Social media is making us all skeptics & that’s not good 

This post is by Om Malik from Om Malik

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Earlier this morning, I got a heads up on a new model of sneakers from a sneaker brand called, Greats. I love their Chukka Royals and they are finally bringing out a (Nero) black leather version. I wanted one – making it the third version of the model. I like them enough because they are comfortable, are well made and they don’t cost a lot of money compared to the cool brands. Plus I love Chukkas. It is my go to shoe style when traveling and during summer. So I tweeted about it. And soon enough I got asked if I was an investor in the company? 

That question made me wonder: how much of our social media has become marketing that people actually question something for which you profess your love. I admit, sometimes I have asked myself — so what is that guy selling? I read Medium and one in three are selling something. They are a variation of – my startup flamed, I am amazing, hire me as a consultant. Or look at how amazing my growth hacking idea was for me, so hire me. The “Medium post as a resume replacement” is part of the larger trend – social media as a marketing platform. It isn’t social when you have to question the motives behind “social objects” be shares. 

The impurity of social experience is making me retreat to smaller social circles on a private Slack, WhatsApp, Snapchat and even on Facebook, where I have tried to maintain a high degree of socialablity and intimacy and am not afraid to discuss difficult things. Sure, there is the public place but in the end, I use the platform as a social gathering space. 

And sometimes when I share stuff about our True Ventures startups — I am an investor after all — the old blogger in me is compelled to hashtag and label the posts as such. It is easier to be honest about your motives. Unfortunately, others don’t feel that way, and hence the ongoing degradation of the social experience on platforms. 

Anyway since you asked, no, I am not an investor in Greats, though I think their shoes are an investment. I like their shoes, the price and well I like the founder, Ryan, who is cool guy. He and I have a lot of things – we love Japanese sneakers and weird offbeat clothing brands. We swap names when we find something that is new and fresh. 

Not everything is marketing or about the money! 

March 28, 2016, New Delhi

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