Thanks for all the great feedback on last week’s email (Whatever Changes You Plan to Make in 2022, Start Them Today) and my bonus long-read about the negative content cycle we’re in at the moment (Tracking the signals of cruel-posting and what it could mean for 2022). It’s always so helpful to hear from you as we seek out signals worth noting and figure out what to do with them together. Thank you.
My kids have fall break this week, so we’re in Iowa to visit family and friends – many for the first time since before the pandemic. We also took the opportunity to walk our kids around a college campus and have some big, deep conversations about education, vocation, and how to find your people.
It’s never too early to start equipping your kids, and I’m incredibly grateful for my college experience. Even if it wasn’t exactly linear. But that’s what it’s all about, right? Learning and failure and growth and experience. At least that’s what I say when I make that school loan payment each month.
Okay, let’s get into the social signals I’m tracking this week…
Bones or No Bones Day?
Have you ever been so tired it is as if you don’t even have bones in your body to get up and get going? Well there’s a social trend for that. Every morning the owner of a pug named Noodle lifts the sleepy pup up from his comfy bed and then records the result: “If the pug flops back down, it’s a “no-bones” day — a time to lay low, avoid risks and cancel plans without regret. If he remains standing, it’s a “bones” day, which is a sign to get out there and indulge.” And then the internet acts accordingly, of course. Here’s an example of a Bones Day. And here’s an example of a No Bones Day.
What’s Up With Those Letterboards on Instagram?
If you’ve spent time on Instagram in the last four years you have seen letterboards used as props by “momfluencers” to communicate milestones, share pithy quotes, puns, and more. They’re now falling out of favor, and Kathryn Jezer-Morton wrote a deep dive into the history, adoption, and future of letterboards.
Key quote: “During the pandemic, the same thing happened with letterboards that happens to almost anything that gets popular in a free marketplace: They were exploited for as much value as possible by as many people as could profit, until everyone was nauseated by the very thought of them. Too many people were using them, and they became, as Maya Vordertrasse put it, “a caricature.”… Letterboards became too obviously about what they were always already about: following a trend to boost engagement.”
What If You Only Got 100 Social Posts EVER?
Minus is a new social network allows you 100 posts—for life. So you really have to think about what you post and what you say. You can read more about the theory behind it here. And sign up for a Minus account here. Feel free to post a thank you to me for the referral, if you can afford a post.
Is it Human Nature to Romanticize the Past?
Back in 1939, Gallup issued a poll asking “Do you think Americans were happier and more contented at that time (during the horse and buggy days) than they are now?” and 63% of respondents said that yes, life was better back in those days.
- When you have “tall Zoom energy” and show up to the office for the first time;
- Best States for Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse;
- Marketing to Generation Alpha;
- The Amazing Things You’ll Do in the Metaverse and What It Will Take to Get There;
- 5 Things High-Performing Teams Do Differently.
The Good Tweets:
- Facebook is planning to rebrand the company with a new name.
- Instagram will let users co-author posts and share likes.
- Pinterest announced a TikTok-like ‘Watch’ feed for Pin content, and ‘Takes’ response option for Idea Pins.
- Reddit shared a new report called “The Rebalancing Act” (PDF) about pandemic trends.
- Among Us is coming to PlayStation and Xbox consoles on December 14.
- Former President Donald Trump is launching a new social network called Truth Social.
- Fisher-Price made a working Chatter phone for adults that works with Bluetooth.
- Amazon is not primarily known as a logistics company, but in 2020 the company shipped more parcels than FedEx.
- Snap launched Arcadia, a studio to create augmented reality ads for on the platform and beyond.
- Epic says it’s ‘open’ to blockchain games after Steam bans them.
- Facebook is testing ways to cross-post your Facebook posts to Instagram.
- Google launched a ‘Google for Creators’ platform.
- Podcast of the Week: The TikTok Salmon Bowl Can’t Save Us.
- Twitterer of the Week: @basic_knowledg
- TikTokkers of the Week: @forgottenpopbops; @luyoudo
- TikTok of the Week: Every single mom on Halloween.
See you on the internet!