Our social media accounts are one of the best ways to communicate by sharing or exchanging our thoughts not only with our family, friends, and colleagues, but also with the world, thanks to the Internet. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook provide us with updates on what is happening in our world through news and current affairs. They can give us information about food, health and medicine, Science and Technology, History, Geography, etc. We also get first-hand information from people we admire: movie actors and actresses, sports icons, singers, authors and many others. Let’s talk more about Facebook though: this is where we do most of the intercom.
At least 80% of the people I know (including myself) are on Facebook. We check our news sources almost from time to time, depending on our situation, needs or free time. From my personal experience, observation, and other people’s reactions, many times the things we see are not that pleasant or entertaining. They are usually annoying and can make us unhappy. There are a huge number of posts that could annoy us, but let’s focus on what we see day in and day out.
Here are examples of what we commonly see in our news:
- Selfies, the usual selfies that flood your screen
- New personal things like bags, shoes, smartphones, wristwatches, etc.
- Someone has bought a new car or is traveling to where they want to be
- Foods that people eat in a restaurant that are expensive or cheap
- People who just post everything about their children’s achievements in school, sports, music, and the arts.
- Images showing someone’s muscles or physical abilities.
- List of training routines of an individual, food they eat (diet)
- A video or photo of someone at the gym, particularly a mirror selfie.
- A video of someone singing, dancing, or playing any musical instrument
- People pretending to be tough by commenting harsh and unkind words on a public post.
- People portraying godly character by posting Bible verses when they are not what they appear to be.
- Posts that rant about government and politics or a person’s anger and annoyance with something or someone.
- People who simply share and post everything they see on their home page
Some of the examples given are intended to entertain or show our friends and family (whom we don’t see every day) what is going on in our daily lives. However, they tend to show narcissism, pride, audacity, claim, negativity to things and egocentrism. The question is, how and why do we judge people based on what they see in their posts? Some answers are obvious, others are not.
- Studies reveal that too many selfie or self-portrait photos are directly related to narcissism. Why would you even take hundreds of photos of yourself and post them on social media if they only show your face? What else would you like people to see? It’s all your face! What’s so special about it? Okay, you’re pretty, you’re handsome, so what?
- pride It’s normal, but it’s also misunderstood by our Facebook friends, who are our audience. Just be careful with your words and your typical theme.
- Audacity it is what people have when they are simply themselves. It is a product of happiness, confidence, and satisfaction with someone’s life or situation, no matter how easy or difficult.
- We say someone is pretending if we know them personally, we know how they treat other people, or what they have in life in terms of material things they can buy or pay for.
- What do we say about negativity? Of course, we are only human beings, we are never perfect. Who does not get angry, irritated, annoyed or aggravated? Just something that has no life. But don’t make your social media account your live update on your emotional or physical illness. Although, at times, it might help you get sympathy (if that’s what you really need) from your friends and family, it still doesn’t mean you can endlessly post your negativity in any situation. Also, if you really think the government will take notice of you and change its regulation, think again.
- do not be egocentric. If you think that everything you post or share will help everyone, you’re wrong. It will only flood your news feeds. You don’t have to share everything you think is informative or interesting all the time. Just hit the like button or comment on that public post, your friends will see them too.
What do you feel when you receive positive likes or comments?
It’s a great feeling when your friends and family “like” and leave a “comment” on your posts. You feel accepted, appreciated, valued, recognized and even respected. Now find the antonyms of these words as I ask you what happens if your post (which you consider special) is ignored. In this modern world we live in, social media has become an online representation of ourselves.
Why do we get angry?
We assume that the examples given are annoying and may make us feel jealous or skeptical. In my previous article, “Is criticism a good thing?” I have mentioned the reasons why we judge or criticize people.
We have our own reasons for posting such things. In fact, if we think back to when we didn’t have anything powered by technology or the Internet, it seems like we did the same thing. We talk to our friends about anything. We write letters to our loved ones. We share everything that happened to us, including, of course, the things we are proud of. We take pictures, print them and show them to our family and friends. You don’t want to go wrong in your photo, do you? Nothing has changed so much, if anything, it would be in how we claim our freedom of expression, that it is abused and we don’t care about our virtual community that is directly connected to reality. The main difference here is that what we show to our loved ones can also be seen by other people anywhere in the world, depending on the privacy settings of your publication. Think about it, whether on Facebook or not, not everyone you consider to be a friend is really your friend. What else is there if it’s just your online friends? They don’t know you well, so they would misunderstand you most of the time. What makes those posts (which are not intended to offend others) annoying is that we, who are just virtual friends with someone, see things that should only be shown to people who know them personally.
Here is a quote from Francis Collins: “God gave us free will, and we can choose to exercise it in a way that ends up hurting other people.” We were given free will from the day we were born. Let’s choose the best option and live a happy life. Sometimes we just need to consider the result of our actions. We just have to think carefully about how our actions can affect other people and especially our “online community”.