Friday, May 13, 2011

Why all the Negativity in Social Media!

I love social media platforms. Twitter. Fun! Flickr. Applause! Facebook. Yay! The only drawback is people who use it to spout such negativity on to other people.

It is no secret that I love watching NASCAR races. And Twitter plays a big part in the enjoyment of the races. So many people are tweeting what the drivers and crew are saying and sharing more information than you can get through tv. There are several drivers who are also on Twitter and interact with the fans which is an added bonus.

But there is a certain breed of people on these platforms that use it to spew negativity.

Focusing on NASCAR here, there are some people that find it easy to attack the drivers, media and other fans with such ease that it is scary. I wonder if they do it only because of the anonymity to a degree that comes with social media. Would these same people say what they write if they had the chance to have a face to face conversation with that person? There is a way to get your message across without getting personal or vicious.

Now I have mentioned my dislike for a driver on Twitter before but not directly to the driver and certainly not attacking them -- more in conversation with another tweep and only what I would say if I were there with that person in the same room.

I imagine the hatefulness gets to these drivers/spouses/media enough that they want to react. I've noticed a trend with some of them that they will retweet a hateful comment that they recieved and this encourages their followers to attack the tweeter. It happened tonight.

Someone attacked the spouse of a driver and she retweeted it with a response. It wasn't a bad response but it was enough to rile her fans. She didn't encourage her followers to attack this person but that is what happened. Yes what he said was uncalled for but it didn't warrant what he got. It could have easily been handled by the spouse responding to this person directly or just ignoring him.

You have to have a thick skin to be a celebrity or someone involved with a famous person. Always remember this: DO NOT FEED THE TROLLS.

There is one driver who actually encourages this kind of attack on people who tweet negativity to him. He's retweeted before with "go get 'em" on the retweet. Is that really necessary?

And it's not limited to NASCAR. A while back one of my tweeps made a comment about her thoughts on breastfeeding in public and within the hour there was an organized effort by a group of women to verbally attack her. It was vicious. She responded to them and it just got ugly. My mouth was dropped the entire time I was reading this.

Don't get me started on Facebook and the need for someone to attack their ex-spouse or family in a public forum.

Sometimes I want to just scream or tell someone something awful in reply - when that happens I write the tweet then delete it without sending it. It works for me. Try it.

Here's another idea: if someone attacks you or is hateful-- BLOCK THEM and go on with your life. No one needs to put up with that. It's enough to discourage people from joining these platforms.

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