The good and bad of living your life online.

We all do it… we all live our lives online. No matter what is happening to us social media and posting your life online is what 99% of us do. But is this such a good idea? Depending on you who ask they answer will obviously vary.

But for me two stories that come up this week show the positive and negative effects of the need to share your world with others.

The first is a good story. You may or may not have heard about the Father who disowned his Daughter, who disowned her Son because he was gay. (http://shine.yahoo.com/parenting/father-disowns-homophobic-daughter-in-epic-letter-230436549.html)

This is an example of someone posting this letter online because it was a positive experience for the young man. He or someone he knows, wanted to share it with others who were in the same situation and say “you’re not as alone as you think.”

Then it takes off and it becomes this warm and fuzzy story that we all love to read.

My second story is the not so nice side of the internet. Actually it is just downright mean. A young women posted a picture of herself online dressed a Lara Croft from Tomb Raider for Halloween. (http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/when-embarrassing-facebook-photos-go-viral–a-cautionary-tale-205506194.html?.tsrc=telkomsel) Someone somewhere in the world decided to share it with and the mean comments rolled.
She decided to track down the online bullies who made horrible comments about her weight to confront them via email. The bullies were more surprised that she could find them, but never apologized for the hurtful things that they said.
A simple picture from Halloween sparks mean and hurtful comments about her weight from absolute strangers. Now think about your Facebook, what pictures do you have up that could be judged? Or what supportive letter could you write to someone that could make their day and lift their spirits when they need it the most? That they could post online to show their friends that they’re really are a few good people left in the world.
These are things that we have to think about everyday now as living online becomes more and more prevalent in our lives. The things we say and the pictures we post are being looked at by the people we know and people we don’t. Ever show a friend someone else’s social media site? The same is being done to you and me as I type this.
As our online community evolves we must evolve with it. We have to be smarter and safer with the things we post because we are being watched and unfortunately judged. I’m not saying cancel everything and stay as far away from social media and the internet as you possibly can. But use your best caution before you hit send.
 

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