Social Media Ethics And Our Content
Michael Lodge, NCPM, CRTP - Nationally Certified Professional Mediator - www.lodge-co.com
All of us are using social media in some form or fashion. We use it to talk to our friends and relatives, and some of us are using it for our business and even for our political agendas. Political agendas have taken over all forms. In fact, social media has now started to censor people content and sometimes shutting off accounts because of political content. It has become a ruthless game by the social media giants and the freedom of speech, to outright lies and misinformation to support various political agendas.
In November of 2020 millions turned off Facebook and Twitter because of their censorship. A lot of people jumped over to Parler and MeWe and their membership grew by leaps and bounds. To be honest with you I hate censorship. The only words that should be eliminated are those of hate I was one that jumped from Twitter to Parler and it has been an interesting experience. It seems that once people have their freedom of speech, they think they can put out any content that is not true, rumors, or pure nonsense. This happened on Twitter also from all sides of left and right. However, on Parler it is mostly right leaning conservatives or far far right individuals. Even the known journalists have joined Parler and they are spouting off stuff with no backup or confirmation.
Good example, one fox news host made a statement that Chief Justice Roberts had made a statement to another judge that he would never allow President Trump to be President. However, the Fox host had no backup, proof, or statement from the person who heard the statement or their name, to back up what they wrote as their content on their page. I challenged the Fox person on where it came from - no response. There seems to be this feeling that once you have free speech it gives you the license to put out bad untruthful content.
I will defend free speech or anyone, no matter what you think politically, however if you are going to put out nonsense, I am going to challenge you on your content. In fact, that is part of free speech - to be challenged on the facts and truths of your content. If you have a challenge as evil, then you probably should not be on social media because everyone has the right to challenge the content you are putting out there. Check and balance is part of free speech. The social media giants should not be screening out content (unless pure hate), that is our jobs as people reading this stuff. Challenge the content if you feel it is not factual. It does not mean you have to be a bully or and ass, just challenge the content in an ethical way.
All of us must be ethical in our content and in our responses to content. There is always the question of what is right and wrong. If it is wrong - challenge it. Question it. Put the writer of the content on notice that you feel their content is misleading or untruthful, ask for facts. And when we write our content, we have got to be more thoughtful and fact checking of our own work. If you cannot prove what you are saying - do not say it. Have proof for everything.
We are responsible for our content to make sure it is honest, and we must challenge content that we feel is not honest. We can improve social media and hold people accountable for their content. The same goes for holding all media outlets responsible for their content and reporting. The age of the un-named source is over with. Once you hear the reporter is using an un-named source, they are probably spreading their own political agenda and now real news reporting. Hold them accountable.
2021 is going to be the start of a new type of content monitoring because it has to be you and me to challenge the content on social media and the mainstream media. Let us be honest in our content and hold others to be honest in their content.
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Michael Lodge is a Nationally Certified Professional Mediator specializing in business disputes, as well as family conflicts. He has written three books and hosts an international podcast on IHeartRadio and other podcast media stations.