To Start Using YouTube or Not To Start Using YouTube

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I’ve spent a lot of time lately discussing social media with friends and colleagues alike.  What platforms are the best, what should I be using, what are you using, what are best practices and many other questions have arisen.

The theme that seems to have a few of us thinking the hardest is videos and social media.  When I first started using the internet back in middle or high school I had to connect using AOL dial-up internet.  Things like Facebook, Twitter, Vine, Instagram and YouTube didn’t exist.  We had AIM for chatting, AIM bios for personalization, sites like gay.com for dating or sexual rendezvous and general chat rooms for online discussions.  If you wanted a blog you had a livejournel.com account or something of that nature.

We were simple back then, but have come a long way in just the past two decades.  As social media sites started to popup I was one of the first to accept the call.  I joined Myspace and dedicated some of my social time to Facebook back in college, but now I find myself falling behind.

Yes I do have an active Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and WordPress account, but what about all the other services out there.  Should I care about Pintrist or Vine?  Should I create a regularly updated YouTube channel? What would my subject matter be?

My colleague had the best idea.  Her thought was that I should put a Nanny Camera, or other affordable hidden camera, in my house to just catch the random musings and interactions of everyone who passes through. From there I could edit the videos down to two minute segments.  Knowing the things that come out of my mouth my colleague banks on these videos being entertaining.

I think it’s a funny idea, but I need more than that.  What can I do on YouTube that I can’t do on WordPress.  What can I say audibly, that I can’t write?  What can I express in a video that I can’t express with an Instagram photo and a little descriptive text?

Maybe I am just too old for this stuff, but I am only 28.  I can’t be too old to figure out the point of a dedicated video service.  Maybe I’ll give it a try sometime and see what you all think.

Please share your thoughts in the comments. I’d love to hear your thoughts on Vine and YouTube.  Do you love it or hate it? Is there a point or is it pointless?

How has social media changed your life or been used in your life?

The recent announcement (and by recent I mean in the past few hours) that Facebook will be purchasing Instagram, I had to think a bit about social media and what I have used it for, how it has changed my life and what would be different if I didn’t use it so frequently. 

Thanks to social media I:

  1. Met my husband via MySpace back in 2004. 
     
  2. Won backstage VIP tickets to a Blondie concert via Twitter!
     
  3. Found someone to rent my apartment so that I could break my lease utilizing and integrating Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook. 
     
  4. Raised close to $40,000 from an entirely online and social media event for a local not-for-profit organization utilizing and integrating Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, Email, Text and the Internet. 
     
  5. Used Facebook, Twitter and other platforms to integrate social media into 6 live fundraisers over the past 4 years. 
     
  6. Met numerous new friends via Twitter and FourSquare.
     
  7. Reconnected with former high school friends via Facebook. 
     
  8. Sparked a religious debate over the separation of church and state and stopped talking to a sibling due to this debate. 
     
  9. Reached over 450 new supporters for a local not-for-profit while raising $1,000 for the same organization at the same time. 
     
  10. Became more competitive in the job market thanks to my understanding and background in social media. 

How has social media changed your life? What things have you used it for?