For some reason, addiction has been on my mind lately. *Scratches head* Now why is that…oh right, because I’ve been watching Breaking Bad and Dexter in my free time. That could be it. Anywho, so I’ve been watching the world of social media (as a distant observer, of course) and I’ve noticed a few behaviors that are just too bizarre not to comment on. I do have to warn you that while it may seem like I know about some of these behaviors, that’s just a coincidence, ok? I’m not guilty of any of these. And neither are you. Now that we’ve got that settled, you know you’re addicted to social media if…

You use the phrase social media. Nobody knows this phrase unless they are addicts. It’s jargon, dude. Total jargon. There’s a reason The Social Network wasn’t called The Social Media.

You sleep with your smart phone on and beside you. Many people I know turn their phones off at night. They keep them in other parts of their abodes. They are not social media addicts. After all, how can you wake up at 2 AM to check Twitter if your phone is clear over in the kitchen? It’s much tougher that way. So I’ve heard.

You feel oddly compelled to share photos of what you are eating. A lot of people who are, let’s say, Social Media prohibitionists dismiss Social Media addicts by saying all they do is talk about what they ate for dinner. This is in fact not true. The number of pictures I see every day of what people are eating is astounding, and it’s everywhere – Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter…why do we, I meant, addicts, do that? Did you take pictures of your meals before Al Gore discovered the internet?

You get flummoxed when someone says something like “The Tweeter” or “That twit thing.” Like any addict, Social Media addicts are very protective of their drug of choice. It’s not the Twitter. Just Twitter. Thank you very much. Or so an addict might say, I’ve heard.

You feel “viral” is a great thing. Aliens are going to be so confused when they study Social Media addicts. You wanted to go viral? That’s just gross. Narsty, even. Yuck.

You talk on Social Media platforms about how much you hate Social Media. This is the ultimate addict behavior, right? “Oh, I hate that drug, but I need it, man.” This is how the Social Media addict talks about Twitter and Facebook and Google Plus and Quora and…what’s that new one again? No no, the one from 5 minutes ago.

You are pretty sure your life would lose all meaning if you stopped using Social Media. You feel like maybe you lived before you had a blog, but you can’t be sure. It must not have been much of a life because you can barely remember it. What did you do with all of that time? How did you make it through a meal without tweeting? And taking pictures of your food?

You announce you are taking a Social Media hiatus, then sneak in and thank the people who say they’ll miss you. I’ve never seen this happen. I’ve only heard rumors.

You start using Twitter hashtags in your regular communications. You know you’ve done, I meant, seen people do this, right? #Justsayin

The Google Plus app for iPhone really. ticks. you. off. If you are addicted to Social Media, the fact that you can’t tag people using the G+ iPhone app may really frustrate you. You might say things like, “What is the point of having an app if you don’t get the full functionality?” Uh, I read about this on a website once. That’s how I know people say things like that.

Big news is  just a chance to raise your Klout score. If you’re addicted to Social Media, you may monitor the news solely so you can be the one who breaks it to your network. You are the anchorman (or woman) of your Twitter or Facebook community. And boy do you get retweeted when you share big news.

You get giddy because you have tweeted with most of the authors in the Barnes & Noble business section. This may or may not cause your family and friends to disassociate with you. Addictive behavior, let’s face it, can be humiliating! So I’ve heard…

I’m sure I missed a few signs. Maybe you could add your field observations here. Together, we can help identify Social Media addicts and get them on the road to recovery. For now, I’m off to go to my favorite restaurant. They make great food that just photographs so well with my  iPhone…

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