We live in a world of instant communication. This can be both a blessing and a curse. For some people, this means that they can use an “attack strategy” to communicate with the world at any given time.
People attack in the comments on Facebook and now even LinkedIn on a regular basis. For some people, the anonymity of the web has lulled them into a false sense of security where they feel free to spew vile and mean-spirited comments. For others, they don’t care if they are anonymous or not, they are content to be nasty on a regular basis.
The consequences of the attack strategy
While this attack strategy may seem fine to you, keep in mind that with the availability of IT tools to employers, you never know when your employer or future employer may be viewing your comments and making a decision about your future. You may be eliminated from promotions or eliminated all together. The new job you really wanted may go to the candidate whose online presence was positive.
Does this mean that you can’t say what you think?
No, it means you should think about what you say and how you say it. You may think that the witty and snarky comment on Facebook in the comment section of the online newspaper, the Facebook page for the television station, or a blog site is fine but you’re only reading it from your point of view.
In this age of instant communication, your comments can be read by almost anyone and sometimes they live on forever. I just looked up an article from 2010 when I saw a familiar name somewhere else and I found the comment stream just as I remembered it back then. If you think about what you say from someone else’s perspective, you may decide to forgo the comment.
Social media networking is a privilege that is new to most people. You don’t know the long term results so I would suggest you be cautious about venting on social media about virtually any topic unless the opinion you are voicing is a total deal-breaker for you.
Even when a topic is important to you, see if you can voice your thoughts in a way that you would if you were having a conversation without using an attack strategy. I wonder how much of the hate I see daily on social media would actually be said to someone’s face. I hope I am right that most people have better judgment.
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