Is Facebook becoming Toxic?

This is the very question that I have had on repeat for a while, but it’s been flashing in neon since the debacle which was the EU Referendum. (*shudders* just saying that phrase again…)

I’ve known for some time that I have an addiction to social media; It’s the last thing I will check at night, and the first thing I will check when I wake up (albeit through 1 eye!). I belong to a tonne of parenting groups from all over the world, follow my favourite bloggers, and have my chosen news channels on my ‘news feed’. All ready to bring the latest from the big wide world to my social media platform of choice. Behold The Facebook.
More importantly on Facebook are my friends, friends I have made at all different stages of my life, all clumped together sharing their highs and lows via Likes, Comments and statuses. When Facebook is good, it’s very very good: think wedding photo stalking, school reunion pages, birth announcements, holiday snaps, you know the drill. But when it’s bad its damn right Toxic.
We know SO much about other people’s lives, like it or not. And I LOVE it. I’m nosey by nature, being a fly on the wall through people’s lives is a bit of a dream come true; Thank you Mark Zuckerberg!!
But there is a dark side to Facebook;

A world where opinions and statements are banded around all safely behind the shield of a computer screen. Things are said which would never be said face to face. A screen is a buffer protecting those keyboard warriors. And yes, I am one of them – but learning the hard way to hold my… fingers.
I have seen families torn apart and friendship groups divide over a snide comment here, a controversial article share there, an outright offensive status elsewhere. And let me tell you I have seen some SHOCKERS. Some proper laundry airing shizzle, and we all have a front row ticket.
Facebook can be Toxic, and we play right into its hands.
It’s the perfect vehicle for making others feel uncomfortable, not least because it’s so public. The ‘fishing’ statuses are the ones that really get me. Those statuses which are implying that someone on facebook is responsible for their plight, but they don’t have the guts to confront them so instead issue a ‘Woe is me’ status. A call to arms for those paranoid friends to comment as quickly as their iphones will allow, sending sympathy. Is it sympathy or some sort of paranoid knee jerk reaction though?
It sort of goes a bit like this:
{Infill attention-seeking DULL ‘they are all bi*ches, my life sucks’ type status here}

Cue concerned / guilty ‘friend’ (delete as appropriate)
“This status can’t be about ME…??”

*5 secs later*
“Hmmmm, maybe this is all about ME?…”
*5 secs more – scanning memory*
“I don’t remember pissing her/ him off (let’s face it, it’s almost always a her) ”
*decision time*
“I better comment to keep face and show solidarity” *mentally thumps chest and high fives The Fisher.*
Urgh.
The medal for the most toxic place I have ever come across on Facebook has to go to our town’s ‘Notice board’ page. Does any other town have these?! If you are unsure what I’m referring to, let me enlighten you: The Notice Board was originally set up for people to post about events happening in the town, or enquiries about clubs – you know the sort of thing.
But Enter at your Peril. It is so abusive that if you were to join this group prior to moving to our quiet seaside town you would almost certainly reconsider. It takes good old fashioned slagging to a whole new level. I have seen people be quite literally destroyed publicly on this page. There is always someone ready pounce putting a controversial spin on even the most boring of enquiries. The EU referendum saw it turn into a battleground of Ins V’s Outs. A daily slagging between the 2 sides, only pausing to sleep and reload on the insults that were being banded around so vindictively. *Cringe*
It’s sad that it is becoming the underbelly of our society. Seemingly bringing out the worst in people, all packaged up with a neat little blue logo. As my wonderful friend over at Bean Musing  says,
“There is freedom of speech, and then there is being a tw*t” Nail.on.head. (Go check out her blog!)
Do you know what though, despite ALL of that, I can’t bring myself to delete my account. YET. At the moment the pro’s of keeping in touch with friends, family and the world at large outweigh those cons.

But only just… I guess I’ll just have to suck it up.
I’d love to know if I’m the only one that has a love / hate relationship with Facebook?

Best of Worst

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

Have you decided?

Have you ever taken part in a game of Tug-of-war? You know, the really rough kind, heels dug deep, desperately trying to pull the other team over to your side, at any cost… No? Me neither, rope burn isn’t my thing. However I do feel like I have complimentary front row tickets to the virtual Tug of war game to end all games: The EU Referendum.

Trying to get to grips and keep up to date with the latest scaremongering is a full time job. D-Cam’s latest has been to liken a Brexit outcome to putting a bomb under the British economy; that’s bloody scary, let’s be honest. We’ve been there done that just a few years back. I really don’t fancy seeing another P45 in our family. Turn the page and we see our floppy haired plummy friend claiming that actually a Brexit outcome would contribute an extra £2.4 billion a year to our economy… Maybe D-Cam was talking about a sparkly glitter bomb full of £50 notes going off under the economy then.

Untangling the web of words between the two camps has been harder than untangling my daughter’s hair on swimming night: Frustrating and time consuming, requiring a saint like amount of patience.

How does the girl next door make an educated decision on this? How do I, as a parent, make a decision that I can stand by; If, when my girls reach their 20’s and can’t get a job, unable to get onto the housing ladder and England has its begging bowl out, Greek style, I want to at least say I did try and foresee this shit storm. I voted for what I felt was the best option. I didn’t abstain, I didn’t glaze over when the conversation turned to the EU Referendum (chances of that in the playground are pretty slim yes I know…) I got amongst it and had my say!

I have simply decided to focus on which of the many issues raised by the big wigs would have the biggest impact on our family: and for us, that’s money. We don’t have much of it, and can’t really afford to risk shit hitting a sodding great British Isles sized fan.

So my vote will be to remain. * holds breath, hands over ears*

Risking my little girls childhoods being blighted by another recession is not an option for me– that’s the reason our first is here! We love to travel throughout Europe – well, go on a week’s holiday once a year, so not exactly throughout…but the ease of no visas, the reciprocal free healthcare and the promise of  tariff free mobile phone calls being rolled out later this year is good news for those who love a bit of Eurocamp.

Let’s be honest, do we really know enough about how those campaigning for OUT really plan to plug the drain of international businesses sodding off to one of the more attractive Single Market countries (jargon I picked up… you like?!). The pound has been at its most turbulent as the OUT campaign gathers pace, evidence this circus is already pissing on our parade.  I don’t believe that they would actually shore up the NHS with funds is desperately needs if the cool weekly sum of £350 mill was suddenly available, there would be some other need, some other trade agreement to fork out for. It’s like being a parent: at last your Toddlermonster qualifies for their 15 hours free nursery sessions after you have been paying for it for a year. Oh lovely, I think, that £120 I was paying out per month can now go towards Christmas. Christmas comes, money’s been spent on new tyres, replacing broken school shoes and a vet bill. Shit happens. Totally comparable scenarios right?!

 

Get involved, have you say, and VOTE. At least you will have earned the right to moan about the outcome if you do.

For the official IN campaign click HERE

For information from the Government’s official EU Referendum site click HERE

I couldn’t find an official BREXIT website so I have copied a few for you HERE and HERE