From FOMO to JOMO — there’s a new acronym in town.
It was only a matter of time.
With the relentless onslaught of information coming our way from every screen, surface, and speaker…
It’s time for a new acronym to capture the collective mood of a certain tribe.
Namely, the tribe that was formed and exists primarily in and around the periphery of Social Media Land.
From FOMO to JOMO — A Brief History
For readers who aren’t familiar with the acronym, FOMO stands for “Fear of Missing Out.” It is most often affiliated with a new kind of person whose behavior has been permanently altered by the gushing river of alerts, pings, likes, texts, and tweets that rush through his world every day.
Think Content Marketers, Social Media Managers…and the millions of everyday folks who bought a ticket to the biggest game in town when they signed their 2-year agreement with their cell phone carrier.
Petrified of missing some new piece of (meaningless) information, this individual is constantly logged in to the online “conversartion” and in turn, tuned out to what’s going on right there live and in person in the offline world he barely recognizes anymore. Characteristics of such a person include multiple screens open at once and sleeping with his Smartphone.
These days, there are individuals whose entire careers are characterized by FOMO, which is a frightening thought in itself. And with the cultural move toward real-time marketing that demands brands be on alert 24/7 to not only respond but be the first to post whatever event is being deemed CANNOT MISS, it’s only going to get worse before it gets better.
JOMO to the Rescue
Enter JOMO, the newest acronym on the block. JOMO stands for “Joy of Missing Out” and interestingly enough, one of its biggest proponents is none other than reigning social media queen, Mari Smith. Check out this screenshot of a recent Twitter search for #JOMO, spurred on by an email from Mari that she sent to her list –>
Clearly, Mari struck a chord with fans about the incessant noise we have allowed into our lives via iPhones and iPads; Androids and laptops that transform into tablets and back again, all to a delightfully hip and upbeat soundtrack.
I did not see the email, but a friend shared the highlights with me, prompting me to reflect on my own love/hate relationship with social media and the Internet in general. While I have long been in the JOMO camp, I must confess to having felt pangs of FOMO now and again, keeping my iPhone in my pocket while I eat dinner with my family or next to me during a book group gathering.
I am also guilty of tweeting during live sporting events, and have actually grown fond of doing that.
I’ve been seduced like the rest of the planet.
Moving Away from FOMO to JOMO
Over the next one to two years (perhaps sooner), I predict a significant rise in the number of JOMO followers, believers, or whatever you want to call the next tribe of hashtagged peeps who rally around a collective concept and comment on it until its original form is no longer recognizable. It was bound to happen, and I am glad.
There’s someone in your life right now who would love a hug from you, and then some live and in-the-moment attention. There’s also a beautiful sunset somewhere in the world tonight. And in order to get the most out of the experiences, they don’t need to be posted on Facebook or published to the Twitter stream.
Who else is with me?