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Ascent Publication

Your Facebook Friends Are Not Reading Your Writing

Facebook,where everyone you ever met shares everything from the details of their personal lives that we wish they had kept to themselves to pictures of food they probably have no business eating.

The application itself has over a billion downloads and after all it’s exposure of your work that you’re after right? It only makes sense to share what you’ve created onto the channel that most people unfortunately spend most of their time. I can see it now, you will craft up the perfect post and so boldly hit publish in an excited fashion. Then you will share your digital masterpiece on Facebook with all of your family and friends and wait patiently. Only to realize that none of them are reading any of it because they are too busy fabricating their lives and trying to capture it while the moment’s still ripe.

Self centered people are simply more interested in selfies and things that have to do with themselves than they are your writing,photography,small business venture or really anything that isn’t completely about them. Besides,your writing usually involves links and that is a direct threat to the mindless scrolling they intend on doing in their best effort to ignore their wives, children and how mind numbingly dull their non digital lives really are. Also, the amount of other peoples complaints they will be missing out on reading while they take six minutes out of their lives to read something half intelligible doesn’t seem like a sacrifice your average Jerry Springer fan is willing to make.

Besides who’s even on Facebook anymore? Bet you can’t find a way to annoy me with your annoying writing via Snapchat bro.

In all seriousness,the way people consume content is changing in a significant fashion, as many of us are finding out the hard way. When a sports conglomerate like ESPN is firing a hundred writers at a time for not being screaming Stephen A. Smith, the rest of us need to take a look at that. Especially before we start judging the amount of views,likes and shares we’ve been getting too critically. If people are not reading Buster Olney’s article on the Red Sox what on earth gives you the right to be upset when yours doesn’t go viral? We need to adapt and adjust, not complain and quit.

We need to reevaluate not only how we distribute content but also the content we distribute and to whom. More importantly we need to not misinterpret no views as no talent or a sign to stop. If you truly believe in what you are doing or creating, you will find a way to put it in front of others. When that way stops working, you will find a new medium (see what I did there) to do so. In fact, you should be implementing the new way you’re going to do so before the old way stops working.

Better yet, don’t be satisfied with the one way that’s working because there is no telling when it will become the way that isn’t.

The main lessons I want others to pull from this is that Facebook as a distribution platform isn’t what it once was. There is too many other socially engaging and more trendy app buttons right next to users’ Facebook icons. Even the people that encourage me to write and ask me why I haven’t been writing when i’m not, aren’t reading my writing. Me worrying about that would be like worrying about the sun coming up, I don’t concern myself with it, I expect it.Your best bet for sharing anything you’ve written or created on Facebook is by copying and pasting it or inserting it directly into the status bar. People have convinced themselves they are too busy to click a link. Adult attention deficit disorder,if not once a real thing,seemingly is now. Many lengthy posts unfortunately end up 40% unread. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t post them but that also doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be aware.

The two hours you spent writing that three page article and the additional hour spent editing may have been better spent carefully crafting up more intriguing content in half that time, then using the remaining time figuring out how to actually have it consumed or what you can do differently to put it in higher demand. Don’t stop writing just because people would rather aimlessly stress about their own lives as they mindlessly scroll through their phone than read. Reading is changing but it’s not dying, so don’t kill your writing based off a an ugly myth.

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Brian Brewington

Writing About the Human Condition, via My Thoughts, Observations, Experiences, and Opinions — Founder of Journal of Journeys and BRB INC ©