Boomers, when you joined social media, Millennials thought “what’s the worst that can happen?” And then somehow you elected a white supremacist. So, we think it’s about time we sat your generation down and gave you a few tips so you don’t do that again.
Our generation grew up with the Internet, so we’ve had some experience that allows us to navigate social media without creating a constitutional crisis. We received 6 chain letters a day on MySpace. We went through Kony 2012. We’ve been arguing about the pronunciation of GIF since we were able to pronounce a hard “G.” So here are some things we’ve learned that we hope can help:
Everyone and everything is lying to you.
The internet is one big lie. It was specifically made to give liars the platform to lie to more people. If you think someone’s telling the truth online, then you’re lying to yourself. Did Obama cancel God? Are severed feet washing up on the Canadian shore? Did (insert celebrity here) die in a car orgy? Just fucking use Snopes. They’re doing the lord’s work to tell you whether or not kids can say “lord” in school anymore. The first email ever sent was Bill Gates lying to Steve Jobs about how big his boat is. Is that true? No! This is the internet, it’s a lie.
Thinking about taking a dick pic or a snatch snap? Just be prepared for it to be made public, to everyone. Whether you’re hacked or just accidentally hit “Reply All,” that intimate photo probably will get out there. So, make sure you at least use some decent lighting. Your identity, credit card information, and social security numbers are also already public, and there’s nothing you can do because stores don't give a fuck about protecting the data they're collecting from you. It's just something to keep that in mind the next time you’re going on about how great the Home Depot is
If it looks like shit, it is shit.
Design can tell you a lot about the legitimacy of what you’re looking at. If a website looks shitty and has a bunch of ads on it for fat burning diet pills, the article’s probably bullshit. If someone’s newsfeed looks like they covered themselves in glue and just rolled around in a street filled with racist pamphlets they’re probably a Russian bot.
If you’re thinking about purchasing something that uses the word “toxins” you might as well just Venmo your money to a Nigerian prince…OK, Venmo is this PayPal like thing, you know what? We’ll circle back to that. Our bodies process toxins naturally, why else do you think our livers get pissed when we drink? Foot patches that turn black do so because it’s an easy way to get money from stupid people, not because toxins sink to our feet. You might as well be saying it’ll improve your midichlorian count. Midichlorians are a prequel thing, you know what? We just don’t have enough time.
Keep your comments to no one.
The comments section on any social post is where your friends' circle gets to meet the most extreme, unintelligible, and asinine fringe groups on the planet. Fun right? As you scroll through the comments you’ll quickly find that a post about urban beekeeping will devolve into a shouting match between people using all caps to insinuate that someone’s “too Hitler,” or “not Hitler enough.” Don’t read them. Don’t add to them. And if you do, be prepared to get some sludge thrown on you that’s impossible to get out of cotton.
Just don’t share stuff.
Everything you share gives an algorithm personal information about your behavior that helps a company sell you discounted underwear. People really don’t need to know that you and your spouse love each other, they don’t care what feelings you have about politics, or that you think music is good. The only thing that sharing a photo of the last meal you ate is good for is to brag that you have a taco in your belly. Take that Karen from 9th-grade social studies, I eat bomb tacos. It’s been proven that the more you share about how happy you are on social media, the less happy you actually are, so just don’t do it. Actually, forget I said all this and go ahead and share this article!