2011, A Year of Being Social.

It was year of discovery, things I never saw myself doing. That alone made it an interesting year.  For starters I set up a Facebook page. Easy for most, swore I never would. Started out with roughly 10 friends; that’s about right. I have several acquaintances and always introduced to new people, but can’t say I call them “Friends.” Nonetheless I now have 475 Facebook “Friends.” Lets just say for argument sake they’re in the vicinity of mutual work environments. And for many 475 is a pittance; some having 4,000. Really! I thought 10 was a stretch. Truth be told I wouldn’t know many of my Facebook “Friends” if I was standing next to them in line at Starbucks. But the strange fact is, I’ve enjoyed getting to know how they live their lives and would like to get to know some better.

I think the term “Friend” has the same problem as the “Like” button. When people tell you of negative news I feel uncomfortable supporting by “Liking” it. How do you show you don’t like the situation? But by “Liking” it, I imagine you’re agreeing with the sentiments. The world of social networking, it’s interesting.

I considered my Facebook experience successful and put together a “Fan” page for Joe Polimeni Photography, my original intention. Facebook doesn’t allow you one without the other. Your fan base is different than your “Friends.” So confusing. All the hype, Google+ was next. It appears to be taking a while to catch on. Regardless, when it does, I’m there.

LinkedIn and Twitter accounts followed. I connected with more than 500 people on LinkedIn, but only have a hand full of followers on Twitter. No matter, I never liaise with anyone on LinkedIn. The only time I “Tweet,” when I post pictures and a blog, a Facebook feature does it automatically.

I began texting. If you’re communicating with anyone younger than 35, that’s the only way. OK, so some are well into their 40’s. I like to call, but that’s me. I did become addicted to my Smartphone, not intentional mind you.

In between I designed and put together a new website with a blog, where you’ll read this. Unlike websites of a few years ago, updating is routine. Making changes, new pictures and the occasional few blog thoughts, it motivates and inspires. It was the vehicle to reinvent myself, again. I lost count on how many times. It’s a love hate thing, so many things to learn, and then more things. You grow.

I set up accounts on Tumblr, Flickr and others. Can’t remember the names,  just bookmark them. And just yesterday, for my final Social event of the season, I would have much rather it include a tux and festive tie, I set up an account on a site called Model Mayhem. I’m socially exhausted and I’m a social kind of guy. My friends, 40 & 50-somethings, think I’m a “Social” guru and ask for my help, if they only knew.

There are days I feel like Indiana Jones dealing with the economy, new Photoshop technology, evolvements in my industry and updating my social sites. But at the end of the day, it’s worth it, or so I’m told by experts.

2011 was a year of firsts, expanding horizons, understanding a generation and learning to communicate within it.

2012? I hope the economy gets better, but have my doubts. That said, the world won’t stand still. Digital cameras will evolve, Photoshop will have more upgrades and Facebook will make changes and expand. And I’ll be there doing my best to evolve with it. I do hope we get back to talking on the phone and less texting, OK it’s just a hope.

Happy New Year.

Joe Polimeni

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