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The social media and its double edged sword

03 September 2012, 12:01

The truth is there are hardly ever any good or potent tools which haven’t got the hazardous side. The social media is one of such I can boldly say that as potent it is; the other side could leave a bitter pill in one’s mouth. It is just like the knife which could be said to be so useful but can also turn out to be mean when you mistakenly use it on your own self.

It’s funny how we just kind of let loose our guards to people who we have no iota of idea about what they really are all in the name of meeting them via one social network or another. We tend to always forget that some are there to take advantage of others, pry into their privacies and for several other wrong reasons.

The story of Cynthia Osokugo the late daughter of a retired General who met a young man via social media and eventually got killed by the same man just in the name of forcefully stealing from her leaves more to be imagined, and as usual the whole story has generated so much heat. I’ve taken time to read the story as told by the culprit and reading the reactions that followed suit, I can’t but say that we are just so quick to judge people for the same ‘sins’ we are equally guilty of.

How many people can say that they have been meticulous about their identity or who they relate with on social networks? No matter how careful you try to be, once you are on any social media platform, there are some people who by virtue of sharing common friends with, can easily intrude into your privacy. This is where the danger lies because by default a part of you is revealed to someone you practically do not know.

Not to say that all there is about the social media is all harm and not good...NO. The social media is one which could easily be used to disseminate information and get it moving faster than the speed of light. The Arab spring sprung up speedily by virtue of the social media. News update flows faster and a lot of enlightenments are growing via this same media. The government of Nigeria have not only come to recognise but accept the social media as a potent tool which is capable of getting the attention of almost everyone at a go.

Really looking at the pros and cons, we can easily say that what we need is being conscious of the harm that could be embedded in this seemingly inviting platform just the same way we utilise its good traits. The same way we tell children never to trust strangers is the way adults also need to be reminded that there are strangers you meets as friends via the social network and like the strangers they really are, should never be trusted.

What we need is a conscious effort to ensure we carefully use this platform in ensuring it continually delivers only its good attributes; that way we will not end up being victims of circumstance all in the name of social media. 

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