Just the facts Ma’am

Last week, I made the mistake of engaging in a “discussion” on Facebook over what I felt, was misrepresented information.  I rarely comment on such posts for a few reasons.

  1. A vast majority of it is sensationalism
  2. I don’t believe social media is the place to discuss issues which require many layers of information & discussion
  3. I have no desire to open a dialogue on Facebook over something I don’t have actual facts or expertise in

But this one struck a chord.  It was personal & believe it or not, I actually have some expertise in the particular area this post was about.

I found myself immersed in a dialogue that left me rolling my eyes & wondering why I was bothering to waste another single one of my brain cells trying to enlighten the people invested in this thread of conversation.

I was very quickly reminded of why I don’t do this on a regular basis.  Why I see these posts & move along, instead seeking an uplifting quote, sharing a funny or inspiring video, or commenting on a picture or life event someone has shared.

I am always a wee bit stunned at11275856-confused-emoticon-stock-vector-smiley-face-cartoon how quickly people repost shit crap on social media.  No research to investigate whether there is an ounce truth in the document or study. A simple click of the share button, with the mentality of, it is on social media, so it must be so.

Seriously?  Is this what we have become?  This is how we obtain our information to make informed decisions?

I am all for freedom of speech, freedom to form and express an opinion, freedom to believe in whatever you chose, but for the love of God, know what you are talking about.

Think before you post.  Do your research & have some true understanding of what you speak.

As for me, it will be the last time I engage in this sort of dialogue.  My elevated heart rate will be saved for the gym.

Have a fabulous weekend!




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34 Responses to Just the facts Ma’am

  1. Teresa Travers says:

    We hear you, girlfriend, but if someone posts photos of victims of Assad’s chemical bombings and say it the French bombing aftermath in Syria, then I’m gonna speak up–LOUDLY :-)Hot social media discussions are quickly forgotten, so follow your conscience and speak up when YOU need to.~T

    Date: Thu, 19 Nov 2015 16:10:06 +0000 To: soofie@live.ca

    • Lynn says:

      Hey T. I appreciate your comment. I am not for one second suggesting we stay silent on issues we believe in & feel strongly about. I am asking people to enlighten themselves & ensure information is credible. It may be forgotten quickly but the damage it does is not.

      • Teresa says:

        That’s what I’m advocating also, and urge these “kids” to do a quick google photo search to validate, or invalidate, what they’re posting. All it takes is a right-click.

      • Lynn says:

        Sadly it is not just kids. There are many so-called intelligent adults participating as actively as kids.

  2. What? This is a shocking perspective. I get all my best misinformation and distorted pie charts from Facebook.

  3. It’s so easy to get sucked in thinking you’ll contribute to “fixing” but instead, I’m afraid, there are those that don’t seek enlightenment but just take things at face value looking no deeper. What’s in front of them is sometimes all they can absorb, logical or not. Sadly, this seems to be the norm anymore……the mad dash to post on social media having no scruples or interest in facts. Blah. I’m with you…..see you at the gym!

  4. joannesisco says:

    I deliberately don’t engage in the 40 layers of crap on FB. Unless it’s intended to make me laugh – yes, I admit I love baby goat and cat videos – I don’t even give it a glance.

    I learned a long time ago that the people most likely to post outrageous and inflammatory comments aren’t really interested in the facts. They like sounds bites, cling to them as the complete and untarnished truth, and cannot have a reasonable discussion of the shades of gray without resorting to insults.

    I’ll save my breath.

  5. Deb Patrick says:

    Ah, the age of meme and link wars posing as information and intelligent discourse. Infuriates me on a regular basis. This past week has been particularly horrible and polarized. The number of people who engage their keyboard before their brains is astounding. My cardinal rule is google first, share second, always. You know that I never shy away from a discussion of the day’s topics, but I have to admit…there are some people’s posts that I just scroll on past, because the time spent trying to get them to see they’ve perpetuated false data is just not worth the energy. But often I WILL take the time to go find the facts to support my own position, and post them on my own page 😉

    • Lynn says:

      I respect you for that Deb. I would encourage anyone to follow your practice. I would further add that depending on what the source is on google, it can have a very one-sided view on a topic that is multi-layered. Clicking on one view does not make us an expert on anything.

      I have read a number of your threads & appreciate that you present informative dialogue, challenging readers to have a voice, but at the same time, willing to acknowledge if you or they have been misinformed.

      Thank you so much for taking the time to express your view today. It is always welcome & appreciated!

      • Deb Patrick says:

        Absolutely. One ALWAYS has to look at multiple links on the same source to really get a balanced picture. The internet, and search engines, are great tools, but only if used intelligently. Often people just look as far as the first link to support whatever they’re currently thinking and call it “doing their homework”. If one’s “backup facts” are the opinions on a blog that three people follow…then, um, no, I don’t feel that’s enough research. This is particularly common in political topics. I’ll only put the time in if it’s an issue I personally feel strongly about. Because it DOES take more than a one-click look to really research an issue. And if you haven’t got the time to do that…well, then just move on!

  6. Uncle Spike says:

    Too many keyboards and smartphones are attached to too few brain cells basically.

  7. Sue Slaght says:

    Oh I have fallen into this crevasse more than once. Now I try to take a deep breath and move along, as painful as it can be sometimes. Yes not worth the high blood pressure.

  8. Ingrid says:

    Well said Lynn. I roll my eyes routinely on some of the things I see posted on FB. “You can’t fix stupid” is a regular saying around our household 🙂

  9. Kiri says:

    There is so much misinformation floating around out there and people seem to have forgotten how to think critically and check the sources. I try to make sure that anything I do repost related to news has come from a reputable source and I read quite an extensive article this week on how major news outlets go about trying to verify stories and photos that originate on social media. I notice some people posting things that diametrically oppose the position they supposedly supported last week! I try to pick my battles though….

  10. restlessjo says:

    Not worth wasting your valuable life! I only use Social media to like and spread love. They can keep the rest. Take good care, Lynn. 🙂

  11. Well said Lynn. I couldn’t agree more. Pundits (and investors) have called FB a seachange, but honestly, I think most people know better. It does what it does well, but disseminating reliable information isn’t one of them. Like Joanne, I like duck and goat videos as much as the next guy, but if I want information, I don’t go to FB. ~James

    • Lynn says:

      It shocks me James. People who I know are intelligent & yet they post & share things without consideration for the source from which they found it or the credibility of the information. I shall not make this mistake again! Thanks for your support James, it’s good to know I am not the only one who feels this way!

      • Deb Patrick says:

        I think the big issue with this is that although James is correct…it isn’t a reliable prime information source…there is an entire generation out there under 40 who use it more often than not as just that. I saw a lot of that during the last election. If we as the “elders”, who still remember life before the internet and having to really look for accurate information, do not reinforce critical thinking on social media by interjecting some reality and fact-checking, I fear we will turn the world over to a bunch of meme-passing sheep without the ability to assess fact from spin. Whether we like it or not, social media is here to stay, and it is up to us as users to enshrine some credibility and be willing to state that the king is wearing no clothes once in a while…even if we have to say it and walk away with figurative tomatoes being hurled at our heads. There is always the silent watchers who hear you…even if they don’t always say so…and that matters.

  12. LB says:

    Oh Lynn, the same thing happened to me a week ago, and I have been evaluating my FB presence ever since. I too, have worried that people are not doing their homework but are just sharing without really knowing the story. Frankly, it scares me.
    So what have I done about it?
    For the last week, I have only posted about my favorite college football team! 🙂
    So don’t be trash talking my Hokies!
    Too bad we can’t sit, glass (or two) of wine in hand, to discuss!

    • Lynn says:

      Good thing I am not a football fan. If I am being honest, I don’t even know what a hokie is, except for in the song.

      ” Do the Hokie Pokie and you turn yourself around.” Oh wait, that’s hokey pokey. See, I know nothing!

      Sharing some wine would be lovely indeed. Perhaps some day our paths will cross!

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