This collective desire to see and be seen is refracted and magnified by social media, which turns the banality of ordinary life into a kind of performance art. We don’t just bake Christmas cookies – we announce our intentions, document our attempts and display our results to the world. Or at least we’d like to. (It helps if the world is actually watching.)
Not to worry. The Food Network can help with that. Their new Facebook app “Holiday Central” is a festive seasonal offering that invites users to post a photo of their best holiday dish on the Food Network’s Facebook wall – all in hopes of getting selected to be featured in the app’s recipe gallery. Yes, you too can be a food expert and bequeath your holiday-themed culinary insights to the world! Just like Paula Dean! But go easy on the mascara, okay?
Giving people a chance to show off online is one of the keys to social media engagement.
On the other hand, maybe this app isn’t about exploiting the desire for social media celebrity at all. Maybe it’s simply that food is one of those things we’ve always just wanted to share. After all, food was social way before media was. And there’s something about it – the communal-ness of it, that makes us want to talk about it, celebrate it, and, yes, pass it along.
Combine that impulse with the attention getting power of social media and this is one online holiday promotion that might just be, um… the perfect recipe.