Seven Quick Takes
Here’s my take on Kelly’s seven deadly sins on Facebook.
Don’t act in the virtual world like you would in the real world.
There is a seeming disconnect with the way people interact online compared to in real life. Why? I am not sure if it is the anonymity, but there seems to be a different kind of social code which is quite detrimental to good relationships. It’s almost like a self-sabotaging environment, where acting like a Vogon is considered acceptable, rather than something detrimental that you would seek to overcome.
Appear in such a way that those who know you well wouldn’t recognise you online.
Being authentic is as important on the digital continent as it is on the real continent you live on. Would your husband/best friend/children recognise you in your posts? It’s the ones who live under the same roof as us who are the best gauges of this. What do they think of your online interactions?
Only posts favourable images of your life that make you the envy of everyone else.
Sometimes it’s the ordinary life images I love the most from my friends who are just muddling along like everyone else, or the funny re post or sharing that encourages and brings a smile to my face.
Never like or comment on social media posts.
I have never been a big fan of leaving likes and comments, until I read this post by Joshua Becker . It really struck me how I would naturally give someone an encouraging or even just polite smile if I spoke to them face-to-face, and how a “like” on Facebook or any other social media is the equivalent, but I had not been doing this. I also discovered once I started to do this with every post I read, how it took more effort from me, but also meant I have not been mindlessly scrolling Fb as much. It takes courage to put yourself “out there” (speaking from blogging experience), and an encouraging gesture can do wonders for someone, even if you don’t agree with them entirely.
Use social media as a soapbox.
In the real world, would you only ever speak to people while shouting (i.e. using capitals) and on the most inflammatory issues that are going to put people off? I don’t mean you shouldn’t be courageous in defence of the faith, but put it through the filter of the context.. Would you walk up to a group of strangers or friends of friends and shout : “YOU ARE ALL WRONG ABOUT __________ ” ?
Demand a response from those who read your posts but making them feel guilty.
Things like : “If you really cared about _________ you will share this post.” or “Most people are heartless losers and won’t share this but if you care about this issue then like this post.”
Never reflect on what you post beforehand.
Sometimes we can fall into analysis by paralysis which isn’t good when called to be courageous, but being brave doesn’t mean being foolish, and if you are really angry about something, you are probably wiser to sleep on it beforehand. If you still feel the same way the next day, and you would walk up to a group of strangers and say the same thing as you want to post, then go right ahead.
Just a caveat: I have done all these things and made all these mistakes, so I am not pointing the finger at others. This advice applies just as much to me as anyone else, and I have been tempted often in all these ways. If you want to see some more great insights into these, head over to This Ain’t the Lyceum.
Linking up with Kelly at This Ain’t the Lyceum.