It’s comical and entertaining to watch our grandparents and even our parents use social media. It’s a great source to keep everyone connected, especially when the distance is a factor, or just to see each other’s day to day life. But sometimes we witness elderly people make drastic mistakes, comments, and shares on Facebook that make us cringe. Here’s a how-to guide for those over 40 who may need a little do’s and do not guide.
1. Some things aren’t worth posting
Have you ever seen the adults who have to share absolutely everything they do in the day? “Just took the dog out for a run!” “Going to water the plants.” “Kids should be home from school in an hour.”
That’s great, we love that you’re doing something in your life, but please, no one really cares that much. Update people on big milestones or fun stories that are relatable to everyone. You’ll get much more feedback on those posts, and even more likes.
2. DON’T send private messages with chain mail
For the love of all that is good, no one, and I mean no one, wants to receive something such as “An Angel has blessed you with 10 years of good luck, send to 10 friends to let them know how much of a blessing they are.” Yes, very sweet, great intentions, but no one actually wants to receive messages like that. It’s just taking up people’s inboxes and time.
3. You don’t have to copy and paste everything
There are all sorts of causes and organizations and diseases to support fighting for. In fact, there are millions. But, we do not need to copy and paste about these on our walls a million times per day. It’s unnecessary. Instead, share a story about a certain cause and how it affects you. It’ll be more meaningful than simply copying a generic message and pasting for all to scroll past.
4. Not every gathering needs a picture
This goes for everyone. Sometimes we need to remember to enjoy the moment when we catch up with an old friend for coffee. It’s great to document these moments and get a picture to capture it, but we don’t need to rush to post it so everyone knows your every move. Chances are, they’re probably not really waiting for that post.
5. Don’t get into arguments through comments
Sometimes you won’t agree with a person’s comment. And that’s okay. And sometimes it’s appropriate to tell someone that they’re out of line. But just because you don’t agree with something does not mean that you need to make sure everyone knows. Conversations on social media should be treated like conversations in real life. You can’t use the ability to hide behind a computer screen as a shield to boost your confidence in being brave.
6. Remember that social media is meant for positivity
Yes, our generation and the world we lived in is based on technology and the power of social media. But it’s not always a negative thing. It may consume people’s time a vast amount than other things but think of all of the positive outcomes. You can connect with friends, keep in touch with others at the click of a button, and practically see the world. It’s not all bad, I promise.
The next time your Great-Aunt Mary decides to embarrass you on her posts through social media, maybe give her a couple of these tips as a reference. Sometimes the elderly need a little educating as well.