The Problem with Social Media

The Problem with Social Media

Facebook and other forms of social media have some good things about them. It is a way to see photos of nieces, nephews and children of friends and a way to keep up with the community. WTRF and WTOV Facebook pages provide "breaking news," and many worthwhile charities and other organizations can promote their causes. That is all good.

What is troubling are the comments that people post trashing someone they don't know, judging a situation when they don't have all the facts, blaming the victim of a sexual assault based on a self-serving statement by the perpetrator and just generally responding to a situation a friend or acquaintance is having with no compassion.

They say not to judge someone until you have walked a mile in their shoes. Social media makes it so easy to have a knee jerk reaction that gets shared, tweeted and retweeted until it has taken on a life of its own. Just as there is a lot of "fake news" on the national scene, this can happen on the local scene just as easily.

What are we teaching our children? We are certainly not teaching them to "love your neighbor as yourself."  This sure isn't a lesson in forgiveness and it takes the art of gossip to a whole new level.

I remind myself regularly that there is basic goodness in human beings. We see it every day when tragedy strikes and a community comes together to circle the wagons. A few bad apples can certainly make the whole bushel look bad. Maybe we can't change the bad apples. But the rest of us can make a concerted effort to think before we post. Our children are watching.


Facebook and other forms of social media have some good things about them.  It is a way to see photos of nieces, nephews and children of friends and a way to keep up with the community. WTRF and WTOV Facebook pages provide "breaking news," and many worthwhile charities and other organizations can promote their causes. That is all good.