Monday, May 05, 2014

Social Media - Behaving Badly

It’s true, I haven’t blogged properly in a few months, and I think it not only has something to do with my life being so busy, but also to do with the fact that I’ve lost a little faith in the on-line community.

I’m aware that this topic has been broached many times before, but today I wanted to talk about my opinion when it comes to social media, and how we behave.

Something happened to me on-line a few weeks ago that upset me for a number of reasons. Someone I had built a relationship with over the past year or so came into my personal on-line space and advertised their product to my followers without my consent. I was hurt that this person thought it was okay to do this. We have a professional relationship, we have never met, and we are not friends. Yet they thought it was okay to use me to try and get ahead. This is not the first time it’s happened to me, and I usually just delete the offender’s post and move on. But this time was different because the person was not a complete stranger.

It seems that in this electronic age, manners and courtesy have flown out the window, and perched themselves somewhere on the fine line between cyberspace and reality. The way we conduct ourselves on-line should mirror the way we act in our everyday lives. Just because we’re hiding behind computer screens and mobile devices, does not give us the right to be inconsiderate of other people. We should talk and communicate on-line as respectfully as we do in everyday life.

I hate that we live in a world where a lot of people seem to be out for themselves.

I’m not like that. If I need help, I ask for it, but I also offer help in return. Social media is just that—it’s social. It is not an advertising billboard for everyone to hijack. It is not okay to come to someone else’s Facebook page and blatantly advertise a business. If there is an established relationship between two people, it still does not give someone the right to promote themselves using the other person’s resources and fan base. When it comes to my social media outlets, if I feel that something is worth sharing with my fans and followers, then I’ll share it. It is not something for someone else to decide.

Think about it this way: would you walk into a brick and mortar store (of any kind) and stick a poster advertising your services in their window? Without asking? I’m pretty sure they would ask you to remove it and then ask you to leave. The same applies for social media.

Have we all become so complacent that we don’t know how to ask, say please and/or thank you?

What are your thoughts on the way people use, and maybe abuse, social media?

K x

5 comments:

  1. I agree with you. Social media has definitely reduced the frequency of good manners (or maybe it was always this bad but now it's obvious). I recently had this lament about a formerly good friend who has basically given up on calling me, even for my birthday. All I get is the very occasional one-line message on Facebook. It made me sad because that's not really my idea of friendship. Maybe I'm an old fuddy duddy.

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  2. What I meant to add was that you shouldn't let it put you off blogging. Because you're busy, sure, that's a good reason. But because some people are clueless and/or selfish? Don't let that rob you of a good thing!

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    1. Thanks Cass, and you are not a fuddy duddy. I have friends like that, too, and it also makes me sad.

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  3. Oh I absolutely agree. You've summed up my thoughts perfectly on this. ;) I think it's super sad how people feel...oh gosh, I don't know...almost a "devil may care" attitude on the computer. Like the people we're interacting with aren't real or something? It's not true! I wouldn't tell a complete stranger they sucked to their face, so why would I do it online? I don't get that attitude at all. I feel for you with that situation. It's really icky and I hope it doesn't happen again, eh? We can always hope!

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    1. Thanks Cait. Yes we can hope! Unfortunately there will always be the exception.

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