Misinformation, Social Media & Viralization:
The Flag and The Parade
Hey, did you hear about the Merdeka Day celebration incompetence?
Well my friend’s cousin’s uncle’s brother’s niece posted that the parade messed up and the flag was inverted?!
Say it ain’t so…
And I know it’s true because, aside all the people who shared that one post on Facebook, this other guy, who has like 10k followers on Twitter, also tweeted the same thing and like, errbody retweeted it.
I mean come on, it was Merdeka Day guys, couldn’t we have at least gotten this right?
Oh wait, hold on a sec:
“PETALING JAYA: Social media users learned something new Sunday about the Malaysian flag and the proper protocol required when displaying it during parades.
Pictures of the Malaysian flag being “inverted” during the National Day parade Monday surfaced on Facebook, drawing many ill-informed comments.
The picture was making its rounds on Facebook, with users mocking the patriotism of the parade.”
So yea. That’s right. They did it correctly.
That’s how it’s been done for only the last 58 years
(I’m assuming that we’ve had 58 Merdeka day celebrations with a flag bearing parade, so don’t take my word for it).
So, yea, erm,
Kinda shows how many people have either never watched or never paid attention to some of the 58 Merdeka day celebrations we’ve had.
It shows how quick people share something that conforms with or confirms their bias irrespective of the source, leading to the viralness of misinformation.
I don’t know which is worse-
wait, no I do: both are bad, but the latter is worse.
So today’s segment is:
“Hey, I’m going share this because it confirms my viewpoint and to hell with verifying It cause other people are saying it and /or sharing it too, so it must be right.”
Today’s example is just one of the few in what I’ve come to expect from the beautiful mediums that are Twitter, Facebook and the rest of the social media pantheon. Whether it’s due to jumping on the bandwagon in order to not feel left out, or attention seeking tendency or wanting validation through likes, shares, etc, or simply for #AdRevenue.
Social Media is probably the quickest way to spread information (irrespective of how true, accurate or plausible) and as news media outlets have learnt:
The more sensational,
The better the engagement,
I mean, who cares about verification right?
And well, Sensationalism sells.
In this world of views, clicks, tweets, retweets, shares, hashtags, pins, posts & blogs fighting for short (and growing shorter apparently) attention span of people in all the (growing) business of life today, some to get some of that almighty #AdRevenue…
I may have drifted off point for a bit there, I’ll talk about sensationalism another time, I’m sure you got the point in relevance to this topic.
So yea, back to #Misinformation.
Hey, maybe open a new tab and Google that thing you wanna share, retweet, paste on your car or whatever before you actually do. Just a little verification from all of us can go a long way to minimizing viralizing misinformation.
Now, this isn’t a bash on things going Viral or Viralism…
The ability to connect with more people is great and I love it,
I can’t count the number of times a viral video of post has cheered me up or given me a good laugh or taught me a thing or two but with a tool with the power for people to share information quicker and easier than ever before, it comes with great responsibility.
Yea, I paraphrased Uncle Ben.
Today’s featured photo was taken during one of my work sessions at #greyskymorning last week.
Ciao guys and remember,
Roshan ‘Arkay’ Kanesan