11.05.2010

Muting Virtual Life...

Recently I "lost" a conversation in my gmail as I was actively responding back and forth with someone.  I thought it was the weirdest thing but it appears that I triggered GMAIL's muting function which seems like it could become very helpful for certain conversations.  If you find yourself in an email with a lot of people in it that turns into a "Reply-All" forum and the emails are flooding your inbox without you having an interest in whats being said or joining in on the conversation, mute it.  Come back to it later if you want.  But at least you won't get anymore notifications for it.  I don't have much use for it right now, but knowing that its an option might make me use it in some situations.

Then I started to think about some of the other social networks that I use that give you the option to mute conversations or people.  Facebook, if you add a friend from High School or College that you really don't care about what they have to say day to day, Mute them, they no longer show up on your timeline.  Sweet! I have 600+ friends, best believe a good number of them are muted.  Why not just delete them right? Nah...some of them I'm cool with, but I'm not really concerned with their 35 status updates a day.  At that rate they are blocking out the people I'm actually closer to that may only update once a day or once a week.

Google Buzz also has a mute feature, its practically the same as the GMail feature.  With Buzz it comes in handy if you decide to reply to something, that you didn't expect would start a conversation for a week. Mute! No more emails or notifications with senseless responses.  Facebook should do that too, for when people reply to statuses or to pictures and they really don't care what other people are replying to it.

Finally my favorite Twitter application (one of the things I miss from my Blackberry days), Ubertwitter came out with a mute function.  This one is for the people on your timeline that have 50 updates an hour and it really doesn't interest or entertain you.  Instead of hurting their feelings and deleting them as a friend, just click mute. The other nice feature is that you can choose how long you want to mute someone for.  I guess that comes in handy if you don't want to hear people tweet every 2 minutes when Real House Wives of Atlanta, Greys Anatomy, True Blood, or whatever Award Show is on.  Just mute them for an hour or two and you can still read your timeline with out the bombardment. (you should definitely click that link, lol)

While social networks have seemingly taken over, people are starting to regret being SO connected to everyone all the time.  As time goes on Mute will become a favorite of a lot of people and I'm sure Facebook, Twitter, and whatever else is popular will continue to add filter functions to make using their site more comfy to the user that doesn't want to know everything or show everything...