“But, will it play in Peoria?” is an old figure of speech from Vaudeville. Apparently, Peorians were not easily amused, entertained, or impressed. And so, the phrase came to be used to ask whether a particular product, person, event, etc. would appeal to mainstream America, or to an audience spanning a broad demographic. I have come to think of Facebook that way. Nowadays, when I get an Aha! thought or something I think is interesting, entertaining, or informative, my first thought is, “But, will it play on Facebook?”
I usually try to find an attention-grabbing picture that fits my thought. I then ponder some more: Who is my audience (my Facebook “friends”)? Do they all know me well enough to discern when I’m serious, vs. a tongue-in-cheek (read: “sarcastic”) observation… If I think there just might be any real appreciation of my mostly irrelevant, often irreverent observation, I go for it.
Typically, the proof is in the posting. If there’s not at least one “Like” in the first hour, chances are I guessed wrong. And sometimes, as soon as I actually see it in writing, it no longer seems as pithy and amusing as it did in my head. I hate when that happens. But, that’s the beauty of the DELETE button, which I hit – often, within minutes of the posting.
Now I am beginning to wonder how Facebook plays in Peoria….
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