Tuesday, June 18, 2024

One-Way Communication: Anti-Social Media Doesn't Mean Anti-Social

Thanks for the interest in my music!  You know who you are.  If I don't reply to every comment or like or message right away, it's not you, it's me.  

Social media kind of freaks me out a little, and as you can probably tell, I don't use it very often, except to tell you when I have some new music available once in a while. You write some songs, you record them, you make them available for people to stream, but that doesn't mean anyone will find them and stream them, or even know they exist.  You not only have to tell people they exist, you have to market them.  

I mean, you don't have to, but now the streaming services are starting to just remove the songs if they don't get streamed enough, and I want them to remain available.  Popular doesn't always mean good, and good doesn't always mean popular, but that's how it is, and my little cult following might grow, but my music isn't the type to ever achieve mainstream success.  Of course I like the creative part of my hobby, but not the marketing part.  

When you're fiercely independent with a niche audience and zero budget, self-promotion is all you can do, but it feels weird.  If you don't really care if people discover your music or not, maybe you just don't do any self-promotion at all and hope for the best, but if you think it would be cool if your music could reach a larger audience, you bite the bullet.  Hence, my recent shameless social media posts, mostly on Facebook.  

I'm not a regular user of social media, and I typically limit my use to one-way communication announcements and for a little self-promotion and marketing.  No one wants to appear standoffish.  I'm not anti-social, but it doesn't come naturally for me to want to "engage" very much, if at all.  I welcome interaction, but I prefer email, so feel free to reach out:  

I’m more of a long-form type of poster anyway, so although I occasionally tweet, it’s usually just a link to one of my blog posts.  Aside from this blog, and my website, depending on what you consider to be social media, here are links to the main 3 that I use:

So to reiterate, I'm not an anti-social person, even though I'm not a fan of social media.  I am pretty sure I'm an introvert, although if you knew me in the late 80s and early 90s, you would probably find that hard to believe because I had a really active social life.  

I'll admit it, I liked to party.  Too much, for sure.  Partying is what we called it back then around here.  I was in my late teens and early 20s, and like a lot of people in that age range, I sought out celebratory events with peers frequently, often without anything to celebrate.

They say you have to use social media with great caution, and I agree.

I recently asked my nephew, who just finished college, what the most popular social media apps are for people his age.  His #1 answer:  Instagram.  Then he also said TikTok and sometimes Snapchat.

Over recent years, I've become aware that Instagram was popular for solo artists to have an account on.  So, I thought I'd learn more, and maybe sign up.

  • Strike One:  All about photos.  The logo appears to be a camera.  Photo sharing, filters, people tagging, geo tagging, hashtags.  I've already publicly posted way more photos of myself than I ever should have on my website and elsewhere.  I don't like my appearance, especially as I've gotten older.  I don't like seeing photos of myself, don't like getting my picture taken, don't ever take selfies.  This is for young, good looking people, so for me, I'm already thinking no way.
  • Strike Two:  Owned by Facebook. The dreaded and almighty Meta - what a dumb name by the way.  I don't need to further contribute to Mark Zuckerberg's evolution into being a Bond villain buying more islands and building secret lairs, dungeons and spaceships, or whatever the hell weird shit the ultra rich get into.  Plus, he just looks like a guy you want to hit.  How many separate apps do they need that are pretty much all about posting photos of yourself?
  • Strike Three:  'scottcooley' wasn't available.  Some other Scott Cooley beat me to the scottcooley name, so I had to pick scottcooleymusic, which is always another strike against for any social media.
  • Strike Four:  Mobile-first approach.  Seems like one of those mobile-first apps.  Which is probably why I didn't snag scottcooley when I first heard about it, because early on the only way to sign up was via smartphone.  Using the Facebook app on my phone one time years ago cured me of ever using any social media app on my phone ever again.  The endless settings and annoying UI and notifications and ads were just a terrible user experience.  If they don't have a desktop version browser sign up, I never sign up.
  • Strike Five:  Photo required?  Looks like it requires a photo to just make a post.  Like, you have to have a photo ready to go first in order to just type some text.  Again, annoying.  When you hit Create new or whatever, it makes you select a photo or video first before you can do anything else.  I do actually know how to take a picture or video on my phone, but I don't have any I want to share with anyone, so I guess I'm not going to post anything, ever.
  • Strike Six:  Videos too.  Anyone you complain to about Instagram tells you how it can do all these other great things too, and that it's not just for photos.  What they mean is that it allows videos too.  But not long ones, probably.  They mean the short ones people take of their dogs on their phones, and then you get sucked in to watching about 100 of them in a row.  If you don't like seeing yourself in photos, you don't like how you look on video either.
  • Strike Seven:  Seems to be a young person thing.  I grew up when you could enjoy your life without ever using a camera or a phone.  I still enjoy my life without ever using a camera or a phone.  We had these things called memories that were only stored in our brains.  I don't need multiple forms of instant messaging.  Send me a text, leave me a voice mail, and I'll get around to responding eventually when I feel like it if it's important.  That's how I roll.
  • Strike Eight:  You have to follow people.  When I asked someone how they use it, they said you have to follow someone to see content.  I don't want to follow anyone.

Now that I've honestly described my first impression of Instagram, and now that you've likely formed a grumpy-old-man opinion of me, I wanted to let you know that my music is available for using in your reels.  I'm not sure what reels are exactly, but they look like short videos with music in the background and some overlaid text.  

So, if you have a photo or a video or a meme or something, and then you want some background music for it, you can supposedly search for and find Scott Cooley songs to select for that purpose.

Same goes for TikTok:  my music is available on there, and I've become aware that lots of people have used my songs for their short-form videos.

When MTV was new, I thought music videos were cool, and I admit I check out a lot of music that has associated videos on YouTube, mostly just live footage of my favorite bands, but as a music fan and consumer, I definitely prefer to just listen to the audio only.  I think videos can be entertaining, and if they have my music in the background, even more so, but I'm biased.

I'm grateful and appreciative of any interest in my music, whether on the streaming services, or in social media.  As always, if you're one of them who has shown interest, thanks again!

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