Do Social Media Posts Matter?

be careful of what you post on social media

Do you remember when we waited for the mail man or the newspaper to find out the latest news update?

Can you recall how we’d accomplish tasks without the use of cell phones? I often wonder how we communicated before the exponential increase in technology and I just cannot fathom this. Some days, if I do not check my phone, I get all fidgety because it has become a relevant part of my life – it’s like oxygen.

Today, EVERYTHING IS VIRTUAL, even before the news sites announce it, we are aware.

We’ve heard the stereotype that millennials have changed the way we use of social media; not being able to accomplish anything without sharing online and documenting everything. Their news feeds have become the new oxygen since they read news on the phone, check updates frequently and manage to post and share everything online, sometimes, without considering the negative attention which they attract into their lives.

The millennial generation or generation Y, according to Howe and Strauss were born between 1982 and 2004.  We were born in an era when the technology boom began, and being exposed to technology at a very young age, created a dependency syndrome that has managed to drain the sense out of us. Almost every individual owns a either a tablet, a cellphone, an iPod, laptop, kindle or a combination of these and more.

The Internet has changed the way we do everything including our preference for certain goods and services. The rapid rise in online courses and degrees is so astounding, that people do not need to travel miles to obtain higher education. We live in the virtual age where you operate at your own convenience. More people work remotely from their homes or anywhere they choose, and everything is just a click away.

According to Goldman Sachs analyst report, Nike, giant sportswear brand has is considering opening up shop on Amazon to boost revenue. Will this increased their online presence significantly?

Are retailers benefiting more from online shopping vs. brick and mortar sales?

There are no more geographical limitations as it relates to shopping, since consumers can now access goods online from anywhere with just one simple click – it becomes accessible to all based on affordability.

It is a win-win for businesses because it allows them to communicate directly with the consumer and vice versa, simultaneously giving them a wider reach.

Social media is the new shit. Thumbs up! It’s trending in 2017.

While you might enjoy the numerous advantages and conveniences of social media, whether it’s to advocate for a cause, for leisure, or to conduct business, you have to be mindful of what information you divulge to the public.

I have observed that social media is enforcing a lot of negative behavior, and the rate at which negative news is spread is high. It does not take much to make a post go viral.

Some people spread propaganda, tarnish reputations and defame one’s character through subtle and direct comments.

It has also created a stalker syndrome where strangers contact you directly but do not interact with you in real life. Persons pass you on the streets without acknowledging you, but will send you friend requests on Facebook or follow you on Instagram.

I’ve also observed that nude pictures receive more attention than decent ones. My generation is posting half-naked pictures to attract attention or to ruin another‘s character.

Technology has opened new doors and almost everyone has at least one social media account, the advantages being the ease of communication and the inexpensiveness to stay connected with family and friends residing all around the globe.

However, we have to be very cautious with our online activity; these 3 reasons will explain why you should be careful of what you post on social media.

1. Employers now utilize social media to research their potential interview candidates: LinkedIn is the #1 professional networking site where you can enter your credentials and connect with persons. Recruiters usually utilize LinkedIn to check for applicants’ online presence. Irrespective of the fact that you may have a very attractive resume, if your character isn’t, then most likely this will affect your chances of getting the job (depending on the type of job). Some employers value professionalism. Given the popularity of “twerking,” many people have become absorbed and inclined to post online.

The picture of you and your friends drunk at a club should not be on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumbler, etc; there are ramifications since you are not certain as to the career path you might want to take. Your reputation might be the tarnished due to one picture or video. But you can protect your social reputation by being vigilant with your activities.

Keep work related issues private. I know you might be dying to share the details of your exciting new job and even a promotion. But sometimes these things are best kept private. If you want to tell your friends, send a personal email. Likewise, if you are not pleased with a situation which occurred at the office, do not lambaste colleagues or the company on social media. You may not have them as friends, but I guarantee you, it will resurface and you will not look good.

2. You attract stalkers: Sharing too much personal information with the world opens doors for kidnappers, stalkers and more. The constant update of your daily whereabouts, checking-in to every location and tweets of your next move is not advisable.

By putting your home address and contact information on social platforms, you are making yourself a target. For example, checking in at home instantly gives a stalker your exact address. If you are home alone, then do not share it. You never know who is following your posts. If someone wants to track you, they don’t have to work hard, they can simply monitor your routine since you post it daily.

Moreover, sharing images of your toddler or adolescent on social media can create negative press.

3. Exposing others’ information: It is a common trend for persons to share images of accidents on Facebook without thinking of the psychological effects it will have on the victim’s families. Would you want to find out that your relative has died in an accident by seeing the image online? It is quite insensitive and we ought to stop contributing to the negative masses by sharing these things. Is sharing caring?  

Should someone post derogatory images of persons who are not on Facebook or who are not aware, for the purpose of seeking attention? These provocative pictures and videos  are shared instantly.  In some instances, these pictures or videos were taken oblivious to the individual. I know you might want a little humor but, you should be vigilant. If it is not positive then please don’t share or post. Most times this creates negative stigma which can be difficult to recover from.

Additionally, sharing heinous videos and images that promote negative graffiti, sexual assault and domestic violence etc. is unacceptable. No matter how popular it is, there is a place and time for everything. It is so important that we think of the consequences of our actions before doing it.

This article is solely my opinion, and does not act as judgment on my part. However, everything has a positive and negative, and I really hope you contemplate your actions when you are using technology because there will be detrimental effects if it is not used wisely.  Think, not twice, but thrice before posting something on any form of social media. Remember, the world is watching! And some things once published, even if you delete from your profile, cannot be erased.

What are your experiences with social media? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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