Social media: One man’s meat is another man’s poison

Civilization is the goal of every generation that takes center stage in life, but like a double-edged sword the enhancement of one aspect of life due to technological advances often leads to the downfall of another factor of life, it’s not always the act of innovation that threatens human life, social or moral standards but the manner in which the innovation is accepted and put to use by society.

Social media has been abused by parties with unfavorable intentions, which include the spreading of propaganda, criminal activity and mostly the slandering of public figures. Celebrities who have suffered social media crucifixion recently include the infamous Molemo “jub jub” Marohanye, President  Jacob Zuma as well as Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille, to mention a few. In a country with such a crude and ruthless sense of humour like South Africa, this often leads to unnecessary media frenzy and ultimately a negative image of South African politics and the South African government at large. What makes matters worse is how political leaders resort to social media slandering to strengthen their political stand and degrade opposing parties. Such actions lead to questionable behavior among leaders and political figures. Without a doubt social media is one of the greatest pushers of information within social circles but this valuable role it plays has been compromised by the circulation of false information that goes as far as announcing false celebrity deaths and bogus events.

Calls have been made to respective organizations to ensure that social networks are used in a manner that does not allow the dignity of anyone to be compromised, nor anyone to be a victim of cyber-criminal activity, but what these protesters overlook is the undeniable fact that social media is an element of technology that precedes human thought and unless humans alter their way of thinking and behaving we cannot delegate the human responsibility to show respect into the hands of lifeless, thoughtless machines, until then will social media be a source of information and a tool of engagement in the hands of the respectful and a dangerous weapon of slander and misdemeanor in the hands of the careless.

Until my next blog………


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