When Facebook started years ago (not really sure because now it seems to have been around forever) it was for college kids. They posted what school they went to, who they were partying with, and what they would do over the summer. Then the adults figured it out. And according to many young people…ruined it. I’m starting to think they are right.

Here’s what adults have inflicted on Facebook…

  • Facebook has become a venue for a plethora of sappy posters, ramblings, and other inanities. Last year, I had to block all the dumb games. Now my News Feed is filled with these posters. I’ve found one that was funny and I passed it on. Ironically it was on social media. The rest are mostly awful. Now, they are all over the place!
  • It’s election season and I may have to take a 6-month hiatus. It’s bad enough to see a gazillion signs littered around our streets; horrid and often inaccurate commercials; and political debates that have become a circus. Now, I get to see every party – Republicans, Democrats, Independents, Tea Party, Tea Drinkers, and the Field – tell me their opinions and attitudes. I get the right to voice your opinion and overall, that’s okay. The problem is the way it now is delivered. This leads me the next bullet point…
  • If you’re having a political conversation or discussion in person, you have more at stake to be civil. Now, even with your profile picture showing, it seems acceptable to talk like a belligerent drunk. Bad language, name calling, and vitriol unleashed. It used to be that Facebook was on par with walking around a cocktail party. Now, its 1:30 in the morning in a bar and chairs are flying.
  • I don’t care if you are a Republican or Democrat (or one of the others); Pro-Life or Pro-Choice; For Gay Marriage Against Gay Marriage; Baby Boomer or Gen Xer; Like Cats or Hate Cats; Like the Patriots or Hate the Patriots; or on any side of any controversy; do yourself a favor. Be nice. Don’t think that just because someone may have a different opinion than you (and on Facebook you have no idea), that they are damaged. You never know who may be reading and how it may affect your ability to do business with them, or even to remain friends. I think the kids get this better than the adults do.

While I’m firmly positioned on my Soap Box, I’m going to continue…what the heck…I’m probably being “DE-friended” all over the place:

  • Think twice about posting a picture of you with a huge cocktail in front of you as your profile picture. Yes, you’re undoubtedly well over 21 years old and it’s legal for you to drink. Just remember that a growing number of employers check out Facebook profiles prior to hiring. Even if they can’t see your wall, they can see your profile picture. Just saying…
  • Think about what you can do to enhance relationships and improve others personally and professionally (for you business people), rather than insulting the other person’s intelligence.
  • Voice your opinion. Just don’t assume the people on the other side (normally pretty close to 50%) is damaged. They just have a different opinion. Voice your opinion maturely.
  • Don’t swear or curse (and that includes all the funky acronyms and spellings – we get it). It doesn’t ever show well for you.
  • Use this amazing technology to re-connect with family and friends; help others in their business; promote the value your business can offer others; learn about others; promote your favorite charities; and share photos of your life with your friends.
  • Be careful what you say. You never know who is reading. Be certain you’re willing to standby what you say and how you said it.

Okay, I’m stepping off my Soap Box. Facebook is about to go public. I’m certain it’s because they see a huge opportunity to make money as they watch adults turn this once innocuous platform for kids into a place where adults can aggressively spar and spit while sitting comfortably behind their computer screen or cell phone. As 2012 moves closer to elections, my guess is it will only get worse. My guess is that when it does, many adults and kids alike will begin to be more careful about who they “hang out” with…

© 2012 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved


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