I don’t know if you’ve noticed this, but social media can be ugly.
I’ve been having some deep thoughts on this recently 🙂
Why is it that people say unkind things on their facebook and twitter accounts they would never say to a person’s face? The same thing happens with some blog posts. There is an entire genre of blogs that are strictly about reacting to things that the author doesn’t like. Every post is a diatribe against a particular theologian, celebrity or random person who has somehow made the news.
Recently, a hot subject online is the topic of feminism. People are debating women’s roles in the church. I watched/read as a blog author was ridiculed and openly mocked in conversations on twitter just because he had a different view. It was sad. Why can’t we disagree about ideas without making it personal? Is it unrealistic to think that should happen?
I had a conversation with my husband, Nathan, last night. I noted that the people I “follow” online that I respect the most have not built their platform based on who they disagree with. In fact, I’ve never read a post/tweet by Beth Moore, Michael Hyatt or Ann Voskamp about a particular person they didn’t agree with. I’m sure there are many people with whom they disagree. They choose to not air it publicly.
As Christians in social media, I think we should take a hard look at how we talk about people we don’t like. I’ve seen an interesting trend. So many people are using social media to post “open letters”. I read them with skepticism. It’s not that I disagree with everything they say. It’s just that I wonder if they would actually send a letter to that person in real life? If not, why in the world would they write one and post it on the internet for everyone else to read? Annie has some interesting thoughts on how we treat celebrities.
What have I learned from this? I want to be kind. One of my goals for this year is to be more careful about how I interact on social media. If it’s not kind, I don’t want my name attached. I think that’s a step in the right direction.
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”