Recently, someone I care about learned some VeryImportantNews in 140 characters or less. I suspect it was accidental and careless (though as I write this, I have no way of knowing).
My first glimpse of VeryImportantNews was seen on Facebook.
Not long ago, someone I’ve never met–but was trying to help–used the perceived anonymity of her keyboard to say some damaging things. A few years ago, someone I knew well used his perceived anonymity to do the same thing. In both cases I took action. For the first, blocking the person was sufficient, though I’ve also chosen to distance myself considerably from the group. For the second, a ridiculous amount of documentation and potential legal action was required. In both cases, to be honest, it’s hard not to wonder or care about what might still be said. We do that to ourselves–give people power over our thoughts when they don’t warrant it.
Even so, why is it easy to forget actual people with genuine feelings exist on the other side of the screen?
What can we do to maximize the positive good social media can bring to people’s lives?