Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Social Networking – Perhaps a useful tool after all

When I first started out in the photography business the formula for success seemed very simple. Make great pictures and get them in front of potential buyers. That hasn't changed. Of course, back then we didn't have fax machines, answering machines, or personal computers. We didn't e-mail, Facebook, blog or twitter.

As I scramble madly to keep up with all this new technology, and the resulting screens all demanding my attention, it occurs to me that even though everything has changed, nothing has changed! It is still about creating great work and getting it in front of the appropriate people. We have different tools and a lot more choices now. For those of us in stock photography we have a whole lot of new business models too. Should I "micro" as well as "twitter"?

By at least getting involved in these tools I can see which ones don't seem to work for me and which do. By actually participating I can determine which ones I find onerous and which ones actually contribute to my life and wellbeing. At this, admittedly early point in the game, I have my doubts about the fit between Facebook and me. However, I am finding twitter kind of fun and perhaps even useful. The jury is still out, but at least I am starting to get a sense of things, something that certainly wouldn't happen if I hadn't made the decision to get my feet wet.

Also important for me, by getting involved I can at least let go of the angst of not knowing. I can make informed decisions. And I am, slowly but surely, becoming informed. I am becoming more informed in two different ways. Obviously, by trying out these tools I am learning, but also the tools are actually getting me more involved with my peers--- increasing even more the information sharing that leads to greater understanding.

What lead to this post was my realization this morning that, as I looked at the "tweets" from my fellow "twitters" I was feeling closer to them, communicating more, and learning. Imagine that!

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