There is some anti social media sentiment floating around – I’ve seen this before and it does ebb and flow a bit. It’s largely based on this sneaking feeling that we are oversharing on the web, and the inevitable time sink when consuming or publishing on social media (and the internet in general). You know when you suddenly look up and two hours has vanished? Yeah, that.

It is interesting to see this being picked up by developers and advertisers. Here are 2 examples of how this is translating into the app and advertising space.

Diesel ran a competition to win one of their retro Pre-Internet Shoes. Entry to this competition was by not using social media – the more platforms you signed up to shun for a period of time, the faster the challenge was completed and you were entered into the competition. The competition app monitored whether you’d Liked, Post or Shared on Facebook for 72 hours (shorter if you added Twitter or Instagram in as well). If you did, then you were out.

(Sorry, the competition has finished).

The second example is this Avoid The Shopping Crowds app by a team in Netherlands potentially has a lot of gotchas.

It analyses Foursquare, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Gowalla to see where the social media activity is, then does some magical algorithmic calculation based on crowds density, and voila – it will tell you where everyone isn’t (and presumably get a park first time round the car park). If it works, it would be awesome at Christmas shopping time.

PS – one of the gotchas is that it is only available in Amsterdam. Sorry.

It will be interesting to see if more of these examples surface, or whether we reset our expectations gradually over time, and the oversharing and time sinking become more acceptable – or perhaps we subtly  change our behaviour?

While writing this, I was reminded of this blog where a Kiwi fellow had hooked up his house to the internet. Visitors to his website could see how many times the fridge door had been opened, how busy the catflap had been that day, which lights were on in the house (including the ability to turn some of them on and off yourself), and even how many times the toilet had been flushed (no cheating on the drought restrictions here). It is no longer active, but still an interesting experiment in ‘frictionless sharing’ as the folks at Facebook would call it.

Spudooli House