Election 2020: How to Comment on Someone Else's Facebook Page (and How Not To!) by Dawn Taylor
Nothing gets people going like politics, and rightly so. However, nothing sparks ugly Facebook battles like politics. As we begin what is arguably one of the most important elections of recent history, the debates on social media rival any we'll watch on television.
After viewing the 2020 Democratic Candidates Debate, I posted my thoughts on some issues on my Facebook page. My Facebook page. I carefully chose my words and hoped that if someone commented it would be respectful if they did not share my opinion. Only one person commented and they clearly did not agree with my opinion, which of course is fine, but ranted about "drinking the Kool-Aid," etc., etc., and I decided to respond in a calm and thoughtful way.
I have come up with some ideas on how to conduct oneself during what are sure to be rough waters over the next year until decision time:
- It is OK to disagree with someone else's opinion but it isn't OK to attack. People have the right to feel the way they do. Read the post and if you don't agree, and if you choose to comment, decide how to respond calmly and carefully. And respectfully.
- Take time to organize a response instead of firing off insults and defensive rants. No one likes to read them.
- It is not OK to berate, belittle, shame. The person posting it has a right to feel the way they do. Offering a counter to an issue, totally fine, but it should be done respectfully, and ideally, factually.
- Profanity is unnecessary and if you are using it on someone else's page, it is plain disrespectful. Say what you want on your own, keep your language clean on other's posts.
- If someone posts something that invites argument, decide if it's worth responding to, especially if this person is notorious for Facebook rants. Some people cannot resist fighting. Resist! Share your own thoughts in a separate post, in a calm and rational way.
- Respond to any negative comments by respectfully disagreeing and do not take the bait to lower yourself to attacks, insults, etc. Disagree and move on or say nothing.
There is enough division in our country. Be thoughtful, not combative, during these tough times. Facebook or other social media will be in full beast mode as we move ahead into election time.
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