At the risk of offending someone, General Aviation is dying a sensational death in the displays of peoples smart devices, right now. If you fight social media, you fight the people who think they are doing everyone a favor.
Fact is, these incidents (airplanes being considered a risk) are the net result of two decades of organized crime in media and news reporting. The citizen pays a lot of taxes and demands to be protected from harm, in return. The associations know about this trend and can't or won't do anything against it for a very simple reason.
Informed citizens do not protest seaplanes and general aviation at every turn. With each issue that arises, associations get more ammunition into their hands to lure and recruit painfully ignorant people into paying them money for something they won't ever do, or wouldn't know how to do. Problems are the cure! Expecting something different is the same as asking a medicine doctor who has to finance his kids ivy league schooling to actually cure and heal his patients.
Ever seen sweet stuff at a dentists office? How are you going to pay your bills if you eradicate your own business or make it obsolete?!
People are constantly sensitized to the danger of small airplane flying, every single accident is just another nail in the coffin. Meanwhile, young people who spend 95% of their wake operating time on social media, snapchat, Instagram, pinterest and all the others, grow up with a sense of entitlement and having to feel unique in their way of self expression.
Go into any restaurant and look what dominates the action. Smartphones! We are constantly connected, in fact when there is no internet service, panic sets in.
Notes taken over the last two years:
DECREASED READING COMPREHENSION
VERY SHORT ATTENTION SPAN
INCREASE OF RAW LANGUAGE USE
POPULARITY RULES EVERYTHING
INCOHERENT WRITING IS NORMAL
POPULARITY IS MEASURED BY LIKES
POPULARITY = FUNDING!
The Aviation associations and companies have redeveloped the wheel as they now apply the logic and algorithms of Mark Zuckerberg (founder and owner of Facebook, multi-billionaire) to everything they touch.
Question 1: Does it earn us money?
Question 2: Does it get us liked?
Once a Company has filled its order books the ladder is comes up really quick!
In order to be popular, content has to generate likes & shares and the consumer of this content must be made to feel cool and "in" just for reading it. There has to be a tangible reward for sharing it. Money is not the only reward there is, many people perceive their own popularity as a very valid reward.
The problem is that we have 75% old people in Aviation (old is over 60) who have been conditioned to think that the association is the only viable way to connect and do "something" and many of them completely ignore or underestimate the power and reach of social media.
The youngsters (35-50 crowd) exist primarily online, are connected everywhere and under the impression that they are doing the very best thing by increasing aviations popularity. They like, share, post, share some more and touch (but rarely Read and Comprehend) hundreds of pieces of content, every single day. Very little of it sticks!
Here comes the fun part. IF Facebook thinks that, in order to reach anyone, the content should be boosted or paid for, then it suddenly doesn't matter if you like or follow the page, you just WON'T see it or won't see it within the effective time period. I just today found a petition a friend of mine shared 3+ days ago. Had I been shown what and whom I CHOSE to follow when he posted it, then I could have taken action 3 days sooner. We all know what a good idea it is to send the call to action on the day of, right?
The ratio Facebook applies is between 5-8%. If your site has 1000 Likes, approximately 100 of your fans will see what you posted, often less. Generated reach is then dependent on the interconnection of Aviation people who follow each other.
Klaus who likes Seaplanemagazine.com on Facebook sees what I share, but Daryl Doherty who also likes the page, doesn't. But Daryl and Klaus are friends and with some luck, Daryl gets to see what Klaus just liked and shared. So, Daryl likes what Klaus liked and that's why Paul's wife Nancy (who doesn't know that there is a Seaplanemagazine.com sees a picture she likes. She shares or likes the picture and that's how Paul learns that there is a Seaplanemagazine.com.
Paul then likes one of my articles, (which I see) and now I can invite him to like and follow my page, starting the process anew.
The more likes and followers I have, the more Facebook thinks I should be paying for the reach. IOW's organic reach is directly and inversely proportional to the popularity Facebook thinks I should be able to attain without paying.
To test your thesis to kill social media, I invite you to look around on your most favorite forums and tell me if traffic and post-count have decreased or increased over the last 3 years.
SPA Website & Forum: Dead.
Each one of those sites have Facebook Pages. Each, except Seaplaneforum.com are very popular on Facebook even though they produce no or not much shareable content. Who wants to read discussions between disgruntled fatalists on Facebook? I don't. That's why SPA doesn't talk much substance on its Facebook page, but rather shares other people's and companies paid reach. Increasing one's popularity spells a certain percentage of people who will join and pay dues so that they are part of the cool and self declared heros of Seaplane Aviation. That's ALL that ever matters.
I believe we ought to prepare for pop up TFR'S and permanent no fly zones around schools before too long.