What a year it’s been here at ULTRAsomething World Headquarters. First, I swapped the horse and buggy for one of those new-fangled automobile thingies. Then, in rather rapid succession, I ditched the transistor radio in favor of an iPod; threw out the old ‘rabbit ears’ antenna and replaced it with what the kids call “cable TV;” and fired poor Beatrice, whose adroit stenography skills enabled my dictated mumblings to be transcribed onto the world wide web. At ULTRAsomething, we believe in responding quickly and decisively to all necessary innovations.
So when all those social media types kept saying that ULTRAsomething should have a Facebook page, I was able to point smugly to the fact that I already owned numerous facebooks. I had, in fact, discovered their remarkable restorative powers years ago — how splaying them across one’s face would diminish a room’s ambient light, thus improving one’s napping efficiency and mental prowess.
But here’s the thing: “Facebook” means something completely different to these people! Although ULTRAsomething thrives on the leading edge of technology, we’re not ones to just blindly follow every fad that comes down the highway. We do our research. So I asked these social media people, “What will a Facebook page do for ULTRAsomething?”
“It will let people like you,” came the answer.
“But people already like us,” I responded.
“Yes, but this gives them a demonstrative means to show that they like you.”
“But people already show us they like us by visiting the ULTRAsomething web site.”
“Yes, but the people who like you have friends and associates who don’t know about you, so this is also a way for them to show other people that they like you.”
“Sounds like a pyramid scheme,” I replied.
And, with that, I chalked up another victory against banality. Frankly, I just couldn’t fathom how Facebook could benefit ULTRAsomething or its fans. Sure, every time I wrote a new article, I could notify my ‘fans’ on Facebook. But if someone was really my fan, they were already subscribed to the RSS feed.
Over the years, ULTRAsomething’s purpose has evolved. My original intention was that it be a simple and classic “web log” — a place where I could make small observations, ask for opinions, offer assistance, deliver some news, post a few photos and, in general, have a low-key web interaction with my clients. But as the years went by, ULTRAsomething became a lot less “blog like” and a lot more “thoughtful.” My articles become virtual word tomes full of satirical, tongue-in-cheek commentary on camera gear, photography, and the philosophy behind it all. ULTRAsomething grew far beyond its original scope, and it no longer offered a place to make small observations, ask for opinions, offer assistance or deliver some news. I needed to think of a way to make ULTRAsomething more communal without modifying its current structure. For the benefit of my neural connections, I assumed a restful position on the sofa and commenced pondering — how could I possibly socialize all this media?
I awoke suddenly and with a start. “Facebook!” I exclaimed, slapping myself hard upon the forehead, knocking my old-school facebook to the floor. “I need to fire up the Wang, get on the information superhighway, and research that Zuckerberg guy!”
And thus it has come to pass. ULTRAsomething has a Facebook page. People who actually like ULTRAsomething can now virtually “like” us on Facebook. It will become a sort of clearinghouse for all those little things I wish to share with the ULTRAsomething community, but that don’t warrant a full-blown article. Think of ULTRAsomething’s Facebook site as the equivalent of the “special features” section of a DVD… huh? What’s that? People don’t watch DVD’s anymore? It never ends, does it?
©2011 grEGORy simpson
ABOUT THESE PHOTOS: “Facebook,” a self portrait, was shot with a Leica M9 and a 28mm f/2 Summicron lens. “Web Access Portal” was shot with a Leica M9 and a Voigtlander 50mm f/1.1 Nokton lens.
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