The One Sure Thing About Rudy Caseres is That Nothing is For Sure.
The funny thing about Snapchat and other trendy social networks is that it wasn't created as a way to interact with brands or get famous.
You were just supposed to follow your friends (and the occasional potential hookup).
Why do you think it's so unintuitive to add people not in your contacts?
It was just supposed to be a silly cellphone application to post selfies without your grandma seeing it and leaving an awkward comment.
But no! People who are not your friends use it to promote their personal brands.
And we follow because our real friends are boring compared to them.
Eventually, we can't keep up with producing new content and become passive consumers.
Why bother posting silly mishaps and triple-chin selfies when social media "celebrities" are doing the hard work for you?
The logical consequence is that these social networks will implement a reshare feature leading to 90% of your "friends" posts being recycled content.
And a chunk of that recycled content will be "celebrities" promoting corporate brands they mostly likely couldn't care less about.
It's already happened to Facebook, Vine and Instagram and it's obviously happening to Snapchat right now.
I can't think of one social network my close friends actually use that isn't a front for serving advertisements and wouldn't exist without them.
The only brands I respect grow their customer base through organic word-of-mouth because what they're selling is legitimately useful.
They don't need Facebook, Instagram, et al to pull that off. They just need human beings giving a shit.
Think of your favorite used bookstore or mom-and-pop café or even your therapist.
They most likely don't have a "social media strategy."
That doesn't mean you will abandon them if they don't post tone-deaf Grumpy Cat memes or the weekly #tbt that gives you ALL THE FEELS.
I give up all hope in the Planet Earth Experiment the day my therapist creates a Snapchat story promoting the #truth of bipolar disorder.
Voices in my head on fleek, SON
Rapid-Cycling is not Bae.
Just had a catatonic episode at yoga class, ugh!
#firstworldproblems #relatable #stilllookcutetho
And so on and so forth.
The history of entertainment starts off with small tribes on the fringes of society dicking around as if no one is watching.
Which sadly devolves into authority figures controlling the entire medium with self-censorship and brand engagement.
We just wanted to express ourselves. Laughing, crying, or spreading knowledge—We just thought it would be easier if someone else would host the platform.
Brands exploit our desire for convenience to sell us products that only seem to further complicate our day-to-day lives while vacuuming out our wallets.
I love to write and read but all popular social networks tell me I need to use "rich media" in order to "engage" with my friends and followers.
"You won't get anywhere just posting blocks of text and especially if they're audio-only"
"Millenials only want content that can be easily digested on their smartphones."
"Their attention spans can't handle anything longer than a 15 sec square video of fat furry animals being #adorbs or a screenshot of DAMN AUTOCORRECT!"
"IT NEEDS TO BE SHARABLE!!!"
So, it's not like anyone is stopping you or I from just hanging out face-to-face but that seems to be tooooo #throwback for most.
"Like, 4Real brush, just DM me. On Twitter. Or Facebook. Or Instagram. Or even fucking Pinterest."
To that I say:
Just don't email me because Ain't Nobody Got Time For That!
Just don't pass out in my bathtub after spending the night telling our best We're-Going-To-Hell-For-This jokes.
Just don't shit in my toilet and play it off cool when you finally come out the bathroom—even though there is no fooling the master.
Just don't ask me to drive you to your abortion appointment because I'm the only one who will let you make that decision without passing judgment.
Just don't ask me to be your Valentine's date after Asshole Boyfriend No. 688433 left you—even though I hate dates and really should save my money for soap.
Just don't ask me to sing the Dan Band version of Total Eclipse of the Heart at your funeral—even though that would be wildly inappropriate and I just can't hit them high notes anymore.
Oh, who I am kidding? Of course you can ask me!
Just cut out the social fronting and say it to my fucking face.
Because the Snapchats of the world can never sincerely capture the terror of living without putting it through a filter.
The people I love deserve better.
I don't want to hide from them. Behind a 5" LCD screen at 1920x1080 resolution.
There is no pixel too dense, no screen too immersive, no UX too intuitive that can ever serve as a platform to articulate with justice the terror of living.
Life is terrifying—regardless of brands spending billions to get you and I to believe otherwise.
They want us to believe that if we just spend more money life will eventually stop being terrifying.
"What's that you say? You still can't deal with the terror?"
"Well, we can sell you this portal to buying even more SHIT which is sure to solve all your problems."
"If you still have problems we look forward to selling you the upgraded model which will replace your woefully outdated SHIT buyer."
"I know we said last year's model was the alpha-and-the-omega of terror eradication but we are SERIOUS this time."
You get the picture.
Social networks like Snapchat and Instagram were designed to serve as the platform for being silly with your closest friends (and the occasional potential hookup) through the magic of the internet.
That original philosophy has been tossed out because there is no profit in hosting communication between people who are already friends.
We can do that without a cell phone application and have been for a very long time.
I want everyone who agrees with this post to try their best at communicating with their close friends without using an app that let's brands serve you ads.
That app doesn't exist.
Unless you want to call it Saying it to Each Other's Fucking Face.
That app will always be #brandfree.