Let’s stop cyber bullying – or at least make a significant dent in it!
Today is about cyber bullying and a way that I think could help t decrease it. This is going to entirely depend on all of you. A lot of times we ask ourselves “What can I do?” How can one person really make a difference?” – Well when it comes to cyber bullying, yes, you can make a difference, especially with the way that some of our social media works today.
Social media is like a parasite or virus – it feeds on interaction. Let’s say you have the flu, if you stay home and drink fluids, sleep and keep to yourself, you will get better and the virus is gone – done! BUT, if you go out and cough without covering your mouth, sneeze on doorknobs and breath all of your sick germs over your friends, they will get it and it will spread. Well, social media is the same. The more you interact with that nasty post, the more people who see it and the more it spreads.
So here is a quick social media lesson for you – using Facebook as an example.
Have you noticed on Facebook that there are some people you know that post a lot, but you never see their posts in your newsfeed? Well, this is because of an algorithm that Facebook uses – if your post gets no love (shares, comments or likes) Facebook is like “hmmmm..no one really cares about what this person is saying, we’re not going to show this anyone”, so no one is going to see it. If it gets lots of interaction, negative or positive, Facebook is like “hey this is popular, let’s show it to ALL of this persons friends!” If I post something on my Facebook page and no one comments, shares or comments – not too many people are ever going to see it. But, if I post this amazing recipe (whisper voice…sometimes they are pretty good, BTW) and you comment on it, someone else shares it and a lot of people like it, then Facebook is going to share that with a ton of people.
So what does this mean and how can you help stop cyber bullying. Well…we are never going to stop bullying completely, but we can help silence it a bit – make it a bit quieter. Here is what I am asking you all to do – if you see a mean, nasty or inappropriate post – reject it! Completely and totally reject it. Don’t like, share and especially do not comment on it! I know you may want to defend the victim and I totally applaud you for that – but don’t do it through social media – that will only give it strength. Did you mom ever tell you when someone was picking on you, if you ignore them they will get bored and go away (mine did) – same with Facebook – if you ignore it and don’t engage – less people will see it.
Don’t get me wrong – we cannot ignore bullying – cyber or in person – bullying is not okay, it is VERY serious and needs to be dealt with swiftly and firmly. However, what we can do is not fuel the means to which the bullying is taking place.
So let’s not feed the parasite – let’s isolate it, reject it and let it dissolve into oblivion.
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