As a 53 year old, it is exciting, challenging and fun to keep up with the new media that has burst upon us the last couple of years through the internet. It has opened up a needed outlet that allows us to research and express our ideas in a very wide and expansive forum as the makers of the 1st amendment could have never imagined. As a daily user of Facebook, it has given me a new and expeditious way to share thoughts, feelings and ideas to my friends in an instantaneous way I never thought possible. If I am going to a movie, restaurant, a stage show or considering patronizing a local merchant I can instantly bring up reviews from not only professional reviewers but from the general public with lightning speed to assist in my decision making.
This is great, but as I discuss with my family, do NOT always take what you read as the truth in the media. My first sense of this came about a year ago when I was having lunch with a friend who happens to own a retail business. He has been in business for 16 years and has worked hard to build his business up and now to maintain it through the difficult financial waters that many in retail are experiencing right now. He complained to me that had taken a hit due to one particular competitor utilizing the internet to give less than glowing reviews of his products and services under a pseudonym purely in an attempt to drive customers to his business. Until then, I had not given much consideration to the possibility of manipulation of the new media in this manner or to this extreme.
I write this because during much of the current campaign for school board, I have never seen lies and all around mean spirited attacks on candidates and individuals in the 20 years I have followed and participated in local politics. I enjoy reading and participating in debate, disagreement and lively discussion over an array of subjects that effect our great city but there has always been an level of decorum and respect that people gave each other.
I encourage those who have been deleted or censored to consider their comments prior to hitting the enter button, I do want to read what you have to say, just say it in a way that allows you to express yourself fully without defaming and insulting others.
Editor’s Note – CC Crossroads is pleased to maintain a civilized level of discourse- Of course, we have spam filters that help a lot.