Cyber Promises

Yesterday, I shared an internet frustration on my Facebook page. I was surprised–and gratified, in an unfortunate sort of way–with the responses.

Some background: A couple of years ago, someone persuaded me to join LinkedIn. After a month or two of “membership,” I decided that–whatever its merits–the site was not for me. So  I tried to leave–to “recuse” myself, as we lawyer types would say.

No way.

I tried everything. (Okay, every mechanism an old woman with limited internet skills could think of.) Nothing worked. I was a “forever” captive of the site.

Eventually, I gave up. I left my “membership” with LinkedIn, and simply ignored the occasional invitation to connect. But it gnawed at me. I felt impolite–rude–when I ignored an invitation. I wanted to reach out the the person issuing the invitation and explain that I was not declining to be friends or even “connections,” I was simply not participating in this cyberspace exercise.

The other day, when I received three invitations from Linked In, I realized that something needed to be done. So I posted a “just in case you are one of those I’ve ignored” all-purpose apology. And the floodgates opened.

I heard from a large number of people who shared my frustration. A couple of them also shared my guilt, and the impulse to explain “nothing personal” to those they ignored. I’m gratified to learn that I am not the only person in this predicament, but frustrated with yet another situation in which a tool intended to make life simpler/easier instead makes it more complicated.

The internet is a wonderful advance. I can’t remember life without google, and I wouldn’t want to go back.

But they don’t call glitches “bugs” for nothing. They sure bug me.