Your bulletins suck

Quit annoying your friends to the point they ignore every bulletin with your avatar next to it.  Before you know it, they'll delete you entirely.  No one finds you interesting enough to wade through a stream of stream of consciousness bullshit posts.

Hmmmmm... Maybe you ought to start thinking about ways to keep your bulletins from sucking.  Some suggestions?  Try these:

Group it.  Have several related items?  Put them in one bulletin (e.g., "Things going on this weekend," or "Sarah Palin is a moron") rather than several separate ones.  Why are you making us click through a bunch of pages?  Do you get a commission from MySpace for all the ads you serve up to your friends?  Yeah, I see where the loyalty lies.

Have informative titles.  If you post things on a theme, then the title ought to included a clue to that.  For example, if I'm posting a link to yet another gallery of urban explorations, then I include the word "exploring" or some derivative of it in the subject line so those who don't care can skip it.  If it's yet another clip from a Japanese game show, then I'll announce it as "evidence the Japanese are happily insane," same as I do every week.

English.  Do you speak it?  If I can't read it, I won't bother.  This goes for l33t kids and whatever other dialect you're encoding your secret message in.  Look, if I have to hit more than once per paragraph, I'm too old to care what you have to say.  Maybe that's my problem, but if you'd type in the Official Language of Common Sense, maybe we'd give a shit.

Size matters.  Only use enough words to say what you need to.  Don't beat a message to death drumming your fingers across the keyboard just for your own need for a catharsis.

Mix it up.  Don't post the same shit all the time.  You sound like a scratched record.  I mean, I like posting videos of musical performances of varying kinds, but I reserve those for one day of the week (i.e., Monday's Musical Madness) and then post comedy or science/technology or political somethings else I found to be worth sharing on other occasions.

Mixed media.  On a similar note, don't stick to one modality.  I mean, if you absolutely can't get enough of YouTube, great, but how about some variety for the rest of us?  Those on my friend list, you notice I always post a mix of bulletins: a video, something I wrote or an essay or other text I found interesting or funny, and a link to another site (even if it's my own, usually to a photo gallery in those cases).

Just keep it to yourself.  Bulletins allow you to disseminate knowledge and understanding.  They aren't a place for you to post your latest thought bubble like, "My feet hurt and I have gum in my hair.  I'm having a bad day."  Really?  All you accomplished was to annoy me, and the sympathy truck is now headed in the opposite direction.  Go fuck yourself.

Think globally.  Unless you're Republican (read: a sheltered xenophobe with your profile clamped down to private), many of the friends on your list probably do not live in the same town or even the same state as you.  If you're posting things of local interest, make that clear either in the subject line (preferably) or at the very least in the first line of the bulletin.  If you're posting something that's an inside joke for a subset of your friends, just email them instead because it's all just ticks and pops to the rest of us.

Don't wear out your welcome.  Posting twenty things an hour over the course of the entire day tells me I ought to get a job like you have.  One where I'll have the time to waste everyone else's.  Seriously, if you give me an information glut, I'm going to be a lot more selective in what I even bother opening (i.e., nothing that doesn't imply it's porn).  Most bulletins I've posted in a day?  Probably five.  Three is typical because you've got other shit to do.  And on weekends it's zero because both of us ought to be out doing something fun instead.


No more surveys.  Find another way to masturbate that people will at least want to have a look at.

(It's also posted in my MySpace blog.  If this sounds like I'm talking about you, I dare you to comment.)

BTW, feel free to repost.  I know this is an open letter to some folks on your list as well.

p.s. Not everyone's bulletins suck.
I should point out that not everyone's bulletins suck.  Not that I've gotten any flack about the above from anyone who thought I was targeting them (Maybe those who post excessively don't read others' bulletins?  Irony!), but rather I should mention that some of my friends consistently post bulletins that I always enjoy checking out.

Conversely, I also have lots of friends who have never posted a bulletin.  Ever.  And I don't understand that either.  You couldn't say, "Hey, I'm getting tickets to [concert/cultural event/whatever].  Let me know if you want to come"?  Is your life so uninteresting that you have no stories to share?  Have you not seen anything worthwhile on the web you could forward to your friends?  Squandered opportunities just like the blog you never post to either.

So this week's top friends are examples of good bulletin posters.  Always informative and/or entertaining, used sparingly, with a distinctive style in most cases, and offering something for everyone.

Copyright 2008 Alexplorer.
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