There are times when I log into social media, Twitter specifically, and scroll through my timeline that I see tweets that I think can’t possibly be real. By real I mean that it’s either fake news or some sort of joke/parody account. Of course parody accounts are usually self-described as just that, others that promote what turns out to be fake or incorrect information, seem to be less noticeable and some of those tweets will go viral in a short time without anyone bothering to verify the content before retweeting (remember the Covington Catholic School debacle a few months ago?). So, I attempt to not retweet those that aren’t verifiable from more than one trusted source.
I admit openly I didn’t always use discretion. I learned the hard way, embarrassingly, to wait for some sort of confirmation before piling on in any way. The easiest thing to do is look at the persons profile, but also scroll through their timeline to discover if what is being tweeted is serious or not, and also to see if other tweets by that account has a lot of unverifiable content. I think that’s one of the reasons so much nonsense occurs on Twitter. People are just too lazy to take a minute or two to determine what is real and what isn’t. If what is being said fits a narrative someone believes, then it’s easy to retweet without the slightest regret because it’s more important to be morally correct, than factually correct (where have I read that before?). Which brings me to the following tweet in my timeline:
When I first read this, I of course laughed. It isn’t serious, or is it? I took a couple of minutes to discover that this was not, in fact, serious, but I thought how smart it was because it’s exactly what I’ve heard other people say, and have read on Twitter. Out of the 335 retweets, I wonder how many thought this was serious, or even agreed with it? Hopefully, none, but today it’s almost impossible to tell whether or not anyone actually believes in something so laughable. All any of us have to do is keep up with current events. We can’t know how anyone else will react to anything we tweet, or post on other social media platforms, but we should attempt to be responsible before proliferating those stories or tweets, that can’t be authenticated.