Do Facebook and Twitter really make us bad? There was an article in the Metro on April 13th that says it does… According to London’s free paper:
‘Fast-paced modern media, such as Facebook updates and news feeds on Twitter, do not give us time to reflect and could make us indifferent to human suffering, according to a group of researchers.’
I also recall an article, around the same time, that suggested the same, after a landlady saw video posting of her flat being trashed by the tenants – the implication being what? That without the advent of the internet and video streaming, the party would never have happened?!
I think it is worth reminding ourselves that people come in good, bad and indifferent flavours and that each and every medium can be used to demonstrate or enhance those traits.
Twestival would be a clear case in point and cmash and the case studies hosted here are testimony to the fact that social media can, and does create and contribute real and measurable social good, in ways and with reach that would have historically taken obscene ad budgets and mountains of precious trees for snail direct mail.
Covered in the Guardian, there is clear and compelling evidence that people can, will and want to use new social mediums for good, the success of Twestival being clear. The Guardian writes:
The team’s (behind Twestival) 10-page guide on how to hold a Twestival has inspired Twitterers in every continent, franchising the charity event.
Volunteers have found venues, offered design services, put together maps and found drink sponsors for all 175 official Twestivals. There is even a Live Aid-style Twestival radio project called Twestival FM which aims to raise $200,000 through donations for music downloads from artists including Bloc Party, Erol Alkan and Imogen Heap. See here for full aricle
Surely to suggest that a medium can ‘make us bad’ is nonsense? And yet, perhaps those of us in the world of social media should simply see the accusation as a compliment, being one that has been levied for years at television for years?…