I don’t want to miss anything.., so I stay on-line just a bit longer. Because I stay a little bit longer, there is a little bit more information, or a new follow. Which in turn leads to more information which is easily missed and I don’t want to miss anything.
This paradox is fed by endless Twitter streams and endless Pinterest pages which lure us into a non-stop attention span. But, instead of having one concentrated attention span it is broken up in tiny fragments of 140 characters or a few 100 pixels.
Social media is not helping us with our attention deficit disorders.
A question comes to mind though.
What if I stop scrolling, turn of the notifications or mark them all as read…
What will I miss?
Something important, not likely. Something valuable, that depends on who you follow.
Cost of Atttention
Here I must refer to, in my opinion, a truly valuable article by Srinivas Rao; “Time, attention, and the content creation curve“
The advice given here is about the cost of attention.
A Tweet costing only 1 point and a book 6.
Although this is from a creating perspective, it translates perfectly to the recipient.
I am not saying that 6 Tweets equals a book (of course), the scale is a bit different than that. Srinivas isn’t suggesting this either.
The point is that reading a book is more valuable than reading a similar amount of Tweets on the same subject.
We focus more when reading a book, tend to be less distracted. The content is more focussed too and the chances of you retaining anything go up.
Do you remember the last Tweet you read?
Do you remember the last book you read?
Dealing with the paradox
Subscribe to less clutter. Be more selective in what you read or watch.
Pick your streams carefully, follow and read that which delivers the most value to you or your business.
How do you deal with this social media paradox?