Are we slaves to the rhythm of social media?

I’ve been thinking alot lately how all of us are starting to meld social media into the daily fabric of our lives. For some of us, our daily routine consists of checking in or logging on to various social nets to see if we have anyone who has posted, commented, uploaded, friended or mailed anything directly to us. 

We check our email, and that’s a given. We use our cell phone to surf the net and check mail and that’s a given too. But then in short succession we could log onto Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Friendfeed, WordPress, Ning, Bebo, Orkut, Hi5, Twitter, Plurk, Typepad, Google Reader, Feedburner, and dozens of others to check for new friends, uploads, downloads, new pics, new scoop, new mail, new comments and new widgets.  We then could log onto and read more than our share of random or relevant blogs,  and we even might comment on a couple as well.

Not only might we do this once, but we might do this more than a few times a day depending on the nature of our work. And even more when we get home at night. Which leads to a few questions:

  • Are we slaves to social media?
  • Does social media own us?
  • Are our lives more or less complicated by using social media?
  • Do we get more done thanks to social media?
  • Are we more or less social?

What do you think? What is acceptable? Frankly I try to limit my time into blocks built around the work day and even at home. But I can see where one could spend endless amounts of time building and maintaining social media personas from here to BFE and back. The question is. What is your ultimate plan or goal with social media? As a layperson and as a professional, do you have an end game result in mind? Do you have a plan?