Editorial: Think, Before You Post

Social Media. Many people think it is a forum to post your opinion or whatever is on your mind and get lots of likes or to show that the poster is outspoken. To some extent, it is just that, but there are many who need to think about what the real end results are of their posts.
In an article on today’s front page, the Latta Town Administrator said that instead of people bashing the town on social media, they should take pride in their town and come to a meeting, where all council members are present in person, and present their concerns. At Dillon City Council meetings, the negative public perception of Dillon out on the internet has been widely discussed.
We all want our municipalities and our county to grow and thrive. We have been presented with a unique opportunity with the inland port to finally get the kinds of industries and businesses and the economic boost that many in the county have long-desired.
However, what do potential new industries think when they see our municipalities being bashed or our county being bashed by its own citizens on social media and elsewhere on the internet?
They may well think that they should locate somewhere else in a community that has enough pride not to bring down itself. It makes Dillon County a tougher sell to people who know nothing about us except what they have seen on a social media page or elsewhere on the internet.
So the next time, you see a “supposed” ranking or poll that has something to negative to say about the community like we’re the worst place to live, etc., then pass it by or better yet, post something positive about why they are wrong. Certainly, don’t share it and cause it to spread across the internet. Most people don’t realize that the ultimate goal of these posts is to get you and the people you share it with to their website and expose you to advertising. Many of these polls or rankings are not even based on truth or only have a shred of fact in them. However, we as a community validate them when we share them and comment on them.
Before you post a negative comment about your community, call a public official and talk it over. Better yet, attend a council meeting, and let the council know your concerns.
Also, remember, you are responsible for what you post. If you defame someone or say something that isn’t true, you can be held liable for those comments.
The next time, you get ready to post, think about this: Is you negative comment really worth losing an industry or a business who may be thinking of locating here? Is this how I really want to portray my community? Is the damage I am going to do worth 50 or however many likes?
In most cases, the answer is probably not. Most people don’t even consider the wide-reaching impact their negative post can have. You are urged: Think, before you post.

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