Sunday, October 2, 2011

The flattery of social networking

Yesterday, as a backup, I uploaded a couple of powerpoints that I use infrequently to Slideshare. They're slides I use in presentations to students, and would be of little interest of relevance to anyone else. Imagine my astonishment then to receive this in my email this morning:
How exciting, thought I. Fame at last! Recognition from the international community of Slideshare! And, because I am vain, I went straight to the Slideshare site to see how many views my apparently wonderful presentation had had in the 14 or so hours since I had uploaded it. The result:
So what does this mean? It was rather flattering for a moment, but 0 views does rather burst the bubble! Is this a cunning ploy designed to encourage us all to upload more slideshows? Is there simply a lag between their view counter and their email system, and in fact, this trivial and visually unappealing presentation, last updated in January 2010 (unlike Facebook!) really is one of the most popular uploads of the day?

And just in case this isn't enough to make you cynical about Slideshare, I received a SECOND email:

Two uploads; two of the most popular presentations of the day. If only that actually meant something.