In the old days it was hard enough being dropped as friends by your schoolmates, but the Internet has allowed this to grow to a whole new level. Andy of Andycaster.net pondered this very subject here on Utterz.
Andy is not the only victim of being dropped. It’s happening to your’s truly daily. They key is that today folks aren’t dropping each other over petty grievances, but something else entirely. We are not adding to their lives.
That’s right. You’ve been added to someone’s online network and been quietly minding your own business. Occassionaly you say hello, or share a link, or return the favor and follow links they send along. Perhaps they have a blog you’ve visited from time to time. When the rubber meets the road though, you just aren’t adding enough to make having you as a contact worth their time. Now how is that for a slap in the virtual face.
But what are they really saying? Is it just that your boring (to them)? Or is it something else? There is trend among some of my contacts lately to start removing contacts that they don’t know in person or at least second hand. Their reasoning is twofold. They worry about sharing too much with anonymous strangers, and they don’t know enough about those people to enjoy their content. In fact, it’s rarely characterized as personal by those doing the dropping.
In my case, I’ve been dropped by a friend because of the high volume of my Internet output, especially on Twitter. This is a person who follows me also on Flickr and on my various blogs. Again, it’s not personal, or better stated, it wasn’t about me, it’s about that person’s ability to consume and enjoy what they consume.
The Internet now provides the ability to flood ourselves with content. No longer just static web pages, but RSS feeds, email notifications, and tweets dinging us throughout our day. What was once fun and useful quickly becomes worse than noise.
So what can we take away from this? A few key things I believe, but I’d be interested in what you have to share on this topic as well.
1) It’s not personal and you have plenty of contacts
2) Don’t broadcast noise – keep it short and keep it interesting
3) Get to know your contacts – become more than a stranger – you might turn those contacts into actual friends.
If you don’t have enough folks you’re following today, come join me on Twitter. I’m @tojosan.