Social media’s death of a thousand cuts

The new rules say it is OK to publicly degrade someone based on a political disagreement. It is OK to publicly question a person’s integrity based solely on differing opinions. Apparently, there are extra points for degrading someone who has chosen public service as their vocation.

We inflict upon our neighbors an ancient Chinese torture every time we hit send on a negative post. It is called lingchi, or death by a thousand cuts.

While lingchi was an actual method of slow slicing to cause a lingering death, the phrase “death by a thousand cuts” has come to be known as a lot of small, bad things happening, none of which are fatal themselves, but which add up to a slow and painful demise. (UsingEnglish.com)

That’s what is happening to civility in our culture. It is dying the death of a thousand Facebook posts and tweets.

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Learn to respect your followers and readers

Now I don’t begrudge anyone from making a living. I paid my bills for more than 20 years as a journalist writing for small town newspapers. But in the newsroom you learn to respect your readers … or you learn to do something else.

I was reading a blog post tonight that gave advice on how to approach social media. The post was a listicle with seven rules we just have to know to survive in the big, bad world of Facebook, Twitter and all the rest.

Maybe you can hear the sarcasm in that last sentence.

I didn’t start reading with a bad attitude. That didn’t develop until I noticed the click-bait design of the post. I had to click next for each of the “seven rules,” which were fairly short and would have been much easier to read on a single page.

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5 Rules for Guarding Your Tongue and Keyboard

Now, more than any other time in history, there is a level playing field for the exchange of ideas. The rich and powerful no longer hold a monopoly on communications and publishing.

Social media gives Mr. and Mrs. Everyday Citizen something they’ve never had before: A megaphone.

That’s me! Mr. Everyday! If you are reading this, that’s probably you, as well.

Now, more than any other time in history, there is a level playing field for the exchange of ideas. The rich and powerful no longer hold a monopoly on communications and publishing. Anyone can go viral at any time. Hundreds … thousands … hundreds of thousands could be influenced by our words.

But it seems to me that some people have missed part of the new reality — that with power comes responsibility. We are accountable for what we say and post.

Don’t take my word for it. Read Matthew 12:36-37:

“But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

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4 Easy Rules for Writing Better Posts

Today we are more likely to type than talk, even if we are using our thumbs quite a bit. So we are writing and being judged by our writing. No, not like your old English teacher judged you, but judged just the same.

We are writing more … much more, in fact.

This is an interesting — and counter intuitive — cultural effect caused by social media. While many critics blast the use of constructions like “ur” or “lol,” the truth is that most people not in school rarely wrote at all 10 years ago, the random note to buy more Cheerios notwithstanding. Cards and postcards were simply signed, and personal letters were a rarity. If you wanted to communicate with someone, you picked up a phone … to call … using your voice.

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3 characteristics of leaders and innovators

Those who look ahead and spend at least part of their time projecting the future become leaders in their field. Everyone else is a follower.

The following quote by Wayne Gretzky is one of my favorites when it comes to my job.

“I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.”

It is a simple philosophy that made Gretzky arguably the best hockey player of all time. Everyone else followed the puck, while he got in front of it.Gretzky’s quote is also a great definition for innovation in the marketplace. Those who look ahead and spend at least part of their time projecting the future become leaders in their field. Everyone else is a follower. But it isn’t always easy. Here are three characteristics of leaders and innovators.

1. Work Hard

Being a trend setter isn’t easy — if it was, everyone would be doing it. Leading takes hard work.Consider it this way: Just doing your job takes a full work week. If you want to also become a leader, you are going to have to put in extra hours.It is the simplest, and yet the hardest factor for innovation.In his autobiography, Wayne Gretzky wrote:

“All I wanted to do in the winters was be on the ice. I’d get up in the morning, skate from 7:00 to 8:30, go to school, come home at 3:30, stay on the ice until my mom insisted I come in for dinner, eat in my skates, then go back out until 9:00. On Saturdays and Sundays we’d have huge games, but nighttime became my time. It was a sort of unwritten rule around the neighbourhood that I was to be out there myself or with my dad.”

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The 4 objectives of content in social media marketing

Everybody wants the magic ingredient that will make their social media marketing turn into more customers, more clients and more money.

Everybody wants to find the secret sauce. Everybody wants the magic ingredient that will make their social media marketing turn into more customers, more clients and more money.

But that’s not the way social media marketing works. There is no technique or trick that will instantly give your business thousands of views or generate fan interaction. Instead, there are some fundamental rules for building an audience and converting that audience into customers.

The most basic of these fundamentals is this: Content is King.

Content is the basic building block of all social media. While some social media marketers like to debate the definition of content, I think it is easiest to say content is anything that you share on your social media.

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Sheriff’s Podcast #3

Michael V. Hannigan and Sheriff Botie Hillhouse sat down Wednesday, Feb. 14, and discussed the week in law enforcement in Henderson County.

Michael V. Hannigan and Sheriff Botie Hillhouse sat down Wednesday, Feb. 14, and discussed the week in law enforcement in Henderson County.

1:35 — Weekly arrest and jail statistics
2:35 — Sheriff himself pulls over a car after chamber banquet
4:45 — Most Wanted Felons video success, nearly half apprehended
6:15 — Sheriff’s Office is listening to community tips
7:55 — Dispatch Division generates nearly 5,000 call sheets in January
13:00 — Spotlight on Dispatcher AshLee Mills
14:50 — Dispatch information leads to stabbing suspect

Send your tips to the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office at 903-675-5128 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-545-TIPS.

Be careful what you choose to post and share

I want to share two of my cardinal rules for thriving on social media.

I read a post today about the dangers of Snapchat and a key to the argument was information taken from an almost 4-year-old post by blogger Adam McLane.

In that post, McLane sounds the alarm on some of the problems that plagued Snapchat at the start, mainly its use as a sexting platform.

But Snapchat has grown up since then, something McLane himself pointed out in January 2016.

While being interviewed by an 8th grader about Snapchat,McLane said, “Is your data secure? Yes, it is more secure now than 3-4 years ago. Is it safe for a teenager to use? I suppose that’d be determined by what you were doing with the app, what you were posting, what was being sent to you, etc. I would argue that the vast majority of Snapchat usage at this time is normal social media usage for teenagers.”

McLane continues to warn teens to be careful online — sage advice for all of us — so I want to share two of my cardinal rules for thriving on social media.

Everything Is Public

You must assume that nothing you post on social media is private, no matter what settings you use. The very foundation of this form of electronic communication is sharing — the ability for a piece of content (photo, video, text) to go viral and spin around the world in a heartbeat.

My Rule 1 has always been this: Never post anything on any social media platform that you wouldn’t scream loudly from the top of the courthouse steps with your grandmother standing next to you.

Every time you hit send, you tell the world a little bit about yourself. What is it that you are saying?

Never Share Anything Without Research First

Social media platforms are designed to make sharing easy. With one click, you can amplify any message that you find and we all tend to share messages we already believe.

Unfortunately, that makes it easy to turn social media into an echo chamber. We share what we believe and we ignore what we don’t, until our social media channels do nothing but reinforce our preconceived ideas.

Even if those ideas are wrong.

Rule 2 is this: Never share anything on social media without first completely reading it or watching it and always look to verify the information.

I once saw a well-known bank official share a news story critical of President Obama. I will never forget the “news story” contained a quote from a dolphin.

When you share someone else’s post you are telling the world something about yourself just like when you post something original. Make sure you are saying the right things.

We Are All Creators

Before social media, the world was separated into two groups: People who created content and people who consumed content.

The vast majority of people were content consumers. They watched TV, listened to the radio and read books and newspapers, but they themselves didn’t make videos or write essays for the public.

That has changed. Everyone who posts on social media is now a creator and with that power comes an obligation to post responsibly.

God gave us a guide for what we should think about.

Philippians 4:8 reads: “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”

I can’t think of a better guide for what to post.