I'm back in Austin again for SXSW, but looking at my various social media accounts, you might not know it. And I got into a debate last night (and by "debate" I mean "fight") with someone who said I was doing SXSW all wrong.
This fellow contended that if you're not broadcasting everything you're seeing, hearing, doing, and learning at SXSW, you're underserving your network, as well as missing out on an opportunity to burnish your reputation as an expert in your field.
I respectfully disagreed (and by "respectfully" I mean "not respectfully"). My reasoning:
First, you see and hear a lot of obvious, shallow observations that frankly aren't worth being mentioned in the first place, much less retweeted. Here's an example of a series of tweets someone parroted from a SXSW session yesterday:
Tweet 1 - Metrics reduce arguments based on opinion.
Tweet 2 - Metrics give you answers about what works.
Tweet 3 - Metrics show you strengths as a designer.
Tweet 4 - Metrics allow you to test anything.
(For the record, I'm not making any of those up.)
Second, I think we're severely undervaluing thinking. That is, we're not giving ourselves time to process new ideas, create even more ideas from those, and think about how those ideas apply to clients or prospects or companies we want to launch. We don't take the time to think because we're too hellbent on merely repeating things said by others, because that's what we're "supposed" to do.
With only two blog readers and a couple dozen twitter followers, I'm clearly not under much pressure to please an audience. But even if I were, I'd still take the approach I'm taking.
Instead of putting everything I'm learning into tweets and status updates and blog posts, I'd rather put it into the work.