Believe it or not, there was a time when social media was actually spectacular. Even before Facebook came in and took the alpha role as ideal social media platform, we had MySpace. And while people may want to make fun of MySpace now, the fact is, it was not the shit-show, snuff reel spectacle that Facebook or Twitter is at all. Truth is, it was new and was a gimmick and people truly enjoyed that, in a pure fashion, when it first appeared. Sharing funny cat videos and sneezing pandas. It was a place a mirth and joy, where your reach was suddenly 100,000 miles longer than it had ever been before. You could connect with those you lost touch with. You could meet interesting folks. Hell, if you were as good at it as me, you could even bang a few D-list celebrities as a result of it. But now, to go on social media at all (especially “the Book of Face”) you find yourself inundated with political agendas (by the way, apparently any politician someone doesn’t like is now “Hitler”. Pretty sure we can thank social media for that, too) and videos of beaten dogs and cop shootings. On top of that, it has summoned a lynch mentality in people and we need to stifle this quickly before people take to the streets to tar and feather those they disagree with.
We are on the doorstep of some scary shit, people, but I believe we still have the power to change it before it’s too late. But I can’t do it alone, I need your help.
The Beginning of the End
In the beginning, it was fun. You can try to tell some people that now about Facebook or social media in general and they will think you a liar, but it’s true. It used to be pure. The world was once closed off, and overnight, it opened up via social media platforms. Suddenly, you could talk to people you hadn't seen in years. You could represent yourself with your social media account, and it felt like the birth of a new way to live (and it was).
At first, it was just people writing messages and sharing stupid, fun, mindless stuff. “Here, look at this video of a grape stomping lady who falls and emits some woeful moans much to the pleasure of her co-workers.”
Yes, twas a bit cruel to laugh at that but that was as dark as it got at the time. That is what we shared at first. It was actually FUN to login and see what kind of stuff would have you laughing that day. But this was also when it started getting weird. You see, over time, because OUR Facebook was about us, we all got creepily narcissistic and self-righteous. What was once platform for debates and discussions and varying viewpoints slowly devolved into the classic “I’m right and you are wrong”, every single time.
And don’t even get me started on the….
Okay, to make things very clear. Sharing a video of someone getting killed, burnt, or beaten and shot on social media is sharing snuff. For those who don’t know what a snuff film is, it was thought to be an urban legend for a long time. Videos of people getting killed and tortured that others would watch WILLINGLY. Here, a 8MM film Charlie Sheen received one day on his doorstep that he brought to FBI because he thought it was snuff. Relax, all here is fake, but this is to make a point:
I, myself, love horror films and have NO ISSUE with the video above because I know it is make believe in every way. That actress is very much still alive and has all her limbs. But, what about the videos everyone seems to share with abandon that show cops shootings kids in the back, or two people fighting until one is unconscious and having their face beaten to raw hamburger? How is THAT not snuff? It IS, yet NO ONE SEEMS TO HAVE ANY PROBLEM SHARING IT BECAUSE….
The Birth of the Entitled, Enraged Person
These people (as in MOST PEOPLE ON SOCIAL MEDIA) are now MAD AT EVERYTHING and think yelling about it or sharing snuff will somehow change it. No, that is the most disgustingly passive way to try to change anything. Think of all the fucking causes social media has rallied against. Well, we had monsato for a few months. Then, when that got boring to people it was that Kony guy. After then it was the hilarious “Vaccines will give your kids autism”, and now it’s, what, flat earth theory? Now let me ask you all. What has your week long outrage above any of the above issues done for said cause? Say it with me people:
We rant and rage and light torches on fire and start marching towards Frankenstein's castle, only to get there and be distracted by something else. We have become passive, pouty, loud-mouthed pussies, and there is nothing worse than a dog that is all bark and no bite, which is what we have become.
Yet, the scariest thing of all about how social media is ruining lives is…
The Resurrection of The Lynch Mob
Now some people may say this is bullshit, but it isn’t. Cops are getting shot down now, and if you think this is not social media related, you are blind to the facts. Social media is slowly stoking fires that are dividing this world in any way they can. From the slew of constant bad cop press to the incessant need to draw race lines in the sand (that we did a great job of whittling down right before social media showed up) and you can see, social media is resurrecting a lynch mentality. For those who don’t know what a lynch mob is, it is a very bad thing that should never have existed, yet it did, and we seem to be rebirthing it, via our computers.
What people don’t seem to understand is….
Why So Serious?
Social media is just as good or as shitty as WE make it, so why don’t we stop making it so negative and shitty? It really is THAT simple. It reflects US!
And ask yourselves, where is all the constant outrage coming from? Why is everyone who once shared kitten videos now so mad at the way of the world, as if it is brand new or something? It isn’t. The world has always been fucked up and broken and bloody and driven by the wrong things. The fine print here is, social media crams those very things in our faces day after day, constantly, and we perpetuate it by sharing it and sharing it and sharing it. It is a mental onslaught, and it is bringing out the worst in almost all of us.
It almost feels like social media wants to bring about some sort of civil war in this country (be it driven by race or by social and economic standing) and that is some scary, prehistoric thinking that will do us all in.
So let’s just cut the shit and save it while we still can. It is in OUR hands, after all.
How about, just for a moment, we remember what we liked about social media in the first place and bring that energy back around? You see, the sneezing panda was so much more than just a baby panda that sneezed and scared it’s hungry Mom. Sneezing panda represented the last time the web reflected humanity and purity. It harkens back to a simpler time, just a few years back, when social media was not like Fox news.
I, for one, am bringing Panda back. You motherf*ckers don’t know how to act...
Boom. now chill out, get off your high horse, and start making social media less about rage and snuff and more about a place we came to ESCAPE those exact things.
Remy Carreiro is the rarest Pokemon of all. No one can catch him, not even child services.
Follow me on social media (Twitter and Facebook) or he will go all Babadook on you.