Since the Covid19 introduction has flipped our realities. The whole World has turned inside out and upside down in more ways than we know. We have ARRIVED at the tipping point of our century’s locus of Change.
We are now at the cusp of our social evolution.
With all these changes in our World and society, we discover that there are a few trending issues that might soon become not a trend anymore but a new social norm that is not only destructive but abusive and chaotic in nature.
One very outstanding issue that’s becoming a toxic and destructive trend is How We Use Social Media. The age of viruses and virals are here to stay. So how do we manage it? How do we restrain ourselves from abusing this platform of communication and creating awareness? How can we be more responsible and take more care in how we project our thoughts and ideas ?
All forms of social media are included in this, which means all social networks across the board, all apps from all platforms and brands, podcasts, blogs, tv and entertainment, tubes, advertising, independent radio, public forums and all other spaces for expression, education, public announcements and all forms of communication.
- Check Your Intention
We love dishing out our thoughts, opinions, views and perspectives ~ which all mean the same thing anyway. We want to be heard by writing out our beliefs and how we view the whole issue or situation. Maybe not necessarily to get attention but just a platform to voice out our thoughts, like you would a journal.
Now to begin with, who are you in this context? Are you the one that’s posting your opinion or are you the one commenting on an opinion ? It varies.
As the one posting, what is your intention for this post? What do you want to garner from this shout out? Is it Awareness? Is it a self reflection or awakening that you just come to realise and you want to share your experience? Or is it an attack towards a particular person or institution? Is it a blast of outrage because of your frustrations about it? Does it sound angry, comforting, worrying or desperate? Are you exposing an injustice? Is it a campaign?
So check your intention and check it again and again before publishing it.
2. Check Your Words
Like for myself, before I officially post something online, I reread and edit my post so many times that sometimes it could take a whole day to a week, to craft a post that could highlight my true intention to the general public. Words and punctuations, bold letterings and words in caps lock also matter. And sometimes even with so much care, there are still one or two people who view positive sharings as a negative because they associate with it in the negative light. Though this very rare instances happen to me, I take it in good stride and brush off anything that was not constructive. It takes a few days to get out of not fully being affected by the cyber bullies or irrelevant comments that show up on my post. Sometimes, it’s just a difference of opinion or conflict of interest, and that’s all. And other times, it’s because the “haters” are the Sleepers of society and they are less aware of what they project. So I forgive them for this ignorance and move on.
As the one commenting, check what is the point of your comment? Does it bring knowledge? Does it impose or suppress another perspective ? Is it harmful? What style of language are you using? Are the words demeaning? Constructive? Or hurtful and attacking? Are you using positive language to show your support and love? How does it better your relationship with the issue at hand or the person you’re commenting on? Is it relevant or just an opinion? Would your comment be taken as good or negative feedback? Is it just a conflict of interest and a different perspective?
3. Check if this is the Right/ Relevant Avenue to Post At
Before you go all keyboard warrior on a person/company/organization’s post and views that they put to public, pause and reflect on what you’re about to post as a comment. Rewrite it again and again. If it still bothers you, do the right thing by voicing your concerns privately with the person or institution even though you are almost certain you won’t get a response. It’s ok.
We have to accept this reality of not getting a response for our concerns. This wouldn’t be the first time a company, person or institution has never got back to you for your queries. We have to be mature about it. Maybe find an institution, organization or persons that could help you on the journey to get your point across. Search for the correct avenue to voice your concerns. Maybe an associated forum? A venue where people who face the same issues can share their views on it? An online support group or persons who are prominent figures that represent that subject? There are several ways you can go about this.
When you post/comment your opinions with no care in relation to the subject, you will create unnecessary chaos in yourself, in the parties involved and also to the general public that is reading what you just posted or said.
YOU WILL AFFECT EVERYONE, you have to understand where this will lead to. You might be the cause of a ripple effect of online bullying and public bashing because of your outrage or irresponsible way of highlighting a matter.
Ok let’s zoom in on what “Freedom of Speech” actually entails.
Though we may think that there are no official rules in place as we are all “taught to believe” that freedom of speech is liberal and carefree, this in fact, is a false notion. Below is an excerpt highlighting the Human Rights Law, it states.
Definition/Human Rights Law/ Origins/Limitations:
Freedom of speech is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or a community to articulate their opinions and ideas without fear of retaliation, censorship, or legal sanction. Article 19 of the UDHR states that “everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference” and “everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice”.
The version of Article 19 in the ICCPR later amends this by stating that the exercise of these rights carries “special duties and responsibilities” and may “therefore be subject to certain restrictions” when necessary “or respect of the rights or reputation of others” or “[f]or the protection of national security or of public order (order public), or of public health or morals”.Source: wikipedia
There you have it, a simple explanation on this matter if so you had any doubts about what “Freedom of Speech” entails. If you are always arguing about this right and that right of doing whatever, this will make you understand it crystal clear.
“You can exercise this freedom as long as you carry the duties and responsibilities that comes along with this right. If not then you shouldn’t exercise this right. ” – LM
Folks, it’s plain and simple. If you’re someone in the public eye, an actor, singer, an Influencer or Content Creator whatever the label is these days, even if you’re a local poet or singer of a small following of ten listeners, you are subjected to these limitations because people listen to you, get influenced by you, idolize you, support you, believe in you and value your thoughts, views and opinions. Some may try to dress like you, talk like you, behave like you and look up to you as their generations very own role model, so you have a great responsibility on your shoulders when you project out your views and thoughts into the World.
It’s not about “Don’t like it, don’t read, don’t listen and swipe left, thank you next ” anymore. If its expressed in a public setting and hundreds, thousands or millions are listening to it, watching it or reading about it, then you have to take a moment to craft your intention in the best way possible. Rules and Universal laws are what separates us from animals and the “third kind”. If we don’t have this in mind, we are no different from animals who practice sexual coercion or like the praying mantis that kills after it mates . Get it?
Here are the guidelines again to recap.
Guidelines when about to comment, post or voice out an expression, opinion or thoughts/ideas:
1. Check your intention
2. Check your words
3. Check if this is the Right/ Relevant Avenue to Post At
It is a pain to watch public bashings amongst people who just have differences in beliefs and opinions. So take extra care and thought into what you are projecting to the masses.
On that note, to all Followers, Listeners, Subscribers and Fan clubs of whoever and whichever Idol or Brand, stop fanning the flames and nip it in the butt. Don’t be an overly obsessed fangirl or boy blindly and stubbornly defending a statement or a behaviour of the one you “idolize” or support. This promotes delinquent and rebellious acts of resistance and unintelligent thought processing. It is a fangirl/boy habit and culture that needs to be stopped.
Be responsible when you post or comment online or anywhere for that matter. We share ideas on the internet especially, to get support, motivate, educate and spread awareness, not to create chaos and inflict harm. Those (who create chaos and inflict harm) are for terrorists, extremists, cults and hate groups. We let the authorities and God deal with them.
From now on , pause and reflect on these guidelines and reorganize or restructure your values and intentions when you use social media or spread anything that may turn viral.
Your awareness of this, matters.
If you can’t bring yourself to use the guidelines, at least fall back on your religious beliefs and upbringing. Or exercise the Human Rights Law for freedom of speech/expression.
I found this saying not too long ago that describes it best.
The Hammer that shatters glass forges steel.
In this context of social media responsibilities, it means that the same outlet/platform that has the capability to cause destruction and chaos is also used to campaign support, create awareness, educate and motivate. The content must be in congruent with the context so that the key message can be heard and understood in the best way possible. This applies to what you say, do and write about too.
That’s it from me. If you’d like to read inspirational quotes, get motivated or share your thoughts and ideas, do head down to our instagram account @simplelifedaily and do check out our online store @thesimplelife.store !
Have a great weekend ahead!
Love & Peace.
Stay safe and stay sane!