I’m perusing my Reader at the moment and came across a great post by Chris Brogan: The Biggest Secret of Social Media. His big secret?

If you don’t like people very much, it won’t work very well.

In the post Chris recounts how in a recent interview the first question asked was “how one might automate all their social media usage and save time.” Insert collective UGH! As Chris points out, there’s nothing wrong with using the tools at hand to assist you

Using tools to better perform your tasks isn’t wrong. Rather, the goal is that you use these tools in service of better serving your buyers. Listening tools are awesome. Scheduling tweets isn’t evil, provided you’re mixing it in with organic tweets.

However, if your goal is to step back and automate the entire process so you don’t have to participate, then social media is not for you. I often say that the goal of social media is to be social, but Chris summed it up best towards the end of his post (emphasis added):

Most folks who read [chrisbrogan.com] already know that being human is the goal. That’s the thing. The people who don’t care about people are reading blogs with posts that say “Dominate Your List!” So, it’s not that I told you something you don’t know. Instead, this is kind of a “resist the pull to the dark side” post. Remember why you were drawn to social media. And look for ways to expand that secret power of yours into something that shows value to the others, so that they see your perspective on this.

I couldn’t agree more, and I couldn’t say it better.