There are certain media that I use on a daily basis, without fail. For example, I mindlessly scroll down my Facebook newsfeed in a way to procrastinate whatever I have to do. I also do the same with Tumblr, but its effect is much better than the effect of scrolling through Facebook. My phone is practically attached to my phone 24/7; I’m always in contact with at least one person online through apps like FB Messenger or Whatsapp or Viber.
And then there are media I use less often, but still significantly. On a regular weekday like today, I’ll wake up and read my twitter feed, realize how many people new tweets there are each day, give up, and get out of bed. That’s right, I’m on social media before I get out from under the covers. I’ll read the daily Metro on my morning commute – background music downloaded from Spotify plays from my phone. By the time I hit Davisville Station, I’ll be texting someone (why is there no signal underground? It’s not that hard to achieve). When I get to school, I’m usually a little early so I can talk to my new friends about my day. In-person, verbal storytelling: it’s truly irreplaceable.
Especially on sites like Twitter and Tumblr, people are willing to share a lot about their personal lives. On Twitter we’ve collectively outgrown the “I’m pooping now” tweets, and have started sharing more general things such as things we learn from our classes, quotes from real life that we have to immortalize, funny things we think about to show everyone how hilarious/thought-provoking we are. For example, everything I post on Twitter is for other people because I personally know most of the people who follow me, and I know that my tweets can make/break their impression of me. On the other hand Tumblr is very different. For the most part, I don’t know any of the people who follow me. They’re mostly strangers from around the world, and because of that, I feel more comfortable to share deeply personal thoughts – the kinds of things I wouldn’t want people who know me to see.
Sharing things online is relieving in a sense. When you’re happy, excited, sad, or angry, a natural response is to want to share those things with our friends so they can be happy, excited, sad, or angry with us. When the people you want to share things with aren’t available (all my friends from high school go to schools outside Toronto), you post your feelings online so that others, even strangers, can come along for the emotional ride with you.