Social media is a part of our daily life, most of us use it, if you are reading this now chances are you found this through some sort of social media. There are different types for different people with different interests. It is a tool, a vehicle for us to communicate with thousands, millions even from all parts of the globe in a matter of minutes.
Yesterday I started my university course in social media. I’ve only had my first lecture but my interest or social media nerdiness was tickled. The course is aimed towards the business market but the fact of the matter is social media is here to stay, like it or not. Facebook is not just a way for us to tell our friends about what we had for dinner, that we are on our way to the gym or that you are in a relationship, it has also become an important news channel. It was brought up in the lecture that politicians for example have a much better chance of reaching first time voters on Facebook rather than reaching them in the six o’clock debate on the local news. Facebook can also be a way for a disabled person to communicate easily with many, they can state their cause with acclaim and that is kind of amazing. There are countless groups on Facebook, sports groups, knitting groups, political groups and awareness and grief groups. With social media channels all sorts of people are able to reach out to so many in a way they couldn’t ten years ago and that is pretty great!!!
BUT…there is a but in my humble opinion, we have to take responsibility for what is put out there, what we “share”. On a personal level we don’t want to share the boring, mundane sides of our lives we share the glossy, happy sides of our lives and I get that!!! Personally I don’t think it’s THAT interesting to see a picture of your dinner but I’m guilty of putting #foodporn out there too. I remember a few years ago I sat alone at Christmas time, no man in my life, my kids off at their daddies. It became painful to check my news feed on FB and seeing all the smiling “perfect” families. I don’t expect anyone to take responsibility for my happiness but I do want us to be honest and I think we have become more honest as we have gotten familiar with our new friend social media. It is much easier to express our opinion but we have to accept that not everyone agrees with you…
We also have a responsibility as far as our children. I’m on Instagram and I let my 11 year old daughter get a private profile about six months ago. I trust my daughter and she does not post lots of #selfies, it’s all the others I don’t trust though!!! I feel I’m quite aware of what she gets up to in there, I go in and check, with her knowledge, what her friends are up to in there as well. A few months ago I was doing my regular inspection and found that one of the girls was holding a competition of who was the prettiest/handsome. In order to participate you had to follow the profile created for the competition and give a shoutout for the page, you were then given a score from one to ten. I must tell you I saw red!!! These are eleven year old children and the scores were not always nice, not to mention the comments. I was so angry to see this kind of internet bullying, my whole body was shaking as I called my daughters teacher to let him know what was going on…the day after the profile was deleted.
As I said earlier social media is a fantastic way to get your message heard by the masses, it is literally at your fingertips. You can get a pretty good picture of the world news on Twitter while you are on the go and perhaps with some opinions thrown in, you wouldn’t get that on the local news… I’m excited to learn more as the semester progresses, I know ethics are a pretty important issue later on down the line. For good measure I share with you my first school lunch:
#foodporn #yummy #salad #healthy
And an obligatory #selfie:
#me #happy #blond #girl
In case you were wondering you can also find me on Pinterest amongst various other places 😉