What a lonely web we weave

Published May 26, 2016

A recent episode of Note to Self highlighted a really interesting concept that they’re unfortunately calling the ‘Lonely Web.’ The idea is that for all the popular social media posts that get hundreds of views every day, there are those that don’t get any visits at all. It’s an interesting listen, if a little hamfisted at times - you sort of get the feeling that it’s not a huge issue, particularly as not everyone is out there to be famous, and there’s an awkward moment at the beginning where Manoush only just manages to remember there’s a world outside of America. Nevertheless, it’s a thought-provoking podcast with great production values.

I’m calling it the lonely web. It’s a result of thinking about how we access content. Most of it’s through social media and too much content is getting posted every day. It’s getting lost in the noise. A lot of the noise is the product of the social media sites themselves, which encourage us to post everything from our thoughts on the election to what we had for breakfast.

There is something pretty lonely about broadcasting your deepest thoughts and having no one see it, especially in an environment that encourages you to share yourself.

I’m in two minds, really, because firstly, I don’t think people should post random stuff they don’t care about - if you’re having an exciting breakfast, then sure, but every day corn flake updates aren’t necessary. However, I also don’t think people should feel pressure to get any views. Post for yourself and if anything comes of it, that’s fine, and if it doesn’t, that’s also good too. That doesn’t automatically mean you’re lonely.

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