Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The First Law of Social Networking

There’s an alarming trend racing around the Internet.

Actually, scrap that, this isn’t a trend. It’s been going on for a while and it needs to stop. It’s the fundamental flaw of social networks, human curiosity and gullibility, it is the Patient Zero of panic, hysteria and misinformation.

It is the breaching of the First Law of Social Networks.

Disclaimer: I’m not sure if there is an official set of laws regarding social networks, however, as far as Nate-Radio is concerned, this one needs more publicity.
The Law goes as follows:
Research before you Repost.

And it is a simple premise. It takes five minutes and it saves a lot of bad e-Chinese-whisper-like embarrassment. Here’s how you do it in five simple steps.
1.     Select the text of the article you are about to repost.
2.     Copy (Ctrl + C) the text.
3.     Open a new tab (Ctrl + T) and go to http://ww.google.com/
4.     Paste (Ctrl + V)
5.     Hit your Enter/Return button and browse the first page for the most legitimate looking site.

There are dozens of e-myth busting sites out there, snopes.com are reliable, it will take you literally ten seconds to find out if Ebola causes Zombies, Germans found definitive proof of the afterlife, You can lose fat by eating this one weird ingredient and every other outlandish idea that pops up in your feed. If you cannot find any subject hits for the main headline, try Googling the source of the article. Satire news-sites like The Onion and Viral Update make bank because people are unaware that every story they post is fake. A quick search of their website name will usually let you know if they’re legitimate news-sites or fakes.

Once you have confirmed your story is accurate (and only then) you are free to share, repost, retweet or do whatever it is your chosen network does to repost information. Up until then, don’t. Just don’t.

Please don’t.

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