I decided to write this article on a special request from my wife. As I was editing an article, she was lying on the bed near me reading about a famous wife’s personality in the world. She was actually very shocked that media depicted this lady as a devil without mentioning her wonderful accomplishments.
“Darling, can you write an article on the power of social media to explain to people how media make them hear only what they want you to know”. I was first reluctant because I wanted her to write the article herself but later I decided to work on it.
If I ask you the question: “How did you know about the last American elections?”, whether you were in the US or not, you will probably answer “through a media”. After Trump was elected president, a professional of communication in Kampala told me that she was aware of President Trump’s actions as if he was his neighbor.
The above example illustrates clearly the importance of media in our society today: Bringing real information as close as possible to the public. But if information is wrongly manipulated due to political, sociocultural or business egocentrism, social media become a bad tool.
Before you swallow anything from social media, particularly your favorite website or TV program, make sure you scan the information the following way:
- Make sure the media has no political or socio-cultural discrimination.
- Verify the information on other reliable media channels.
- If you know someone living in the area where an event is taking place, ask the person about real facts.
- Look for lives news, event or webinar.
- Don’t trust every videos and pictures on social media. New technologies enable their manipulation in a very dangerous way.
- Read blogs to know about people and connect directly with them.
These simple actions could prevent you from living in a utopic world with a lot of prejudices about people, societies, and cultures. They could also make you an active participant on social media when you provide real-time information on a situation.
I would like to know how you scan information on social media to have accurate news in your community and across the globe.