Will Facebook use decrease because of off-line consequences?
Social media is still very new and society has not created
any rules for it. That is “social” rules as opposed to legal
ones. Anybody just does anything that comes to mind, without
thinking twice. This has already had some serious
Consequences like people
deliberately slandering others, or unwillingly being sued over
seemingly innocent remarks and photos. Some examples
- 8% of US
companies have fired people because of their remarks on
Facebook or Twitter.
- In the US in 1
out of 5 divorces spouses use online comments against the
- People have been
banned from airports for their online remarks.
- Several law suits
have already been filed against people for slander against a
product or company.
With more and more
stories like this appearing in the media, people will close of
their remarks from the world, only allowing a small group of
friends to read them, or they will shy away from social media
all together. People might also turn more and more to the
practice of using social media to stay up to date, without
publishing anything themselves, thus diminishing the effect of
this media. As the practice of suing people is more common in
the US, this might well mean that social media may become more
popular outside the cradle of the Internet.
With social media
people need to go through a period of learning. We have learned
how to behave in social interactions during childhood. However
when we engage in social media nobody tells us how to behave and
we have to learn this the hard way and often that is really the
hard way. What most likely will happen is that the off-line
reactions to social media use will result in a smaller but more
structural use of social media with the creation of the same
social rules as in off-line society.
Are you brave enough to keep publishing on social media?