What I Need From Social Media (While Waiting for the New Facebook)

This February 25, 2013 photo taken in Washington, DC, shows the splash page for the Internet social media giant Facebook. AFP
This February 25, 2013 photo taken in Washington, DC, shows the splash page for the Internet social media giant Facebook. AFP PHOTO / Karen BLEIER (Photo credit should read KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images)

How do you like your sharing? Public, private or with a dash of both? I'm on the computer or cell phone all day. It's OK. I'm a writer so it's in the job description. The new design Facebook is rolling out got me thinking about how effectively I manage my social networking and sharing. I'm not good with instruction manuals or privacy settings so I have gotten caught out with Facebook changes in the past. I followed the resistance to the last big new redesign and then watched it fade away as we all added our header photos and kept liking, linking and commenting. Mark Zuckerberg said that the new design will be "the best personalized newspaper in the world."

While I wait to check that out, I've been giving some thought to what I actually want and need from my hours on the laptop and with social media. Here are just a couple of things that I've come up with:

1. I want to share pictures and videos, but not necessarily with everyone all the time. Guess what? There's a good site for that. It's called Burst. The thing I like about Burst is that there's no guesswork when it comes to privacy. The site was designed so I can send photos and videos to the cloud and then decide exactly whom I'm sending them to. So that really cute photo of my 13-year-old daughter where she's wearing the cat on her head goes to her grandparents and my animal loving friends. But it won't go public and embarrass her.

2. I want a quick fix of entertainment sometimes. SlingJot is coming soon to the U.S. Twitter brought us the 140 character standard in communicating. SlingJot whittles that down even further to just one word. You can record your reaction to events, photos and news in a single descriptive. Your reaction gets posted to a word cloud, creating an instant poll with the reactions of others. SlingJot is lean in that you don't have any profiles, bios or past histories to contend with. This could get a little addicting so count this streamlined social network as entertainment, not work exactly.

3. Help me get organized and make it simple. Enter Clipix. With Clipix, you add an icon onto your toolbar. Then, whenever you're on a site you want to remember, find an article you know you'll need again or track a great sweater for your dad's birthday, you click the icon. The link and photo go to the clipboard you choose and voila, it's been saved either publicly or privately. The thing I like about this system is that it's visual. And they just added email to the list of clippable things. Organize your clipboards according to what you need. It's like an online filing cabinet with pictures.