Social Media’s Golden Rule

In  Michael Hyatt’s recent book Platform: Getting Noticed in a Noisy World he says: “For all practical purposes, privacy is dead. Via Google, people can find out more about you in ten minutes than was possible in a lifetime ten years ago. You might as well intelligently feed the Google search engines with what you want people to know about you. You need to be smart about it, but you are in control.”

Given this reality, Kevin de Young provides excellent guidance for using social media. The golden rule is: “Assume that everyone, everywhere will read what you write and see what you post.

de Young suggests two rules for Christians that flow out of this:

  1. “you represent Christ in a real way even if it is in the virtual world. Most people will know that you go to church, what church you go to, and that you claim to be a Christian. So let’s all think before we post. If we go by the name of “little Christ” we ought to be careful to show a little more Christ.
  2. “if you need to be critical … write in such a way that you would not be embarrassed to have the object of your criticism read it with his mother nearby. This doesn’t mean we have to be lily-livered or call for the nice police every time a Christians disagrees strongly with some other person or idea. It means we should be humane and remember we are writing about other humans.”

Read the whole article! It should help clarify how permanent your Internet activity can be, and consequently, the importance of being mindful of your digital footprint. “Remember, the web that gives you access to the world allows for worldwide access to you.”

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