It was my first time being invited to sit at a panel about a week ago [week ago], where we discussed Social media. While I felt I was not well qualified with a lot of insight into technology in that sphere, I soon found that I knew quite enough to hold my own. It was an intriguing conversation that we had and I'd like to carry that on here and share the knowledge I gained from the experience that might be beneficial to others.
When we think about social media, there are so many facets to social media and its usage in modern times.
The first and most important thing worth highlighting is that social media is really just technology. Social media in itself is a bunch of algorithms, which we interact with as users. This is how the current social media trend is to try to show content you may like versus showing content in order of time published. We then use this technology in whatever direction we choose to. Social media in itself is not inherently bad nor is it particularly good. It is what we bring to it.
If a few people hide behind social media to say mean things they would generally not say in real life, that is not the fault of social media, it really is the avenue they have chosen to use. You will find that people have used and still use graffiti, anonymous mailed letters, vandalism, etc to do mean things they would not want attributed to themselves.
If some others would rather do good deeds, share the love and put out good into the world via social media, I have the belief that those people will generally do good things elsewhere regardless of social media's existence.
In today's world, a lot of people get their news and information via social media which is a really good thing we have channeled the tool of social media into. However, as social media has evolved, you will find that the kind of news you get from social media is really pre-filtered based on the what and who dominates your social media.
In simple English, if Donald Trump is your source for reliable information, you’re making terrible life choices. #fakenews
News & information from social media is slowly becoming a feedback loop where people with a certain belief system follow each other, retweet each other and as a result reinforce their own beliefs. Their social media is then set up in a way that only news relevant to them and their beliefs 'pops' with a lot of engagements while the ones they'd rather be distanced from is left to wallow in the abyss of political incorrectness.
This is how a lot of people on social media could find outrage in Clinton losing an election in-spite of popularity, but I'm curious; who Voted the other guy then? Weren't they on social media too?
One really important use of social media today is that it portrays the user's brand and MO. In a lot of ways, social media is now people's first impression. No longer does it matter that you awkwardly introduced yourself with the worst possible lyrics known to impress someone. If your instagram isn't popping, nobody wants to waste time to discover more about you.
What we need to realize in a lot of ways, because of the model social media uses for revenue, the users are the product. That's right, we are the product. So it is very important we fully utilize the tools woven into the fabric of each platform we use. Make sure your social media represents you in your full glory. That's not to say be narcissistic. What I mean is, let your social media be distinctly you and what you're about. If you're about fashion, put it on there. If business analysis suits you, analyze that business there and be about articles thereof.
You get my point.
During our talk, we had a question about the protection of our data and its security. Luckily we have tech companies who are highly responsible with the data the collect. Google, arguably the best at data collection, has a team dedicated to thinking about your privacy. You can learn more about that team here.
Tech companies generally encrypt data and work tirelessly to ensure its security. You can only imagine how much damage a massive security leak does to their reputation, their customers and of course their revenue. On that front, I wouldn't worry too much.
On a personal and individual level, I will be the first to admit that if I cannot find any social media footprint of yours, I will assume you are either a serial killer, a dinosaur or in a crisis and you deleted your accounts. Either way, I can't trust you.
All those that don't have ANY social media and say it's for privacy can please go here. Do the needful and turn yourselves in. Stop scamming the rest of the world.
If you're on social media long enough, you'll find somebody going on a rant about something. There is always some cause champion flooding the timeline with the next cause we need to get behind. There are a lot of good causes that deserve public backing for sure, but what we notice is that there is little actual involvement after the dust from the keyboard has settled.
#Kony2012? #BringBackOurGirls? #JeSuisCharlie?
Most people drop a tweet/status and go about their merry way. Sure, awareness is good but in real life; without any action, the thought counts for nothing.
On the flip side of this, everyone now has a voice to publish and broadcast their opinions. Something we've never really had in the history, the opportunity for the common man to be one view, comment, tweet, like from elites, socialites and politicians in power.
This is the key part to social media and the internet at large. When you post something on there, you may safely assume it will never come down. I'm looking at you snapchat. In general, your photo, text, snap, tweet can be copied, screenshot, backed up, scanned, faxed, recorded, you name it; the moment you decide to hit that send. Better yet, once you upload it, that thing no longer belongs to you. It is in the hands of the internet, at the mercy of the trolls, your followers and your haters.
So, it is very important to be conscious of your brand and your footprint. Do not become a fake version of you because you want to be a goody two shoes. That said, if you're a goody two shoes, your facebook and LinkedIn profile picture matching type of good for nothing, welcome to the club. Hi 5!
I know I said footprint was key, but this one is the major key, key to the city even. Please know the best use of each platform you're on. It is very essential to your mental health.
Don't use LinkedIn to hit on people.
Facebook is not a good place for #hashtags, we want your cat videos and games telling us what we'll be in 5 years instead. Your whole family is here too so behave yourself.
Twitter is a good platform to tell lies, you can ask the 45th President of the USA.
Pinterest is good for weddings and event planning.
Youtube is technically social media, everybody with a camera is a youtuber.
Snapchat is cool, your daily OOTD & turn up videos you don't want your dad to see go here.
Instagram is the best place to stalk your crush, unless you accidentally like a picture from 76 weeks ago. Yes, they saw it.
Is Quora social media for geeks or is that Reddit?
Google plus never really caught on, don't bother too much.
Whatever happened to Vine?
On that note,
Stay safe and have fun.