Social media: The Never-Ending Now

These are “broad swathes” of “context” (as I’d like to put it) but is a chilling reflection of how bad social media is. It is designed for virality through “negative news”. My “love affair” with Twitter ended a long time back when I realised that individuals are only using it as their personal megaphones. It achieves zilch. The engagement rates are pathetic (but, hey, it is a million-dollar valuation!)

The structure of our social media feeds place us in a Never-Ending Now. It sucks us into a temporal myopia. Like hamsters running on a wheel, we live in an endless cycle of ephemeral content consumption — a merry-go-round that spins faster and faster but never goes anywhere.

Consider the time-bias of our major social media feeds:

Snapchat: 24 Hours or Less

Instagram Stories: 24 Hours or Less

The Instagram Feed: 3 Days or Less

Facebook: 5 Days or Less

Twitter: 2 Days or Less

2018 isn’t the end of history. Rather, the human story — from our Neanderthal roots, to our Paleolithic ancestors, to the Roman Empire, to the fall of the Berlin Wall, to the here and now — is still unfolding. Stuck in the fury of social media, we’re swept up in dizzying chaos like leaves in a gale force wind. We’re trapped in a Never-Ending Now — blind to our place in history, engulfed in the present moment, overwhelmed by the slightest breeze of chaos.

via The Never-Ending Now — David Perell

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