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The Negative Impact Of Social Media – Arab Fall

Posted on : 18-09-2012 | By : stargaterich | In : Internet_Marketing

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The power of social networking simply cannot be overstated. Sweeping political changes which took place in the Middle East, particularly Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, events dubbed ‘Arab Spring’ were attributed mainly to the use of online community networking platforms.

Much has been reported on how various opposition parties and factions leverage on the power of Twitter,Facebook and MySpace to organize coordinated massive protests. The Internet was also used to great effectiveness by witnesses and reporters on the ground who report and broadcast live footage of violent government suppression and crackdowns on demonstrators.

The recent uprising of anti USA sentiments sweeping across Africa continent and the Middle East dubbed by some as ‘Arab Fall’ is a stark reminder of how important it is for everyone to be responsible and mindful of what is being uploaded into YouTube. The impact of social media cannot be overlook, it is a double edge sword so to speak. It can be use to establish, destroy or undo all those good deeds you have done.

Despite Google’s stand that the recent controversial video clip (I guess most people have seen that fifteen minute long video clip) is within its user policy and guidelines, nevertheless, innocent lives has been put into harms way. Google owns YouTube thus many expect the search engine company to response decisively to the widespread unrest.

YouTube has received and responded to several government request to block the content from their countries. Nations such as Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Libya, Tunisia and several others are now blocked from access to that particular video clip.

I think Google did the right thing in regards to handling contents deem sensitive by some quarters.  Google can’t just simply remove any video that people complain because if they were to respond to every single complaint, might as well as close YouTube down. One man’s meat is another man’s poison so to speak, thus the onus also lies with the end user to be responsible individual in using community networking services.

No doubt the blame for the recent unfortunate events in Libya cannot be squarely be directed and blamed on that video alone, nevertheless, there is no doubt it allows dangerous elements to exploit or hijack it and create social unrest which then leads to violence and mindless demonstrations.

The advent of the Internet and the prevalent of social media and networking services pose much challenges to the younger generations. A lot people believe what they see online, pretty much without taking efforts to validate the source of the information, the authenticity and the correctness.

Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and YouTube are great networking media platforms to communicate with people all over the world. Social media marketing is very powerful and effective means to expand business,reach out to customers and new prospects.

On the other hand, like most things in life, there is two sides to the same coin so to speak. Generally speaking there is lack of initiatives on the part of parents, teachers and relevant government bodies to educate the younger generations on the negative impact of social media.

The pervasive nature of web makes it easy for perpetrators of all kinds to flourish and target ignorant people. For a start, always keep in mind the saying “if it is too good to be true then most probably it is not true”. It is very difficult to track down cyber criminals.

There some basic precautions that you or your loved ones can take to minimize the danger associated with social media. Avoid stating your real name, contact address or mobile phone number in Facebook and other social media profiles.

Even if there is a need for you to disclose contact particulars, always make sure the personal details are not public, restrict it to close friends and those you know through privacy settings where applicable. It is never too late to teach your children to be on guard against strangers they befriend through the Internet.

Summary

Social media web 2.0 is a powerful medium and effective means to reach  out to the world and more so if you are dealing with online marketing.   It pays  to exercise caution and be on guard against negative influence that might compromise security and safety.

Likewise learn to respect the culture, beliefs and rights of others. Do not post or upload offensive or sensitive audio video clips that could be hijack by others to incite hatred, misunderstanding and other problems. As the saying goes, with great power  comes great responsibility’, don’t do to others you do not wish other do unto you so to speak.

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