Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Trent Pulls Out Of Social Media

Full reasoning why is here if you're interested, but the short answer is that the whole idea was an experiment, and he's tired of dealing with the trolls. The paragraph that really struck me, though was this one:
I had thought a while ago about attempting to start a mainstream public forum that required real verification of it's participants for purposes of context. The idea was to have a place where you can actually discuss whatever and have some idea of who you're conversing with. For example, if we were discussing drumming techniques and you can see that someone participating in the discussion is a drum instructor vs. a 13 year old kid Googling answers, you'd have the proper context in which to have a potentially valid discussion. If we were discussing EDLC's heart condition and a real cardiologist speaks up, I'd value his opinion over, say FredFuckFaceWhateverHisLastFuckingNameIs's "opinion". Know what I mean? Anyway, we're in a world where the mainstream social networks want any and all people to boost user numbers for the big selloff and are not concerned with the quality of experience.
He's got a point, but I wonder how much of the problem is the functioning of social networks versus Trent's conception of how his interactions with fans should work. Twitter (especially Twitter) is a complete free for all with troll-spawning capabilities that make the worst forums look like sunshine and rainbow generators, because anyone can join and anyone can talk at anyone else, and censorship is non-existent. From the standpoint of an artist looking to break down walls between himself and his fans, it seems like a great opportunity, but I have to wonder if there would be a Trent Reznor twitter account in the first place if he focused on how problematic breaking down those walls could be.

Of course, if he worried about things like that, he probably wouldn't be so successful as an artist.

It did make me wonder if the results of the Nine Inch Nails social media experiment might herald the ultimate limitations of sites like Twitter. If people who are targets because of the brands they represent end up shying away from Twitter's complete lack of boundaries, it seems like we've reached ceiling the possibilities of social media's brave new world.


JB said...

I can't be the only person on this planet that just thinks this guy is an asshole that tries to hide beind other peoples issues.

Eric said...

No, you're not: he's had some very public fights with people on Twitter who no doubt agree with you now, if they didn't before. Trying to hide what, though?