Tag: Facebook

Opinion Overload

Information overload is a term we hear often these days. It is easy to acquire information about just about anything you might want to know. I am among the thousands who do this practically every day. Although I love books and have a lot of them, I don’t find it necessary to buy a book on every subject I am interested in. If I want to know something, I just google it.

256px-Twitter_blue_bird_icon.svgI have noticed another trend, though, that is somewhat disturbing. The information we acquire after a search doesn’t always come from someone who really knows something about the subject. Many chats, forums, videos and blogs are filled with no more than someone’s opinion – often unsubstantiated. Information passed on through Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media sites can take off like wildfire, but really have no facts attached to the remarks. Even main television news programs ask for the public to respond with a tweet about just any topic that is presented on the program with a “we want to know what you think” attached to the request.

I do want to know what others think about many subjects, but I am selective in the ones I give credibility to. If I goggle a subject, I often find various responses – sometimes polar opposites. If it is something totally out of my field, I might research the person giving the comment and then make a judgment based on whether I believe the person knows what he is talking about or not.

In other cases, the comments through my own social media sites may hold more credibility to me because I personally know the person. If she is someone I know well and have learned to trust, that holds a lot of 256px-Youtube_icon.svgweight with me.

Just because something is in print does not mean it contains truth. It is wise to check it out.

The Bible has been tested time and again and proven true. The living Word, Jesus Christ, is truth incarnate. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (John 1:1). In His prayer to the Father on behalf of His followers, He prayed we would be purified by His truth. Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth (John 17:17).

God, who spoke through His Son and His word, is the only source I can always count on – and so can you.

Twitter, Facebook and Blogging: Thinking Out Loud on the Internet

I do a lot of research using Wikipedia or websites specific to the topic I am interested in. If I want a personal perspective, though, I check out the blogs. I appreciate those who are willing to share their expertise in a field. Some of the blogs I follow have to do with writing.  The publishing world is changing so fast that the best way to keep up with it is to read an expert’s blog on what happened in the industry yesterday or even today.

I view life from a Christian perspective, so I also research the people posting the blogs. That doesn’t mean I only read blogs posted by Christians. It means I evaluate what I read by their experience in their field, and take their spiritual state into account as well.

If you follow the news, as I do, you know you should be careful what you post on Twitter, Facebook or your blog. What you say reveals who you are. Politicians and other public figures have discovered that posts are definitely not private: “your sins will find you out.”

The tools the internet provides has allowed me to feel connected even though I am not in one place for very long. On Facebook, I might discover a relative has been in the hospital, a friend I haven’t seen for a long time has a birthday, another friend had a death in the family or another one needs prayer.  In an instant, I can send an appropriate comment.

Blogs give bloggers an opportunity for even more individual expression than Twitter and Facebook since the words are limited only by the blogger’s desire.  I follow one person who intentionally writes a 1000 word blog every Thursday. Others are of various lengths, but research has revealed that most readers quickly scan a blog, so one of no more than 500 words has more of a chance of being read.  Short paragraphs, breaking up text with bullets, and using proper font make it easier to read. If there are no comments on your blog, don’t despair. Experts say over 90% of readers don’t leave a comment.

One blog I follow is a daily blog on prayer. My friend who writes the blog told me, “This is really hard. I am always thinking about what needs to go in my devotional on prayer.” Well, honestly, how cool is that? His thoughts are always on the subject of prayer.

The internet has given us the opportunity to think out loud in front of a worldwide audience. What we think eventually comes out in what we say, and for those who are in our real world (not just our world), they know what we think shows us in our actions as well.

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 (Philippians 4:8 ESV).