This week I got my social networking groove on and posted this:
It came about for a few reasons….
Late last year I was at a kids’ sporting function with a friend. I turned around at one point to see someone behind me and – without thinking – blurted, “Oh hello, I follow you on Instagram!”
The lovely person in question smiled politely but looked a little worried nonetheless. I attempted to reassure her that I wasn’t a weird stalker but just recognised her from her online pictures. So no… not weird at all. 😉
Fast forward a few months and I was commenting on someone’s Instagram picture… and discovered we were both off to a morning tea with a visiting author the next day. We decided it would be lovely to finally meet but as my friend and I kept an eye out at the event, I realised I’d really only seen a postage-stamp sized picture of the person and their face wasn’t fully visible.
And last weekend friends and I were out having drinks when I saw someone else I recognised from Instagram… and given that all three of us posted pictures of our drinks (yes, we’re walking clichés!) I knew that person would see our pics and know we were there.
“I’ve been thinking we should have an Instagrammer or social media users-meet up,” I said when she came over.
We discussed the fact that sometimes feel as if we know these people – where they eat, what they do and so forth – although we may not have met in real life (IRL).
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not looking for a bunch of new besties, but it’d be nice to recognise a few familiar faces when I’m out and about… not to mention knowing whose pictures I’m seeing or commenting on, online.
So… I posted the invitation on Instagram.
Sadly I wasn’t overwhelmed with offers to organise a gathering, but someone messaged me and offered to talk to a venue suggested as a potential meeting place. So I randomly suggested a time and date and voilà ! We have our first meet-up all organised. Kinda.
I’ve tried to reassure potential attendees that this is very informal. It’s merely the opportunity for people to catch up and discover each other. I AM going to take along sticky labels so people can add their names and social media ‘handles’ so they’re identifiable. I learned that lesson the hard way after going to something when I had my first Twitter account with the handle of @rockafellaskank (long story, don’t ask!).
So even though I’m @debbish on most social media platforms, I’m actually Deborah. In case you were wondering.
The aim of the gathering is just to meet like-minded people, rather than promote businesses and the like. It’s purely social. We’ll set up a spot for kids and – though I’ve not been there – I hear The Front Room has some fabulous healthy food, which will be available for purchase on the day.
If you’re shy, never fear… I’m an introvert but rabid networker so will come and say hello if you’re hanging back. And I’m pretty sure the group will be a friendly and welcoming bunch.
Feel free to just drop in at some point during the afternoon. RSVPs aren’t necessary though we may be in trouble if hundreds of people turn up!
WHEN: 1 – 3pm SATURDAY 25th MARCH 2017
WHERE: THE FRONT ROOM, 399 ESPLANADE, TORQUAY (HERVEY BAY)