Tony Edwards

Put social back in social media – (not so) live blog - Christian Heilmann

- 3 mins

Christian Heilmann is a developer evangelist for Microsoft. This talk, titled ‘Put social back in social media‘, was given at the TedxLinz event in October 2014.

You can catch up with Christian at his website and twitter.

Chris’s experience in online communities has shown him that many people are addicted to social media. The viral video ‘look up’ was all about having real conversations with those around you. It was about the ‘online generation’ (will there be an offline one next) who have a rising level of depression, partly due to the separation of communities because of social media.

Avoiding communication has always been around us and is nothing new. Look at the picture of a platform from 80 years ago, you will see rows of people buried in newspapers. Today this has been replaced with smartphones, tablets and other shiny rectangles.

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Christian suggests that we should all look around us, start conversations with strangers. Surely it’s better than sitting in awkward silence, reading the same advert over and over.

The internet has made us makers. Is it rude to text and tweet whilst talking to someone. There is the temptation to share everything we do, from sandwiches to cat videos.

Online life is the perfect representation of ourselves, which is groomed. The fast speed of the internet makes us think that we need to produce content all the time, and when we’re not creative we share other things for the sake of it.

This leads to addiction, with many addicted to the dopamine hit of a notification. This is no different to gambling or smoking. Gamification of social media can lead to this. Perhaps this is the reason that arguments and ‘inappropriate’ posts happen in the online world, with users searching for the next dopamine hit.

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Putting anything approaching nudity can lead to blackmail material, all for the sake of a few likes online. If you do this, at least remove the metadata so that the location that the photo was taken cannot be found.

Quantity has replaced quality. The more content the higher the value. B3ta has provided lots of the viral content of the web over the last few years, thanks to the ‘glass cock search’. The over posting of this image lead to the admins shape the content so that original content ranks higher. It also restricted duplicate content. Is this what’s missing from modern social media.

Its time for social media disobedience. Don’t play the numbers game, posting stuff for only numbers. Instead post stuff because it’s awesome and original. Comment instead of reposting, that way you’re enhancing the conversation.

We should also fight misinformation. will tell you if something is real or not, be the person that call out BS statements.

Be surprising. Use grammar. Disagree with someone but thank them for being creative.

Play phone Jenga. Pile phones up on the table at lunch. First person to touch it pays for lunch, forcing conversation.

The stories behind the things are the things that are exciting. Chris met Penelope Pickles after a ping on the Facebook. He get to play with super cute hedgehog. He discovered that the owner was helping with her depression through the hedgehog, talking to the world through the hedgehog. She had people contact her thanking her for helping them through their day. She made a real impact on people’s lives.

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Don’t look up. Don’t look down.

Look sideways, look left, look right. Look inside and out. Look silly, look smart.

Before you know it, you can say ‘look at what I’ve done’.

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