We were just talking about the documentary on Netflix called the Social Dilemma. and it remind me the words of a famous PR and political consultant back home called Miguel Marti.
About 15 years ago, there were no issues with social media, and I was full-on working with brands on Facebook, Twitter, and remember Vine? Yeah, that was the same as TikTok. Own by twitter, ahead of their time, there were not enough people using their phones as they do today. (I guess that was the reason for their doom).
Around that time, I had the chance to hear a Marti talking about the impact and implications of social media in politics. Many could see the potential at that time, today we all know the huge implications caused by misinformation, but still, today, just a few lawmakers understand the issue and much less are willing to take action.
Marti, from a sociology angle, pointed out that the “public” as a group has the emotional intelligence comparable of that of a teenager. I found that so very interesting and stuck with me since then. It seems like the last time we had something in common with each was the high school years 🤷
But that is one of the reasons most of what you see in social media is characteristic of someone from middle and high school. Popularity serves the “pretty” or the funny or the smart or the weird. The odd, the misfits, the alienated find each other with a platform… and the Warhol 1`5min of fame became with the power of a phone and a $25 selfie lamp, nowadays and 15sec of spotlight. And just like having a job in high school, these social platforms figured how to monetize FOMO x PG13 screen time from these individuals.
But the other side of the coin is the importance the platforms have gained into users minds. Just like the soul ripping drama we all had to lived through school.
Social media effoects are real. They can hurt or inspire you. But just like your life in high school, I think it’s because, at the stage we are, you don’t know any better (as group at least). At this stage, anyone is more vulnerable to influence.
There is no doubt there are always going to be high-schooler social groups. As long people are needy and have an internet connection, social media will figure how to monetize from immature-minded fears and aspirations. Some entertaining, some selling misinformation in exchange for the spotlight.
But the same way we leave high school behind. The good, the bad, and the ugly, the only way to deal with social media is to put it where it should, regulate it accordingly, outgrow it, and move on.
Private companies making money out of user generated content is not freedom of speech, and it’s a business. You create the content they provided the platform.
So, just like any other industry, we need rules to protect the vulnerable, or the misinformed, just like we do with food, banking, healthcare. Like any other platform, outlet or source of information that came before, it needs to be accountable and regulated.
As well as spoke about it at home and in schools as well. We need to learn to be responsible and accountable of the content we create as well.
I’m not claiming to be an expert on the subject, but itfeels like having teenagers at home, the parents need to address the issue and take action. Even if the kids don’t like it; It’s for their own good 😎