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Opinion: The darkness of digital

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Opinion: The darkness of digital

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Published by Jon Land for 24dash.com in Housing

Opinion: The darkness of digital Opinion: The darkness of digital

24housing deputy editor Brian Church takes issue with 'PR toads' and the current social media ‘fad’. Don’t bother to tweet him, he probably won’t reply.

We have a terrible secret at 24housing. One of us hates social media, despises digital generally and wants to return to the Stone Age except for those really good 20% discount vouchers on ‘Heartbeat’ DVDs, seasons 5-8.

That person would be me. I’m allowed out once a week.

Now I don’t want to rain on today’s CIH Housing Goes Digital conference. I hope it’s a big success. I just don’t think it’s the future.

Why dump on digital?

It’s partly linked with my love-hate relationship with PR. Years back I gave up a good media job because I was exhausted and wanted half the hours for more money. I got this in return for a life of boredom and toeing the line.

Now back in journalism, I am trying to bring both sides together with my neutral ‘6 THINGS I REALLY HATE ABOUT YOU PR TOADS’ for the social housing conference chat circuit (invites @churchiechat). This quickly became another 6 things and now it’s up to 124, which is especially hypocritical as the first thing I hate is any list of more than 3 items.

I’m linking PR and the digital world because you lot pretend more than anyone to embrace the ‘Revolution’. For the record, it’s not a revolution, it’s a fad. Take twitter. All that happens is A tweets; B retweets A; C comments on B’s retweet of A; A comments on C’s comment; D (who is actually B) retweets A’s original comment. And so on. I’m joking over D but it really is one long irritating lovefest by nobody but yourselves. And you know where you can shove your bloody hashtags #sundontshine

What’s that? It’s got to count because you trend on Twitter? Well, how can I put this? With a couple of exceptions, I don’t believe you. I’m not calling you a liar. I believe you believe you’re trending on Twitter if that helps #doublevodka

Staying with Twitter, what I really despise is its falseness. New world, 24-7, 365 days a week? Total crap! Nearly all of you (apart from the ‘top 50 in social media’ diehards) knock it on the head at 5pm for crying out loud (or 2pm Fridays).

And the worst thing of all: you’re so terrifyingly corporate. No criticism or genuine comment but mere sycophantic pandering to your own bosses, who notice the brown nosing much quicker than in the old days. Promotions all round!

Here ends the Wednesday Whinge by @churchiechat

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