Think twice before deciding that you’re going to destroy someone on social media

I’ve seen a load of campaigning on Twitter the last few days – against individuals who are simply other Twitter users. Screenshotting, requests to block/unfollow, and not so subtle requests to “call out” (AKA viciously attack) people.
Please give this article a read first.

Here is adult entertainer (or porn actress if you prefer) August Ames, making a tweet that a lot of people thought was homophobic. Was it? I honestly don’t know. All I know is that many people wasted no time in telling her what they thought.
A lot of tweets are now gone. But you can get the gist of what was going on from her own responses. You can also see, if you visit her timeline, the very real misery she was feeling at the ensuing pile on. She killed herself two days later…

There is a *human being* on the other side of these exchanges. I know the lack of ability to see them makes it feel less personal, but they’re there and what you say really effects them. Always keep that in mind.

If your target is a leader, politician, a pundit/campaign leader, a news organization, a mogul, (someone with actual power over you in other words) then fire at will. That’s an act of self defense in the social media age. But If it’s just some random Twitter schmo like you or I, please think twice before deciding that you’re going to destroy them. To do so is not an act of defense but an act of vengeful hatred. Consider also, the effect it will have on you.

Ranting at people, screaming at them, and encouraging others to do the same does not change minds. In fact it does the opposite. So don’t pretend the reason for the attacks is to help people see the error of their ways. And if you’re eager to not only discard people but encourage others to discard them, even *demand* others discard them, you should really reassess whether or not this social media thing is for you – this is childish, insecure and paradoxically narcissistic, it’s deeply unhealthy.

An old thread on dealing with Twitter. People feeling “attacked” should really try to grasp that I’ve been trying to stop people doing this crap for a while. It’s just not good for any of you.

Author: Mike @Geoelte_Spinne.

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