Facebook: think before you post

Emma-Rose Floyd, News Editor

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Facebook is one of the most recognizable social media sites these days. They have continued to improve their site over the years, but not all changes have been for the better. While the vast amount of features make socializing with friends easier, it always makes it easier for users to overshare and put negative messages out there they might regret later.
Facebook’s purpose is to provide a way for people to interact with others they don’t get to see often, catch up with friends and share pivotal moments in your life with others. The purpose is not to bash another person’s beliefs or lifestyles, and not to complain about little inconveniences that happened throughout the day.
Many people use the site to chronicle every single event that happens in their day, which is both unnecessary and unwanted by others. One of the best things about Facebook is that you can add new people that you meet and get to know more about them through their profiles. However, people are now using their walls as an outlet to complain about the driver ahead of them or their annoying coworker. This is not considerate to the person you are publicly bashing. Even if you are not “friends” with them, your complaint can still spread. Facebook makes it entirely too easy to post hateful, callous things online for everyone to see, and in return Facebook “friends” may judge you based on the remarks, rants and complaints posted online for all to see.
Part of the reason why people feel so comfortable with “journaling” their every thought on Facebook is the “What’s on your mind?” text in the status bar. Facebook is inviting people to use the site almost as a diary. Inviting people to literally share everything that is on their mind could hurt and upset many users and change people’s perceptions of you and your character.
Another reason, and one that everyone should be well aware of by now, is that everything posted on Facebook, can stick around forever. Even if an account is “private”, pictures and other posts can still pop up on Google and other search engines. Future employers could also potentially see past things that have been posted. Even if you feel protected by your private setting, and that makes you feel empowered to write or share certain things on your wall, everyone, even people you do not know, can get a sense of what you are like throughout your status updates. If people have, for your whole life, thought about you in a certain way, just one angry status or spiteful share of a political article can change their whole perception of who you are as a person.
In conclusion, to prevent people from posting things in a moment of intense emotion, Facebook should have a word or post limit. They should also do away with the “what’s on your mind?” message and the emojis. These things encourage people to literally write down everything that is on their mind, and in the confusion of high emotions, they decide to share their rants and, in the process, reveal things about their character and self control to their hundreds of friends. Some of these “friends” might just be acquaintances that haven’t fully made up their minds about this person, but they may decide upon their character because of that one post, which may not reflect upon who they are in person, at all.
Even if Facebook gets a post limit or makes you re-read your status, you should take it upon yourself to make the decision to post it, and ask yourself if your post will do more harm than good.

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