It’s beginning to feel in the world today that whatever you speak up about you will be criticised. A world where we are supposed to be more educated, more aware seems a lot more narrow minded than before. The live and let live attitude is lost under the intense noise of keyboard shouters and newsfeed want to be’s. Sectors of the media saying what it wants without fact checking, it seems asking forgiveness is better than permission.
I truly love that marginalised communities are being heard, not finding their voices, they have always had them but actually being heard. Yet the anger and hate directed towards them is hard to watch ( I’m privileged I know).
I know it’s wishful thinking that the core of who we are is what will be celebrated, that our differences are special, but our hearts, our souls are ultimately the same, one source, one love.
Yet with this wide reaching social media the world seems louder and crueller. The hate that was hidden in shadows is now out in the light, radicalism is greater than ever. Telling people who they should be, what they should believe and how they should look is now classified as freedom of speech, our right. Do we really have a right to be cruel to be destructive, to harm others? Morally and it should be legally not. We don’t have the right to destroy another, to mock, to insult, too troll.
From princes to not princesses the world has an opinion yet under the noise their are people. People that hurt, people that cry, people that die due to the words shared openly and cruelly.
I follow the criteria of “don’t write what you would not say to someone’s face” it’s simple but it’s true. Would I impact another with my words if they stood there in front of me, would I mock their child, would I slander their reputation? Would I openly insult their lives, be racist, be sexist, be cruel if their eyes could see mine?
Let’s be honest I hope I wouldn’t do any of these things anyway but you get the point.
Social media and the news seem to be full of opinions but no facts. It’s crazy that our newspaper articles have not fact checking their sources. Is this true, did this happen, was this the reason? When I studied journalism at college I was told “do not speculate” I wonder if today’s course’s state “write the most explosive story ever and fact check it later”. The amount of lives I’ve seen ruined by guilty by public persecution and the media only for the criminal trial to prove innocent.
Lives ruined by headlines often not true.
Yet why is this still allowed, why do we still read the headlines, why do we still click the links?
What worries me is those being lost in the noise, those whose voices that should be heard . Those making a difference in the lives of others, those in need of help. Lost in the noise of ego, hate and more ego.
How do you change the overflowing tirade of misinformation and false opinion? Should we close ourselves off from the internet, stop writing, stop reading?
I don’t think so, I just feel a two strand approach is needed. Firstly the law does need to change, anyone causing harm, being abusive online should follow the same rules as in real life. If something abused you in real life they would be prosecuted so being behind a keyboard does not make you less destroying.
Secondly I think as a society we need to be holding our media to account. Headlines should be truth not fiction, the law should be holding those in power accountable. I want to read my news and read an unbiased evidenced based truth not speculation.
I just really want change, social media especially has become such a big part of peoples lives, yet if we are going to allow the words of others to impact our perceptions please let those words be truth.
Is this too much to ask?