important is how you carry yourself and interact with others. On the spur of the moment, when you meet someone, how do you react to them? How do you interact with them? Do you act differently based on their accomplishments or who they know? Can you have a good time with people that are willing to have a good time with you? What’s the threshold above which you’re willing to interact with someone standing next to you? Someone that sends you a social media ‘friends request’? Someone that’s a friend of a friend of yours, but you haven’t had personal contact with yet?
Is social media merely a networking tool for you, or are you looking to enrich your life by meeting interesting and intelligent people and cultivating relationships with them?
Due to a series of unfortunate circumstances (all of my own creation), this video was filmed by Annie Boccio and uploaded to the internet. We are going to discuss the errors I made that led to this and how YOU can avoid this from happening to YOU in the future. 😀
Error #1: Do NOT hang out with people who post pictures and videos to the internet. 🙂
I wasn’t paying attention and started doing my usual bar routines that I do to people who never record it. I always leave the situations feeling like I had fun messing with people’s minds, and that by the next morning, it would all fade away and I can forget about it or do it again the next night if I so choose. 🙂
What I wasn’t paying attention to was that we were @ PodCampNYC and I was literally SURROUNDED by media-makers. I’m used to being the only one in the room interested in documenting hangouts, and since I had no intention of recording anything, I was just flowing and enjoying some mental recreation… Next thing I know, I notice a small red camera in Annie’s hands, and as Roxanne CoughBenedictArnoldCough Darling mentioned, it was time to change my tune! 😀
Error #2: Make sure you have a feasible and smooth-sounding counter-statement to what you were saying before the camera was turned on. 🙂
When I saw Annie’s camera, I blanked. 🙂 Whatever I had been talking about completely left my mind, and I had the choices of either saying something opposite or saying nothing at all. I really wanted to say NOTHING, but I decided to “go big or go home”. I decided to challenge myself to come off smooth and convincing at the drop of a hat on a topic that I never talk about = EPIC FAIL! 😀
If you’ve read any of the DatingGenius series, you know that the basic premise is that people suck in general and that the sooner you realize this, the better you’ll be able to handle the curveballs that relationships throw at you. The opposite of “people suck” is “people are good”, and I realized practically immediately after accepting my own challenge to GO FOR IT that I have no rolodex of GOOD things to say about people in general.
To go off on that tangent for a second… I believe that people SHOULD be “good” to begin with. I hardly see ‘doing the right thing’ as a reason to give someone props. It’s like Chris Rock said… Don’t brag about taking care of your kids… You’re SUPPOSED to take care of your kids! 😀 (for the reading-impaired, CoughTymeCough, I am making an example. I do NOT have any kids! :D) So, naturally, what’s wrong with your relationship or your perception of reality is that you fail to recognize how wack people can really be. Without that recognition, you can’t solve the problems of your own relationship because you never look in the right places. So, when things are right about a relationship, they’re SUPPOSED to be right, so there’s no reason to talk about them or have them readily mentally available. This is why I was suddenly at a loss when I ordered myself to “say nice things”.
Unfortunately for me, as I scanned backwards through history for something nice to say about women, I initially slid back to the 1960’s and Women’s Lib (apparently known as Second-Wave Feminism), but quickly landed on the rocky bottom of Women’s Suffrage. I then produced some drivel about equal pay and women driving tanks in the military. Pathetic. 🙂 My mind was racing too fast to notice the look on Rox’s face, but that brings us to error #3.
Error #3: Do not try this 180-degree style with someone with whom you’ve already had intelligent conversations. 🙂
In another split-second, spur-of-the-moment calculation that occurred at the same time I decided to try to talk my way out… I had been counting on Rox to back my play. Unfortunately for me, I’ve had hours of genuine, intelligent conversation with her over the time we’ve known each other, so it was clear to her that I was merely spewing propaganda and poorly-prepared propaganda at that! 🙂 The look on her face is “I don’t even BELIEVE that he’s saying this stuff! :/” So that backfired as well, and she mentions on tape that I was saying something completely different before Annie pressed REC.
Error #4: Do not hope that the fliming is over and go back to what you were talking about. 🙂
Clearly, by clip #2 in Annie’s video, I was no longer thinking about the camera, which is why a) I’m back to my regular mode of conversation and b) I’m suddenly wearing glasses. I’m clearly restarting the “on camera” mental functions because I speak ambiguously and appear to make an error. I say
“Dating and women in New York City? (stalling) Well… (stalling) um… (stalling) Women… should be, uh… (thinking) nice as possible to guys in New York City because… they’re outnumbered…”
Jonny Goldstein calls me on this “error” before I get to continue my statement, and I end up agreeing with him about the mistake, making myself look worse! 🙂 The “they” that are outnumbered are the men. The proper continuation of the sentence is “Women should be as nice as possible to guys in New York City, because they’re outnumbered and can choose any women they want out of the 210,820 surplus single females in this town. BUT… Of Course… That didn’t work out for me either, because I was winging it.
Having said all that… How many preparations have I made in case this ever happens again?
This was a complete anomaly. We were at a social media gathering. We all knew of each other to some degree because of blogging and videoblogging. There were cameras all over the place. I don’t think I’ve ever shown up in so much random media at one time. I got lax and stared entertaining our little group of Rox, Joe, Annie and Jonny with some DatingGenius shenanigans and received a visual lesson in how poorly I play things off when I’m trying to talk about things I never think about.
Maybe I should practice filming telling a chick I love her… In case I ever mean it! 😀