Being Human in The Digital Age

I recently commented on a post by a friend of mine, creative mixed reality producer Evonne (Evo) Heyning, who posed a question:

How can we make LinkedIn posts more *human* and give great value to people?

I’ve written and spoken about Human Marketing before and consult my clients on how to “humanize” their brands – but I’ve wondered if social media posts (and social media content marketing) are the right tools in the first place for connecting with others.

In contemplating Evo’s question in broader terms – not just regarding LinkedIn but all social media and online forums – I posted this in response:

I think “human connection” is platform agnostic and may be more “feature dependent.” It is harder to convey and nurture that connection in “posts” [in social media] and more conducive in forums and email.

Here’s the rest of what I said:

Social media posts have become billboards. No matter how much we talk about “conversing” versus “broadcasting,” we’ve fallen into the trap of “drive-by talking,” often failing to stop long enough on a post to contemplate it, much less comment on it. And those of us posting often move on to our next micro-missive rather than returning and nurturing it as part of a longer-term conversation.

As long as we are on a broadcast/mindless consumption track, we devolve the human connection.

We misuse and abuse social media. Nobody ever really taught us humans how to properly use our ever-changing technology so that it doesn’t consume us.

Technology has transformed us in ways we never imagined – and not all for the good.

Forums within social networks – LinkedIn Groups, Facebook Groups, Google Groups, even email – at least are “places” where we could take more time to contemplate and converse if we paused long enough. Unfortunately, we’ve created an always-on, uber-connected culture with a “Like” button that takes barely a second to click and move on, and we barely BREATHE.

It is less about creating posts for more human engagement and more about returning to being human and connecting.

What do you think? Are we losing our connections despite all this connectivity? Can we “make our posts more human,” and if so, how?

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