Is Social Responsibility Part of Social Media?

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Recently, there have been many op-ed pieces about social responsibility. Facebook allows political ads from practically anyone. Twitter has said that they won’t post political ads. And Pinterest points people to the CDC and WHO when they search for anti-vaxxer content. Who’s right? And what is a social media platform’s responsibility? By the way, you might like this article: Why Pinterest Isn’t Social Media and Why it is.

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The First Amendment

People are very concerned about the First Amendment. And I agree that we remove people’s right to free speech. After all, free speech is what makes this country strong. And shouldn’t everyone have a right to voice their opinion? But what about when people are unduly influenced because those with fake news have more money and political sway than others? Is there some way to level the playing field so those who are loudest don’t have too much sway?

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Political Ads

Is it part of a reader’s responsibility to sort out lies in political ads? Facebook now says that it’s not their responsibility. And yet…we clearly know that the last election was influenced by Facebook ads. Read this New York Times opinion piece: Should Facebook Allow False Political Ads?┬áThe author believes the problem is that most people don’t read. In fact, studies show that many Americans don’t read past the 8th grade level, and that we’re in a literacy crisis. Being on social media, I’d tend to agree. Read the comments on any article or Facebook post, and you’ll see mangled sentences and bad grammar.

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Anti-Science Ideas

Are we all allowed to go around saying things that are nonsense? If I want to say that water is purple and the sky is green, how do people know what’s true and how to check? After all, some people seem to believe anything that’s on the internet. Just check out all the scams going around. As I write this, there’s one scam saying that Costco is giving away $75 coupons for free. Not everyone will go to and check it out.

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How Much Responsibility is Enough?

Scammers and hackers are getting more sophisticated. And more and more of our personal data is being given away for free. Shouldn’t social media platforms have at least some responsibility to point out what is true and what is fake? Maybe a warning of some sort that the source material has not been vetted.

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What Do You Think?

Should there be a free-for-all in terms of what people can and can’t say on the Internet, even if others get hurt by their words? Leave me a comment! And thank you.

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