This week alone has made the most intelligent of people seem really, really naive. I may have wanted to say something instead of naive, but let’s just stick with naive. Today we are going to talk about common myths of social media.
A myth is a widely held false belief or idea.
Social media is full of them. Here’s the knowledge you need right now.
- Facebook does not charge, will not charge, and writing a statement telling them not to charge is not going to change that fact.
- Facebook is finally working on a dislike button, but it will be free. That means it will not cost anything. We don’t pay to like things, we won’t pay to dislike them either.
- If you take a photo and post it on Facebook, it’s yours. It’s not Facebook’s, and they can’t do anything with it. The only exception to that rule is if the photo is vulgar or profane in any way.
- No matter how good they look online, photos posted to social media are going to be low resolution and oftentimes do very little good printed. There is no point in even trying to make this work. It won’t. Leave photos from social media exactly where they are — on social media.
- Social media can track you, no matter where you are. The truth of this statement is that anytime you use a computer or computing device, you can be tracked. Check-ins on Facebook are not automatic, they are user-initiated. Smartphones are enabled with tracking devices, but those are the phones, not the actual social media apps.
- Businesses only use social media to stalk their customers. Not quite. Social media is a form of marketing. Businesses use social media to gain more customers. And believe it or not, Facebook protects the regular folks from business scams. In order to get their messages seen by actual potential customers, legitimate companies have to pay for advertising on Facebook…and it isn’t cheap.
- Facebook is full of teenagers. It really isn’t. According to a recent article in Adweek magazine, the majority of Facebook users are between the ages of 18 and 44. Thirteen – seventeen year olds are using Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube. If you using social media to keep tabs on your teen, Facebook won’t tell you anything.
- Social media is full of gossip. Well, that statement might be true. But, it is also riddled with untruth. Leading news outlets now use social media to report the news. And the American Press reports that 88 percent of Millennials — those born between the early 1980s and 2000 — get their news from social media. Not celebrity news, not random news, but real, legitimate news that their parents are getting from the major television networks.
- Social media is not a science. That’s probably one of the biggest misconceptions out there. Social media is a science that is governed by metrics and statistics for the digital world we live in. There are people behind the science, but to understand social media is to understand how the networks are connected to the world — through data and scientific measures.
While this list is a good start, I’m sure we may uncover some more this month.
Have you seen or heard any social media myths that are worth sharing?
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