1. So traditional media – the media you argue is dying out and is one-way – has all that influence? It brainwashes? The media does not blame social media for society’s ills but it does warn that social media has its own dangers. Isn’t that responsible?

    1. The generation that media has sway over are still influenced to a certain extent. I do think that people are starting to realise that the unrelenting attacks on social media sites and one sided war is actually against THEM. As in, “I have a Facebook page, perhaps they are attacking ME?”. It’s slow though, this general pissing off of the Australian readership…. ๐Ÿ™‚

      and in other news, I see you missed the point: So let me rewrite your comment for you “The media does not blame TELEPHONES for societyโ€™s ills but it does warn that the TELEPHONE has its own dangers. Isnโ€™t that responsible?” Well no, not if you are blaming the tools for the ills, rather than the wielders.

      Did you know that telephones were blamed for society’s ills? particularly the suffrage of women post-war? Hilarious now ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Great post Laurel,

    As a fellow digital specialist, I constantly have to explain the benefits of social media far outweigh the negatives.

    I think as the medium matures the wider community will understand that the platforms are just another form of communication (albiet more efficient, two way and customisable).

    I do agree that people who create these pages etc should be under the same legal scrutiny as would a journalist for a newspaper or a person calling in death threats etc.

    As users of these technologies realise there are real world consequences to their digital actions, the more accepting the general public will be of the medium.

    1. yeah there were similar concerns with email – I used to run email classes in 1995 and one person, an email expert, would print out emails and physically pass them to the recipients. Similar to social media experts today ๐Ÿ™‚ I have no doubt that hideous stuff is passed around on email, but it’s not public in the way we think of publishing online. Society is learning to balance it’s activities with regards to anonymity /unaccountability versus social contracts. It will take some time…

  3. Laurel, it really gets my goat too. We’ve had another spate of anti food blogger articles out recently with a lot of ill informed comment from people who know nothing. I mean, how can AA Gill comment on them if he doesn’t read them?
    The thing that really get’s me what is fast becoming an old media cliche – the death threats of Facebook.

    It is so bloody ridiculous and papers have been littered with those types of stories recently. It’s meaningless.
    The biggest laugh is that the accusation from old media is the stories that are biaised and ill informed that accuse social media of being biaised and ill informed.

  4. A timewaster ?.. i don’t know why on earth i just spent 10 min reading this, when it has absolutely nothing to do me, or anyone I know ? Another example of how social media says we need to be informed & know all these things, but for what purpose ?

  5. A Facebook page is nothing like a phone number. A phone number has no content, whereas a Facebook page does. Most of the time, the content of Facebook pages is good or indifferent, but occasionally it consists of threats or hate speech and that is both newsworthy and a problem in a civil society in which the free circulation of such things is otherwise restricted. Either way, I don’t think your analogy actually works.

    1. Hmmm, a phone line delivers death threats, a postcard delivers death threats, an email delivers death threats and a Facebook delivers death threats. Are Telstra, Australia Post, an ISP and Facebook to blame?

      1. A Facebook page does not “deliver” a threat. It records the threat, articulates the threat, allows people to schedule a time to carry out the threat – all of it in public. It’s completely different. And it *is* a new thing, and it *is* newsworthy, and it *does* need to be called with its own name. I see nothing wrong with the report that you so cleverly manipulated.

  6. You are definitely spot on. I really don’t like it when people start blaming social media for their mistakes, even for violence, hatred, and indifference in the world. These should not have happened if not for the people using them. Nevertheless, the tools some of these people abhor are the same ones that make it easier for the world to send aid to those who are in need. Think of campaigns for Japan aid, for example.

  7. just like a hammer or a screw driver, these things are tools. You can’t blame a hammer for smashing a window…..
    it is the media yeah, they have to write or talk about something don’t they? and these are just hot topics that the society thinks are hip at the moment.
    it bothers me more that comedians still try to make jokes about putting something on facebook or lame twitter jokes.

  8. You cannot blame facebook or twitter for that matter because at the end of the day its us who make things more complicated. Every one has a right to share whatever they want, make some wall post about this and that and tweet whatever they like. Its up to the person if he/she is responsible enough to share something in public whether if its an an important issue or not. Social media is great but up to some extent, I guess some irresponsible people should be blame and not the social media itself.

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