Don’t Believe Everything…

By: Gabriela C. Perez

 

When it comes to social media, everything is not what is seems. I set out to prove this by conducting a little social experiment of my own. Last week, a Harry Potter movie marathon turned into group temporary tattoos. You know the ones, where a little water will help you go from innocent kid to badass in about 20 seconds. The one I chose actually looked kind of real after removing the piece of paper, so I decided to take it a step further. A little bit of plastic wrap and a Snapchat post later, the wheels were in motion as I waited to see if anyone would actually fall for it.

Picture Credit: Snapchat

 

Like they say, if you snap it, they will come.

 

Less than five minutes later, messages started rolling in, most of them saying how much they loved the newest edition to my body. Part of me wanted to tell them it was fake, the other half wanted to wait and see how many people would actually be fooled. I chose the latter decision. By the end of the night, about 12 people had congratulated or asked me about the tattoo.

Despite the fun and games, anyone who TRULY knows me, knows I’m deathly afraid of needles. Like “run out of the room during a doctor’s appointment because it was time for my flu shot” afraid. I’m serious, I hid in the bathroom.

However, this serves as a lesson to not believe everything you see on social media. Most of the time, people are posting what they want you to see, in hopes of making their followers believe that their life is so much more glorious and interesting than it actually is. We’re all guilty of it; posting pictures of videos from the fun-filled Wal-Mart trips, the exotic looking food you just ate, the zoomed-in concert videos. Social media helps us to create this alternate persona and gives us the option to choose what parts of our lives we’re willing to let others see.

What we must remember is to see between the lines and not believe every little thing someone posts about. News has shown us this time and time again. We live in an age where it’s important to fact-check everything. Or get caught in someone else’s fake Snapchat scheme. It’s up to you.

 

Sources:

Davis, Wynne. “Fake Or Real? How To Self-Check The News And Get The Facts.” NPR. NPR, 05 Dec. 2016. Web. 19 Mar. 2017. 

Zolfagharifard, Ellie. “Welcome to Fakebook: More than 75% of people admit to making their lives seem more exciting on social media.” Daily Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 01 Feb. 2016. Web. 19 Mar. 2017.

 

Published by

UNT Eagle Strategies

Class members of the social media class in the Mayborn School of Journalism