Thursday, 27 October 2011

Facebook and Wikipedia: Cut from the same Cloth

Welcome back to another week of Let’s Talk IMC. This week is all about why, like Wikipedia, you should always confirm some of the things you see on Facebook with a more reliable source. If you don’t it may come back to haunt you in the future.

This week in my Writing for Marketing Communications is a perfect example of why this is an important thing to do. Our teacher for the course, Frank Armstrong, has been expecting his wife to go into labor for the past week and had informed students that classes could be canceled at any moment and that students could expect an email or a post on Blackboard for confirmation on when they would be cancelled.

So when Tuesday’s 12:30 class rolled around there were only three students and Frank present wondering where everyone was. The answer came while I was looking at the class Facebook page and noticed that there was a post saying class was cancelled. I quickly jumped into action by posting that class was not cancelled and class was about to start. The few lucky students that caught the post on time managed to make it to class almost on time.

This is a great example on the effect Facebook has on society. With a few keystrokes we can affect millions of people. One incorrect post can lead an entire class into believing a class to be cancelled. On a more substantial scale it could lead to an entire community believing a innocent man committed a crime he never committed like in the case of Triz Jefferies.

The lesson here is very similar to the one that your teachers tell you about Wikipedia. Anyone can go in and post something, but it doesn’t make it true. Beware of what might be false information and if you are unsure just check with a source that is reliable. Whether it is by accident or intentional, it effects people’s lives. Until next week everyone. Happy Halloween.   

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