I’ve been holding on to a response to Greg Morris’s post about how some things are just too easy now. I have a pretty large set of ideas around how rapidly removing friction and transaction costs in an increasingly digital world has had a host of negative consequences. I don’t think these consequences largely outweigh the benefits, but I do think many of us are scrambling with uneasiness or unhappiness with our destination post-internet connectedness. It’s important that we think about how the things have played out and come up with new culture and structure to refine the world back toward a better compromise.

I just haven’t had the brain space to sit, write, edit, and really explain my thinking. It’s an easy conversation over a beer, but a hard one to put out in writing.

Sure enough, Greg comes back today with a post about embracing complexity. Of course, because this one goes meta about blogging and the internet, it feels way easier to respond to.

Now, let’s consider responding to a social media post. As previously mentioned, this task is overly simple, allowing users to quickly tap a button and share their thoughts with minimal effort. I believe adding complexity to this process, such as requiring a more thoughtful response posted on one’s blog, could balance the effort with the desire to engage. While it might not eliminate all frivolous responses, it could significantly reduce them.

He continues later:

This complexity reduces my posting frequency since I now require significant motivation to write and publish, leading to many potential posts remaining in Apple Notes.

I am confident that this is a complexity I do not want to embrace. If I make it hard to post to my own website, I don’t. That may not be so bad– the world is not worse off for my lack of posting. But what’s crumby is that I still often want to write or say something. I still often want to share a photo or a thought. And for me, if that complexity exists on my blog, eventually, I will decide to still post but somewhere else. And I think posting somewhere else is much, much worse most of the time.

So for me, posting somewhere I control and on my own site has to be easy. Ideas that want to be expressed that are simple are simply posted. Thoughtful responses are complex enough. Being thoughtful is not easy. Making the mechanics of sharing a thoughtful post complex doesn’t enforce being thoughtful, it ensures being thoughtful feels like a waste of time and effort. It’s one more thing I have to do after the hard work of writing. If I make blogging hard, I won’t blog, quality be damned.

I do think a whole host of things have been made easy to ill effect. I don’t think it’s great that work can contact me all of the time. I think it’s worse that this is a pervasive ability, so that customers/clients are always connected and this can impose a sense of needing to “keep up” with that pace as well. I think about systems and processes we build to do things a thousand times that I wish we’d just do once, with higher quality– the world is filled with this. Most of the things I view as problematic have been areas where we’ve managed to massively increase the pace of our world.

And yet, when it comes to socializing, and I do view blogging as a form of socializing, I can’t help but to think how much lonelier a friction-filled world would feel.