To share, or not to share?
When people share information that’s actually misinformation:
how to avoid the internet scams.
Social media can be a double edged sword. Sometimes it’s a convenient source of information, and a great way to share slices of life with family and friends.
Other times, it can be a nightmare as people fall for scams, misleading and even fabricated news.
So how do you decide if you should promote that post that you deem shareworthy? Here are a few “don’ts” of social media sharing.
1. No, you should not boycott Starbucks because they treated military poorly.
(It’s not true. Don’t just share, look it up.) It’s unfair to damage the reputation of a business because of some fabricated story you saw on Facebook.
2. No, you should NOT like and share the picture of the little baby in ICU in need of prayers (UNLESS it’s someone you know.)
There are unscrupulous people who collect these pics without parents’ permission and share them to build their Facebook followings via likes and shares. Then they SELL the page when it reaches a designated number of followers to entrepreneurs who want a built-in page following of 100K or more and are willing to pay for it. (Then the buyers change the name of the page to their business’ name.) BEFORE you share, click the name of the person sharing and see if it’s their M.O. Do not help them profit from the misfortune of innocent babies.
3. No, you should not share the posts that say you’ll get a free $100 gift certificate, or 50% all of your purchases at Bed, Bath & Beyond, or free airline or cruise tickets or any such stuff.
Think about it. Facebook has how many followers? If these businesses gave all of this away to everyone on Facebook, they’d be bankrupt in ten minutes. When in doubt, click the name of the page before you share. Most likely, it is a spoof page started last week and that’s its only post. (See item 2 above.) Common sense, people.
4. No, you should NOT share that post that maligns someone’s character unless you have checked the facts and know the information to be true.
People with personal agendas distort or misrepresent the truth and count on the (for lack of a better word) ignorance of others to help spread that agenda. In this case, “ignorance” means ignorance of the facts simply due to lack of research. I’ve seen very intelligent people suckered by such tactics. Just because you read it on Facebook or saw it via “media” does not mean it’s always accurate. Don’t become an agenda puppet by sharing before you have all of the facts.
We live in a world that’s becoming more and more sensationalized while concurrently becoming more and more desensitized and less compassionate.
We scroll through photos showing the horror of a school massacre, on to the next post, yet stop, read and share skewed news and gossip.
That’s just not okay.