I don’t really remember not being on facebook or not being on Twitter or not emphatically promoting the use of social media in traditional media.  So it’s very surprising to me to realize I’ve only been at this social media thing for just over a year.  That’s right I only started my personal facebook page just over a year ago, and only joined Twitter 10 months ago.

I do remember years ago my younger friends who had just graduated from college talking about facebook.  I thought, “oh that’s nice, but not for me.”  Outside of work I rarely worked on the computer.  I had a couple of friends and family members that I would occasionally chat with through MSN IM or Gmail Chat.  Otherwise I used the Internet at home to check my email and to pay the bills.

I admit, outside of breaking news times, I only used the Internet to keep up on and to search for news while at work.  At home I relied on the television and newspaper.   I wasn’t blind to what resources on the Internet could provide to the newsroom, or blind as to the struggles of newspapers and other media outlets to understand the Internet.  I just didn’t want to be a part of it.  (Are you shocked?  It’s true.)

For the longest time I had an outright hatred for the Internet.   Someone I once loved deeply chose the online gaming world and porn over me.  I only share this because he’s the one first who said this truth out loud, during one of our last counseling sessions before we went our separate ways.  Next I say this was not the only thing that broke us; we each had a part in what happened.  But my years of anger turned into disgust for computers, games, the World Wide Web. 

Then three years later because of love I signed up for facebook.  On 8-8-08 I married my husband Shawn.  A few days later my coworker on the desk asked me if I’d seen our wedding pictures on facebook yet.  I told him no I hadn’t and asked him to let me see them.  He told me no.  He told me to get my own account to see them.

So I did.  I was amazed to see wedding pictures from friends, coworkers, family and even Shawn all on this network called facebook.   The number of friends on facebook quickly grew and I found new ways to stay in touch and involved with friends I’d barely spoken to in years.  I was hooked – although I still don’t like to play many games, so I don’t do mafia or grow crops or bejewell? anything.  The only game you’ll catch me playing and truly enjoying is Rockband with my boys.

I have worked hard, and have slipped a few times, in not getting mad, jealous really, when I would find Shawn on the computer at home.  Now he finds me at the computer on Twitter, facebook, plurk, reading blogs and searching for news articles.  With our ever growing needs of using the computer, we really should discuss purchasing a second computer, or at least a laptop!  We even for the first time last week started to watch programming on Hulu and the network sites, CBS, ABC, NBC, Fox, etc.  (For the first time in forever we watched ads too, but that’s a topic for another blog post.)

Thinking of this and realizing how far I’ve come in such a short time, truly does amaze me.  Using social media networks as resources as a journalist and to be a part of various communities, just makes sense to me.  I want to shout at others who are still so afraid of it.  In these instances I need to take a breath and remember where I’ve been and remember not long ago I was much like them.