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Uncircling, Unfriending, and Unfollowing

English: Semiotics of Social Networking

Image via Wikipedia

Though I don’t maintain an ironclad bullet list of rules about who I follow in my social networks, certain annoyances move me to uncircle, unfriend, or unfollow persons posthaste. (All three italicized words are social networking neologisms.)

Give me full sentences in some reasonable semblance of English. Persons who write habitually in the abbreviated language used in telephone texting will be cut from my network. If Roger Ebert can write full Twitter updates in 160 characters, so can you — if you care whether I read what you have to say. And you are under no obligation to care whether I read your posts, but I’m sure there are others who feel similarly.

I make exceptions to the abbreviated language rule in an interactive chat, when speed of semi-synchronous communication is essential. I type fast, but even so, I often use abbreviations, ignore upper case, punctuation, and don’t bother to fix typos if it’s obvious what I meant, when in a direct tete-a-tete, where the object is to get as close to the speed of speech as possible. But in such cases, if it’s important enough and available on both ends, video chat is sometimes the better medium.

Persons who insist on using vulgar or obscene speech or profanity do not remain in my networks. I don’t think foul language is funny, and I don’t think it’s colorful. There’s no need for it, particularly when communicating thoughts in front of the whole world. I may give a person one break. The second time they’re gone.

Users whose typical posts or comments consists primarily of LOL, OMG, ROTFL, LMAO, ROTFLMAO, WTF, and that ilk of stupidity strike me instantly as morons. They seem to be just wanting to be seen, like the cretins who walk behind reporters being interviewed on TV and wave or perform shenanigans in front of the camera.

If all you get from a post is a good laugh, then press +1 or Like or re-Tweet it, and if you want to re-share it fine — I like something funny as much as anyone else — but do so without comment. “For as the sound of thorns under the pot, so is the laughter of the stupid one.” — Ecclesiastes 7:6

People who post links to really bad music don’t last long in my circles. I’m a lifetime musician and have precious little time to listen to good music without having to listen to bad music, too.

What’s with this fad for posting pictures of cats? Yes, I like cats and think they can be ridiculously cute, too, but c’mon, man! One a year or so should cover it, right?

These days I check in with Facebook about once a day, and have almost entirely lost my need for Twitter. I’ve moved almost all my social networking activity to Google+, which is far better for a host of reasons beyond the scope of conversation, and well-known to those who have done likewise.

On Google+ I often add large numbers of unknown plusers to a circle, especially by means of recommendations or shared circles. But I keep a watchful eye out for violators, and kick people out frequently.

Let’s keep the high quality rolling on Google+.

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