Forgive me, this may not be focused on social media, but I need to rant.
I recently read a column about mobile phone etiquette. It offered good advice, such as not sending or reading text messages while with another person, avoiding long voice messages and dropping the “lap reading” of email or Twitter feeds (there, I brought this back to social media).
What really got to me was a response from “Paul,” who seems to think he can hold a conversation, reply to an email and consider important company business all at the same time. Anyone with him at the time should feel lucky to have one-third of his attention.
Let’s get real.
The human mind — at least mine — can‘t do justice to a conversation, an email and a business problem at the same time. Jumping from task to task is a prerequisite of today’s busy world. But to take on three important tasks simultaneously? Can’t be done.
And what’s wrong with occasionally turning off the ringer and letting voice, email and Facebook posts (social media again) collect while truly paying attention to what another human being has to say?
But if I had to have a lunch meeting with Paul, maybe I’d leave my ringer on and check email, too. What do you think?
“If I’d had more time I’d have written you a shorter letter” is one of my favorite quotes. I’m not sure who said it first — I’ve seen it attributed to TS Elliot, Mark Twain and even a couple of French authors.
Those of us who spend our professional lives writing, understand how difficult it is to be concise. Say what you mean in as few words as possible. Spilling your guts on the keyboard won’t do.
Today’s social media requires even more discipline. No longer do we count words, now we count characters — even the spaces. Twitter messages allow you 140 characters — hence the name my partner suggested for this blog. But then if you hope to be retweeted take another 10-15 characters away. Hashtags — tighter yet.
So for all the complaints that today’s young people lack writing skills, maybe that’s not the case. They seem perfectly comfortable saying what they mean very concisely. It’s a new way of communicating.
From time to time we hope to share our ideas about communication with you. And we’d love to hear from you. Please be concise.
Pretty obviously this is the Daum Weigle, Inc. blog. We’re just another communications company out there trying to blab about us and our customers in any way that we can. We specialize in old school and new wave communications. We realize where the future is, but that doesn’t mean we don’t know where we came from (somewhere right behind that preposition). So, as far as a specialty, I don’t think we really have one, other than solid communication that works. And it all works in its own place.
Everything goes today – news releases, Twitter, Facebook – hell, even sandwich boards have their place. It’s an info centric world and as word people we find that exciting. So, that’s what we are going to talk about – talking, writing, hand gestures, signals (even smoke).
Welcome to the blog world!
Robin will be talking about a lot of things – we hope. She has a real interest in 140 words. Twitter is her thing and I am looking forward to hearing her wisdom on hashtags, lists , etc.
Meredith should be checking in on a number of subjects including her expertise in FB. She also handles most of the complaints on Facebook, so she really deserves a chance to vent herself.
And Sara is going to have some great tips on dealing with the fourth estate. She talks with reporters and editors all day long.
Jon is the Mark Twain of the group – expect some wizened observations and get ready for some real sarcasm – not for the faint of heart.
You’re going to have to stay on your toes with this group.