Why I’m Starting To Dislike Social Media…

Please be warned that this post is a bit of a rant, and I may sound unreasonable at times.

Social media. Oh, social media. I have defended you, loved you, and become a fan in equal measure. But I am REALLY SICK of how you’re being used. More specifically; to spread drama, create rumours, and adding ‘fake news’ to the mix. All you seem to do is spread ill will.

I use Twitter and Instagram, to keep in touch with people I know, as well as to promote my blog, this little space on the internet. And it has bought me a wealth of experiences, all of which I am truly grateful for. It contributes to my readership, brands working with me, blog comments, garnering guest posters, getting a favourite writer to follow me, and it keeps me informed of new releases-be it books, albums, monopoly, etc. All is well.

But it’s just so divisive. And I’m starting to dislike social media.

Since when was it ever okay to film someone on Snapchat, without their consent? Post in the same vein on Facebook? Tweet our MP’s death threats? Spread homophobic abuse? Judge other people’s choices? Troll brands? Troll people? Create ‘fake news’? And-for want of another word-slag  off other bloggers? When was any of this every okay, or deemed acceptable to post?

I’m tired of this. So, so tired.

To use social media to harass, bully, demean is disgusting behaviour. And I’m fed up with seeing Blogger pit themselves against each other. I’m sick of seeing an electorate sprout untruths and wish ill will on their representatives. I feel sick to my stomach at all of this. We have to be better than this.

And this fake news. FAKE NEWS! Where, just WHERE is the gain in spreading complete lies? And Facebook has even rolled out a guide as how to spot it.

Technology could be used to better ourselves-start a blog, keep in contact with people you know and love, keep up to date with current affairs. But express whatever opinion you have so that it’s measured. No one should be made to feel afraid. No one should be made to feel isolated.

 

Untitled design

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Last year I was trolled. And this is my response.

It started off reading another blog; or, as I prefer,being inspired to write a blog post by another really talented blogger. Lauren at This Stuff Is Golden . She’d written the endearing post of Forty Things To Teach My Future Daughter. (Again, click here to view.) Go on. Read it. It’s a good post. 

I’d written this post: A letter to my future daughter. Caitlin Moran had also written a letter to her daughters. That’s a brilliant version. So, I had to have a go. Besides, I was soooo bored on a really long, delayed train journey. So, best put the time waiting and travelling to good use, right? I wouldn’t have dared to write such a thing anyway.  Nothing to loose, right? Besides the waiting time and the extra hour added to my initial journey. Anyway, I digress.

I wish to teach acceptance for differing viewpoints..

This post seemed to be well received; comments, likes, retweets, etc.

But the sticking point; surely there should also be a version to ‘my future son’? After all, this would equalise things, and add an element of equality. I couldn’t just write for a daughter, after all. That doesn’t fit with my general ethos.

Granted, it was a bit of a slapdash effort. But this was a post I was really proud of. It reflected what I wished to say! (I’m not great at communicating at the best of times, so it seemed akin to a real achievement. Something done well, and to take pride in.) And it was then trolled. Trolled! Believe me, that hasn’t happened in a while-not since I was told off by an angry Twitter user, for using ‘girls’ instead of ‘women.’ Yep.

The accusations were many: I had thought of ‘my son’ as an after thought; that I had not been as endearing; that I had ranted at him; that I had assumed he’d have been a bully; that this post perpetrates a dangerous form of feminism-and female superiority; and that he wasn’t as important as my daughter.

One small point that was missed out; I don’t have any kids. If you’re going to feedback on something, at least get the facts right first, and read the post! And, most of all, don’t be hateful!!

I had not made any of these assumptions; rather, I believe in equality for everyone. And not a female superiority. Because we all have things we could learn from each other, and collaborate towards a better goal. I hadn’t ranted either; I had tried to make the point of kindness in both letters. I had tried to be endearing, but wanted to avoid a sentimental tone-one that had been overused in the first point. Everyone is just as important as each other to me-we’re a collective as humans. So, not an after thought-I was busy, and couldn’t post. 

The post and comment has been deleted. But if you’re trolling, it’ll be moderated. And you won’t be allowed access to this blog again.

This hateful language is now the way the internet speaks-and again, Caitlin Moran recently wrote an excellent piece about this. It also shows disgusting contempt and utter foolishness. This is a great tool to come from the last thirty years; why can’t we utilise it properly? Instead of being horrible, spreading slander (fake news, anyone?), and just attacking somebody for their viewpoint, we could create a more comprehensive blog universe, promote great works of literature, send a kind word or two, and spread awareness of diseases, mental health issues, etc. It could innovate far more than what it does now. 

For now, I won’t have ‘a letter to my future son’ to be read on this blog. But I might one day…

What do you think?

Lydia

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