In a world of trigger-happy, up-sized, super-boosted, virally-shared instant gratification, what would happen if the opposite took place? Here are 10 acronyms for unsocial media:
BFF – Best Former Friend: The curious intensity of feeling naked when fully clothed around someone you once trusted with your most private thoughts. Unable to tell, when she looks at you from the other side, whether she is being invasive or vulnerable – or just trying to mend the relationship by keeping her distance.
FB – Faceback: The feeling that surfaces when you dive into your timeline and recognise that even if we think that life moves forward, we are all moving facing backwards. Like a rower on a river of memories. He can see where he has been, but not where he is heading – all the time reflecting on what our choices would be, had we only been facing the other way.
LOL – Laugh Out Later: The realisation that something meant to be funny just wasn’t. And that by not adding to the cheer, you may lose the very connection that you have inadvertently cultivated with a buffoon – thus curtailing the possibility of every foreseeable break in your relationship.
NSFW – Not Safe For Wonder: The permission that you must grant yourself to wonder how everything original has already been done, often better, by others who came long before you. That the experiment of human culture has already brimmed its petri-dish of wonder and is now just feeding on itself – crossbreeding old thoughts, retired clichés and repetitive narratives into an unstirred pond of generic mould.
SEO – Search Emptiness Once: The emotional aftermath of a place that is typically not abandoned: your favourite high-street past midnight; the unlit afterhours of your workplace; the eerie silence of a school’s courtyard in the evening; the forlorn echoes of a childhood home. Places that don’t just seem empty but hyper-empty, whose populations are so conspicuously absent they glow like dying stars.
SMO – Social Media Obliteration: The urge to stop the world because you want to get off. To throw caution to the wind; to disconnect and to care less. To relax your grip on life and slip into the ease of knowing little and doing more. Keeping your life spinning on one finger, always in motion, always in play, always on the verge of taking one more fall – before swiftly balancing yourself back into your whirlwind freedom.
SOV – Share of Vision: The crippling disappointment of taking a photograph of something when thousands of similar shots of it already exist. The same sunrise; the same monument; the same masterpiece; the same shot of the same damn thing – whose only upshot is turning an otherwise uncommon subject into a common object made more common by the same money you spent on buying the same iPhone.
UGC – User Generated Confusion: An epic and universal conversation in which everyone is talking over each other, but no one is listening. Where participants connect unrelated words, like in a crossword puzzle, or overlay disconnected words, like in a game of Scrabble, as a way to keep or increase their score, until everybody runs out of things to say.
UV – Unlikely Visitor: The resentment of being jammed into one body that occupies one space at one time, which can only helplessly stare at an airport’s departures screen – where, rotating to the sound of falling change, are other places, other destinations, other lives that you will never get to live or see because, as the arrow suggests, ‘YOU ARE HERE’.
UX – Unrequited Experience: A phenomenon where someone with an active social life has no close friends – people that they can be themselves with, who can help cleanse the accumulated psychological toxins of malice, acrimony and spite that surface whenever the need to be seen collides with the need to be accepted.