Twitter Friends Meet facebook Friends..When Worlds Collide by Rick London

hat do you do when your social medias get crisscrossed?  When cyber-worlds collide?   But you say, “Rick…you are confusing me. How can social medias get crisscrossed???  Who is colliding with whom?

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Let’s face it. For now, there are only two social medias (that really matter a whole lot anymore); Twitter & facebook.  Sure, there are plenty of others that are important to one degree or another, but not to me, so there.

When I started on Twitter, it opened doors to the world.  Though I grew up in the town of Hattiesburg, Ms,  I left and decided to explore the world.  Sometimes it was tough; sometimes very tough, and on lucky days and/or months or years, it was educational, revealing, humbling, and growth-oriented.  I learned within a few years, I was not necessarily “Little Ricky” as I had been molded into (in my hometown).  In small hometowns, people often get pigeonholed into certain roles.  It is not in bad spirit that this is done. It is often in the lack of tools and resources there.

I enjoyed learning “who I was” and “what I was becoming”.  I could never have learned that in my hometown.  It was actually forbidden and often punished; whereas in several (usually much larger) cities in which I lived, it was encouraged and rewarded, (to grow and change).  Let me preface the rest of this blog that I am not a person that demands change for change sake and change is not always good.  In my case, it was good.   I will forever be indebted to the friends I have met along the way, who taught me new ways of thinking, flexibility, tolerance, patience and acceptance, and so many things either I wasn’t taught, or in some cases was, but “didn’t get”.

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Twitter is a reminder of the growth and changes as more often than not, most of my followers, and the people I follow are from all parts of the world.  Why would one not take advantage of the “magic of social networking” when it is so readily available? One minute I am talking to “a friend” from India and the next minute Peoria.  I love exchanging culture within 140 characters.  However, facebook offers something special that Twitter doesn’t have.

One is not limited to 140 characters for one thing.  Secondly, one gets to reconnect with one’s childhood friends, and even people regionally who “I knew who they were” or “they knew who I was” but we’d actually never met.  But it is special to be in touch with childhood friends on facebook, and see their changes, how they live, what they think, and still have an affection that sometimes I am surprised I still have, even when I don’t always agree; as a few pontificate on (things I consider more personal) matters such as politics, religion etc.  Those are my private matters and there is really no reason for anyone else to have to know.  To share them is rather silly; as, when I look back ten years ago; my political and spiritual values were nothing like they are today. I hope they are much more evolved now, but who am I to judge.  This leads me to believe that in ten years from now, I will have learned enough new things that I will not necessarily even resemble (spiritually and politically) what I am today.  I am still a “work in progress”.

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A lot of people, such as me, use both social networks for different reasons.  I follow many of them on both networks and vice versa.  I enjoy introducing my new friends to my childhood friends when at all possible.

This is where “worlds collide”.   When I mention this collision, I mean, many of them are vocal; a few of them way-too-old-to-be political activists but still are at my age.  I mean let’s face it.  Do they not see that they have changed?  We all have.  But many still “judge” the person at the other pc or laptop by their political and/or religious views.  I sit back in amazement at it, and say often (Seriously)…”But for the grace of God, there go I”.

A few get into conflict and expect me to take sides. I won’t do that; and have even at times blocked those who insist.  It is unfair to draw others into one’s private conflicts. I will certainly defend a friend if I see an injustice done to him or her.  I refuse to let anyone be harassing or abusive to my wife; period, and though it may seem as if I am prejudiced, I have not seen her be abusive or hurtful to anyone.  The sternest she has been is “firm”.

I don’t care what your religious and/or political views are. I really don’t. I am happy you have them, but they are for YOU, not for me, and vice versa.  You will not see me demanding to you to share my point of view on either subject.  I so hope you will share that same respect.  Most do, a few don’t and whine a bit too much about it.  Until they resolve that issue, at times I am forced to block them.

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But I still often have to watch the old and the new, my childhood friends and my newer adult friends of whom I often introduce, either get along beautifully, or become “bitter enemies who never met”.  It’s like junior high school at times.

I heard someone once say, “facebook is where you go to connect with people you went to high school with.  Twitter is where to go to meet the people you wish you’d gone to high school with.  Though I don’t at all agree with that philosophy, I understand the meaning behind the expression.   I have learned that there are good and bad people everywhere.  Smart and not-so-smart people everywhere.  Loving and hateful people everywhere.   Though I, at times very much enjoy reminiscing about “old times”, I refuse to “live there”.  I didn’t go through all my trials and tribulations to be stuck in “the times of old”.  I generally am much more interested in what my friends are doing now and what they have planned for the near and far future, than what they did in 9th grade. Not always, as I like to “do cyber-time travel every now and again”; just not always.  Facebook is only a tool created by humans to reconnect and socialize; not a way to make time stand still.  It may give that illusion, but it just ain’t so Joe and please don’t kill the messenger. I believe it is healthy to “go back in time” once in awhile and “remember when….”.  And it is up to each user to set their own boundaries over how often they want to do that. My boundaries are “every now and then”.  You are much more likely to see from my posts what I am doing now, not what I was doing “then”.

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I am not so sure I could have learned that important social norm without having been exposed to it in social media; and, having met many of the people from different cities in which I lived and worked.

I find that social networking helps my business and creative output.  It has its plusses and minuses. I met my wonderful wife on Twitter while working on a campaign.  We love each other and share similar points of view in many areas.  By the same token, we both are keenly aware we are “works in progress” and are changing.  And that’s okay. In fact its encouraged and we support each other in those changes.


I am really just a glorified mountain man.  Out of boredom, I created Londons Times Cartoons which have been Google & MSN’s #1 ranked offbeat webcomics since 2005.   Then (out of more boredom) I created online stores that sell funny greeting cards, tees, and other merchandise, now with over 1/4 million funny gifts.  Since that time I’ve branched out and started designing shoes.  One of my shops is called Shoes That Amuse, the world’s only famous love quotes shoes. I also created ShoeShies which sells Sushi Shoes & Gifts.



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