The other day in Church our Vicar gave a sermon that reminded me of the opposite of what's been happening in my inbox / chat / messenger recently.
I – and probably most of you – have been deluged with people spreading Fake News about hackers gaining control of your Facebook profile if you accepted their friend request.
Thankfully this has died down now, but it was irritating while it lasted.
How To Counteract Fake News
Are you, like me, heartily sick of this fake (and very outdated) news?
In desperation, I have just resorted to sending a message asking everyone who sends me something like this to check their source on Snopes.com before spreading fake news.
I like to respond to all messages I receive, so time wasted checking all of these, and even sending my “Do pack this in” message, are all time wasted when I could be doing something productive.
How Does This Relate To The Church Sermon?
The sermon today was about the parable of the sower.
The Vicar decided that sowing seeds (the Word) wasn't particularly relevant to modern day Harrow Weald, so he “sowed” sweets – throwing them about the Church.
- Some sweets fell where they couldn't be reached, and may lay there forgotten for months
- Some were immediately grabbed and eaten (instant gratification and a sugar rush, but no long term benefit)
- But his hope was that some who caught the sweets would be inspired to buy “sweets” themselves to hand out to friends and neighbours – spreading the good news of what the vicar had done that morning, and how the Church today probably differs from some memories
That's obviously an example of spreading good news. But some seem determined to spread bad, or fake, news.
What To Spread Instead Of Fake News?
We live in a world where it's so easy to spread “news” with the push of a button.
Why harness this power to spread FUD? Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt. I'm not trying to promote some “head in the clouds” attitude that ignores all that's wrong in the world, but if you must promote bad news, please be sure it's true first.
Better still, let's spread good news instead of fake news.
BrainyQuotes is one place where I can find uplifting and thought-provoking images.
Another of my favorite sites is SilverSurfers. When they post on Facebook it's usually sharing a happy image to make me smile, or remind me of a happy memory.
There's enough misery in the world today. Let's for goodness sake use the power of the Internet to spread knowledge, love, caring and happiness.
I'm reminded of my Nan's wise words to me when I was a child:If you can't say anything kind or positive, don't say anything at all. Click To Tweet
Thou Shalt Not Spam My Inbox Either!
This is NOT an invitation to spam everyone in your chat or in-box with your latest “great thing”. Quite the opposite. These “amazing businesses” usually fall into the category of “One Man's Meat Is Another Man's Poison”.
And….Whatever you do, don't call me 'Dear' as your first contact! Click To Tweet
In my (admittedly cynical) experience “Hello Dear”, from a stranger, is usually followed up with a spam link, request to buy something, or even occasionally a declaration that we will spend the rest of our lives together. (Honestly, it has happened more than once!)
Instead of spamming people's in-box with links and misery, there is a better way….
Internet Marketing Bootcamp
I don't mean to be disrespectful by applying Biblical teachings to Business in the modern world, but the Parable of The Sower also reminded me of my post last week about my learn Internet marketing weekend away, where so much information about learning marketing online was shared.
- Some are still convinced it's all a scam
- Others came away fired up by the free training given out, and started their business. But life got in the way and they will soon give up
- Some (like me!) are still plodding on, slow but stubborn, applying new knowledge gained
- Some, like the speakers at the conference, have already “made it” and are sharing their knowledge to those who are prepared to learn
Which group do you fall into?