LISTEN UP: Heed the Advice on Social Media from... THE MEDIA
The elephant in the room has to be addressed… and it's a huge elephant.
It's going to take a minute to unpack this issue but stay with me.
Parents, teachers, principals and coaches preach the perils of social media. Kids are tired of hearing the lecture, I get it. But if you are ever going to listen to anyone… listen to the MEDIA.
It's a learning curve. Over the past several years, it's seems like teens have learned to not self-sabotage themselves on front-facing social media platforms. What that means is that all of the stupid stuff kids want to show off is on their PRIVATE STORIES and ACCOUNTS and DIRECT MESSAGES. It's not for everyone to see, but it can still be screen-shot. Duhhhhh.
This isn't just for athletes, but for cheerleaders, band, theatre, dance teams – it cross-cuts every part of the high school food chain.
College kids, you know better, so you are on your own.
Unfortunately for some premier athletes in our area, they have learned the hard way. But there are thousands of others who have felt the wrath, who are not as high profile.
First things first -- kids are kids. I get that also, but you have TO DO RIGHT. You are the face of the PROGRAM – a QB on the No. 1 team; a District MVP and a DI-commit. You have so much to lose.
We aren't going into the details because it's all been well-documented.
Here's the new life we live in. Everything you say or do when a camera phone is in the vicinity – can be Snapchatted, Tweeted, InstaStoried or Tik-Tocked. It's like having an ESPN or TMZ camera in your face all the time. After a game, in the locker room at a party, in your car – all the time.
Do you understand that? Read that again and let that sink in…
People are looking for followers, people like to stir the pot, people are looking to bring others down. KNOW YOUR SURROUNDINGS. You better know who's around you and what their agendas are… and that is virtually impossible.
I'm all about pranks. I'm kind of that person – a jokester. But I'm old and know where the LINE is. You don't.
I love a little smack-talking too, but it's a double-edged sword. You don't know when ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.
So, what is the answer?
Don't be that GUY or GIRL. The best defense from being brought down by social media is DOING THE RIGHT THING, ALL THE TIME.
It's so simple.
If you are going to act like an idiot, think twice, because everyone is watching. When you or someone else clicks send, you better be ready for the onslaught of social media trolls because it's coming 10-fold. You've opened yourself up for truths and lies of the mediasphere.
Save yourself and take my advice.