There’s Slow Food, But What About Slow Social Media?



Do you ever feel like social media is making us all stupider? I’ve been feeling that way a lot lately. People making things up, fake science, and people quoting from junk articles they’ve seen on Facebook. Can it get any stupider? Well, yes. Yes, it can! Let’s not travel down that rabbit hole just yet, though. Let’s talk about reversing the tide a bit. Let’s talk about slow social media. By the way, I enjoyed this article about Slow Social. You might, too.

Stop the ten-second videos

One reason I don’t log into certain video-sharing apps is because it’s easy to spend 15 hours looking at 10-second videos. You know what I’m talking about, right? Besides making me stupider, there’s a certain meanness to many of the videos. As if seeing someone falling down should be funny. Or hurting an animal should be entertainment. Or what about the “pranks” where someone pretends to spend $10,000 on a buttlift, and then the poor guy’s reaction. Really? How about if we just skip it?!

Social media whiplash

Watching non-stop videos of ridiculous subjects can give us all a kind of whiplash. You might not even remember what you just watched if you watch too much. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. Before you even open that app, know why you’re there and what you’re going to do. If you want to engage for ten minutes, do that. Set your timer, then get out! It’s kind of like going to the grocery store when you’re hungry. You end up mindlessly buying (or watching) things you don’t want. And you might not even remember why you bought something when you get home. If this rings a bell for you, you might like: Organizing Your Social Media So You Can Have a Better Life.

Fear of missing out (FOMO)

Do people really fear missing something on social media? Do you? How do we get over this idea, as a culture? If you take a break from being online, you’ll see that you’ll hardly miss anything at all. Try it! Did the world end? No, it did not! The only thing that will change, probably, is your level of relaxation. So take the yoga class. Go for a walk. Or eat the ice cream. Avoid Social Media Decision Fatigue Three Quick and Easy Ways.

Can we use the slow-food movement as a model?

With the pandemic, many people began to spend more time at home, cooking more. Slow food was already gaining ground, but it became even more important as we had more time to spend baking banana bread. I like to think that we could all use a little unscheduled, boring time, if you will. Times when nothing happens. Like rest notes in music, for instance. The slow-food movement began as a protest against fast food. Could we start a protest against fast social media? And even though I’m a social media manager, how about if we have a day when we stay off social media? Who’s with me on this?


  1. Miles Clyne says

    Everything is a choice as is our participation in social media. Most of us can get sucked into the mind-numbing waste of time activities. All the streaming services like Netflix are arguably are as bad or worse as we have to pay for them. If we don’t want to address how we spend our time we will always find a way to waste it.

    • Hello Miles,
      So true about streaming services! Those can be just as mindless (when I see that “are you still watching?” prompt, it makes me wonder how long it’s been). On social media, things seem to be getting faster and faster. The videos are shorter and maybe our attention spans are, too. Is it a chicken-and-egg thing? Maybe.
      Thank you for the comment!

  2. First, have you been looking over my shoulder? lol Lately I’ve spent a lot more time on Instagram than usual. I’ve been looking for a particular video, but you can’t put in keywords on Insta and find what you’re looking for. I’ll admit that I stop often to watch dog and baby videos, and some of the dancing sequences have been outstanding. But I’m just killing time; one night I realized I’d been on for 90 minutes; ouch! I don’t come close to spending that kind of time on any other platform; not that any of them numbs my mind as much.

    As for the slow food concept… nope, never got into that. Then again, my life’s been different than that of most people for the last 4 years… or 60+ years, since my goal’s usually been to spend as little time in the kitchen as I possibly can 99% of the time. I’ll have to think more about that one.

    • Hi Mitch, Hahaha! Nope! Not looking over your shoulder at all. It’s something that happens to me, too. Cute dogs, kittens, babies, and down the rabbit hole I go! Yes, so hard to find things on Instagram. Not everyone likes to cook, but having something to compare seemed like a good idea at the time. Hence slow food.

      And I’m really tired of the 10-second videos. Sometimes 10 seconds is the right amount of time to spend on something, but often people take concepts that are too large and squash them into 10 seconds!

      Thanks for stopping by! See you on YouTube (or Twitter, probably),

  3. Great post and I’m with you, Carol. I actively scroll past videos on every platform (except news stories that I want to consume) and know it’s possible to get sucked into a vortex.

    Great idea to slow down.

    FOMO should be designated a medical (psychological) condition! Like many addictions, I think it takes commitment and going cold turkey to get out of the habit. Once that happens, you can breathe again.

    • Thank you, Terri! I think we all need to get back to “ground zero” every once in a while and take a complete break from social media. Even us social media managers need breaks sometimes.

      I agree with you about FOMO. Maybe the next DSM will include FOMO, along with ways to combat it. It is an addiction and one that requires special consideration and care.

      Thanks for commenting!

  4. I’m usually the person that just checks and puts down her phone after 2 minutes. Unless I’m on the train and scroll for a while as I get to my destiny. And I mostly post special events. All that changed when I realized someone I know likes me. You could find me checking my FB and Insta all day long, checking if I have a message or like. I’ve been trying to take a break for months now, but I always go back after a day or less

    • Hi Carmen, I hope the person you like likes you back! Yes, romance or the possibility of romance can quickly change your social media habits. Best luck to you with your romantic life!

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