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What You Can Do About 'The Social Dilemma'

I restarted my Netflix subscription so I could watch The Social Dilemma. After researching the effects of social media myself, I was really curious to hear the perspective of people who worked within the industry. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one shocked but not surprised.

As the credits roll, the contributors offer ways for us to get unhooked, such as disabling the notifications on your phone.

Renee DiResta offers a suggestion that can help us be more discerning about what we post and share — “do your research.” This requires looking deeper into how and what we post.

Anyone with a digital device and Internet connection can publish content. Our intention to communicate with the public could have an honest or inspiring purpose. Our posts could shed light on something that has hidden in darkness. Some posts might promote our business interests. Still others might be to simply encourage others or build community. What sometimes happens is that those who have a gross distortion of reality find community and validation on social media.

Unfounded claims and debunked conspiracies didn’t start with social media, but their flawed arguments find kindling in these communities. However, we can address these unsubstantiated claims with a quality argument of our own. In my 20-year career as an educator, I’ve tried to address my students’ flawed logic and common assumptions. I will come across a line that reads something like this:

Many people don’t use Facebook anymore, so I don’t see how it can be such a problem.

Let’s use this as an example of how we can become more responsible with what we choose to post and share.

Question your own argument