To be or not to be … Tagged

by on February 12, 2010

As most of you know, this Goddess is deliciously social in the Virtual Cocktail Party that is FaceBook. I am also a stickler for Good Manners, common courtesy and a sucker for all things Shakesperean.

With this in mind, I decided to re-post a note I published and add insights gleaned from the animated conversation that ensued.

(The original note is in plain script with the comments in italics)

With sincere apologies to immortal Bard …

The Goddess has been pondering the question of Tagging on FB notes and videos.

Had Hamlet been not only the Prince of Procrastinators but also a Star of Social Media, methinks he may have reworked his famous soliloquy thus ~

“To be or not to be (tagged) – that is the question:”

It’s common practice of almost all newbie social marketers and most of the wannabe crowd, to try to ride the waves of success on the coattails of the Big Dogs –
in other words, to tag the Already Successful in a post or video so as to take advantage of the visibility that their pages provide….

EVEN IF that Big Dog is neither their sponsor nor even mentioned in Said post.

I have to admit I’ve done this too. It’s not only because of a deep desire to get my material in front of as many eyeballs as possible (and after all, isn’t that the whole point of social media?), but also to get that same material in front of the Big Dogs themselves.

To get feedback and – let’s be honest here – to get Noticed!

But looking at it from the Big Dog’s point of view, I got to wondering – how Fair is this really?

Back to Shakespeare …
“Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,…”

“Outrageous fortune” – how utterly delicious is that phrase?
The Big Dogs have ‘Outrageous fortune’. Oh how the rest of us yearn for it.

But do we have the right to commandeer a Big Dog’s hard-earned tribe just because it’s so easy to do so on sites like FB and Twitter?

The first few comments (thank you fellow Goddesses Alethea, Kimberly, Michelle and JoAnn) were in favor of tagging – but within certain parameters: “if your message is to add value with a service mentality, is in line with the ideals and views of the leader in question, and isn’t self promotional or spammy tagging is a great way to get good content to a wider audience.” ~ Jay van Nostrand

Imagine if you will that we’re all at a conference and a Big Dog like say John Fogg, or Richard Bliss Brooke is speaking. Imagine I marched up on stage, unannounced, took the mike and began my own presentation, in effect stealing the Big Dog’s audience and their platform.

Somehow, I don’t think I’d be welcomed – no matter how great my content or attractive my Goddess-ness might be! LOL

So this is where the conversation really heated up! Richard Bliss Brooke (I had tagged him in the note) posted a comment that said that he believed tagging “is presumptuous and trespassing of sorts.” He went on to say: “I don’t see Face Book as a place for people that do not have a following to gain a following or for people that have not accomplished much to all of a sudden be heard.”

But this happens in social media all the time!

So I ask you, why should a Big Dog have to CHOOSE between being ‘nobler’ and ‘to suffer
the slings and arrows’ of random posts and irrelevant tags;

or ….

(back to Shakespeare again – last time, promise)

” to take arms against a sea of troubles
And, by opposing, end them.”

In other words, complain about said excessive tagging, remove the perpetrators, and try to keep their wall or pages a little more selective and a whole lot less cluttered,

or they can stay quiet and watch their own content get swamped by everybody else’ stuff.

I don’t think that’s fair, do you?

At this point the debate suddenly took a more salacious turn. (Before you go running to – it means Sexy!)

Natalie Lamb and John Fogg both weighed in with the opinion that tagging was sort of like sex – you need to introduce yourself and ask permission first, and any false advertising about the “efficiency of product or program” would be very quickly brought to light!

But at the same time – the name of the game in social media marketing is to get in front of as many people as possible, and tagging is undoubtedly a very successful strategy.

A strategy proven by this post! I tagged every one of the Big Dogs I have befriended on FB, whether I was in close contact with them or not. My post would have been unseen, and the ensuing debate unrealized without it – a fact graciously acknowledged by Sir Richard.

So, to tag or not to tag.

Here the Goddess is still somewhat torn. And I posted this conclusion: “Tag if the person is mentioned in the post, or if you are in direct contact with them. But if you have Any doubt whatsoever about how the tagging will be received – just ASK first.”

And at the end of the day, dear Readers, the Goddess concluded that once again, it all comes down to the gentle Art of Manners – treating others as you would wish to be treated – and the idea that when you offer things of Value, they will invariably be delightedly received.

Bliss and blessings to you all.

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