I have been actively engaged in “social media” for the last year and having been a huge skeptic it is interesting to watch it develop.
There are the LinkedIn pages that are developing into a professional CV broadcast, where people promote themselves and their businesses. Then there are the face book pages that enable people to keep their friends close. There is Utube, where I don’t understand how they deal with the performing rights issues. But of them all the one that I find the most difficult to deal with is twitter.
People approach twitter wearing their hearts on their sleeve, telling us everything, from what they are having for breakfast to what they are watching on TV. Why and why do they think we want to know? They use language that would never be heard on prime time TV, do they think they are anonymous, like the driver in a car clearing his ears.
What they say is public, it never be erased and will come back to haunt them in their future life. I would hate for my past mistakes to be there for everyone to dwell on and dig up for all time.
For me the best of twitter is the information that appears from places that I would never find on the internet, an article or a review. On Thursday night I was watching the riots on the BBC when someone pointed me to @adamramsay, a student in the middle of the riots. His tweets gave a real time version of what he saw and experienced. It reminded me of the social media that came from Iran after their elections.
Social media has given ordinary people a way to communicate in a way that never existed before, but it is important that it is used responsibly. We protect our children from the excesses of human kind. Social media has the power to inform, to change the world, but how do we make sure it doesn’t corrupt in the process?