I want to put this out clearly for young Africans who spend a lot of their time on Social Media; beware of disinformation campaigns on Social Media, especially Facebook, Twitter and now WhatsApp.
These platforms are there to make money for their inventor(s) and investors.
They are not your friends especially if you do not know the direction of your life. If you are not careful, Social Media will capture your attention so much that you will not achieve anything worth talking about.
The world has changed so much in the last thirty years, mostly for the better.
But, for countries like ours (in Africa), we are still trying to figure out ways to develop our continent, the rate of change is scary and the amount of disinformation campaigns on Social Media is making it worse for everyone to know what is true or not.
Social Media invention is a game-changer in human civilization. It connects the world and allows everyone to get information from everywhere at the speed of light.
The real question is;
Has Social Media connected us to become better as a species?
To me, the jury is still out because if a substantial amount of information we are getting as an ever better-connected species is untrue, inaccurate, or deliberate lies, what is the real benefit to human progress?
It has highlighted and enabled the use of our divisions (race, politics, religion, etc.) against us!
You need to understand the new dynamics around you to make the necessary decisions for your future.
What Are the Effects of These Disinformation Campaigns on Social Media?
This is a global issue that affects every country in the world and I’m very concerned about Africa.
Our situation as a developing continent with the youngest population in the world and inadequate education systems, young Africans and our counties (with unstable institutions) are ripe to be taken advantage of us by the people who want to keep us where we are.
Social Media Disinformation Campaigns Do Not Control Me
This is the talk of many people who do not believe that they are being controlled by the information on Social Media.
Big Companies, politicians, religious organizations have spent billions of dollar to reach you on Social Media, what is it for them?
The more clueless we are, the better for them to continue to manipulate us.
The content you read or watch affects your mood and the action you take afterward.
Anyone who spends a lot of time on and yet tells me that they are not been affected by Social Media, are totally in the rabbit hole.
They have lost the battle.
Division: is The Major Strategy of Disinformation Campaigns
I’m nearly 100% sure that you have heard the phrase: “Divide to Concern”, good.
This is exactly what the people spending disinformation campaigns on Social Media are doing.
They are polluting the information with so many untrue and half-true videos and articles that even knowledgeable people will start to doubt even true information.
They use this to separate people; to make puns fighting one another to their own detriment and in favor of the “masters”.
If you truly understand the extent of disinformation campaigns on Social Media, you will be perplexed. And you may think that you don’t have a chance not to be got up in it.
But there are some simple ways to minimize this in your life.
How You Can Protect Yourself from These Disinformation Campaigns on Social Media
One of the things that the 24-hours instant news circle has created is to convince all of us that we need to know everything going on in the world.
Yes, it’s great to be informed about things going on, but it is not to your benefit to spend so much time enveloped in things or situations that you cannot do anything about.
This is a recipe for constant stress, anger, and depression.
You don’t want these in your life, ever!
You need to define your boundaries and strictly adhere to keeping it.
Know the Direction of Your Life and Focus on It
Spending hours every day on Social Media disrupts many people’s goals and dreams.
By giving away the time they should be using to work on themselves and their dreams, they spend arguing on someone else’s agenda and dreams.
If you want to progress in your life, then this is the worst strategy for you to spend so much time on Social Media.
Many people who spent a lot of time on Social Media do this because they do not actually know what to do with their time.
They do not have a direction in their lives.
If they had a direction in their lives, they would not waste their most limited commodity on Social Media.
You have the power to define the direction of your life and then put maximum focus on this.
Get in touch!
Spend Less Time on Social Media
Time is the most precious commodity in the world, and how you spend your time will determine your progress and success in your life.
Let me ask you some very simple questions:
How much time do you spend on Social Media every week?
What do you do on Social Media?
How has your time on Social Media improved your life?
When I ask these questions and analyze the answers from my mentees and coaching client, these are a few things that are clear.
On average, many spend 3-4 hours a day on Social Media.
Most of them read and watch content from unvaried sources. Read, comment and urge on political and religious message posts.
None of them was able to substantiate any meaningful value that accrued to them.
Does this mean there is no value for being in Social Media?
I would not say that; there is value to gain on Social Media if you know how to use it, unfortunately, most people do not know, and they become puns in the hands of people who want to control us.
So, please spend less of your time on Social Media.
Verify Information Before You Share
One beautiful thing about Social Media is the ease of sharing content and information.
If you have a piece of powerful information that can help other people, Social Media makes it easy to reach and share the information.
But what if the information you have is untrue, and you share it; you have come a pun in the disinformation campaign wheel.
So, I will say this; do not be eager to share content that may be divisive, cruel, untrue especially if you cannot verify the source as credible.
It doesn’t matter if it sounds good or true, make sure it’s true before you share.
Share Less Personal Information
Limit the number of yours and your family member pictures you share.
Stop liking and commenting on every post.
You don’t need to tell the world where you are or where you have been
The less personal information you share on your Social Media accounts, the less the advertiser will know about you.
And the less targeted messages you will receive.
Don’t Allow the Disinformation Campaigns on Social Media Derail Your Future
Let me ask you these questions.
What kinds of articles and videos go viral on Social Media?
Most of them have negative content, war, violence, scandals, etc.
Have you ever asked yourself why?
Does this mean that there are more of these issues in the world today?
If you read and watch the videos, you will think that these are happening more and more in the world.
But the truth is that the world today is better than it was yesterday and better than it was ten years ago.
What is available to you in the world today, was not available to your parents and grandparents in their youthful days.
The world is safer than ever before, more opportunities, better healthcare, etc.
Yes, this is absolutely true.
Unfortunately, Africa and the youths of Africa may not see these incredible life improvements because of the massive population explosion.
Our leaders have not done very well to position Africa at the forefront of the 21st century.
Now, you have two clear choices.
Or you can decide to continue to dance to the drum bits of the people who what to control and keep you where they want you to stay and continue moaning, blaming and complaining.
It’s your decision, and I encourage you to make the right choice.
To yours and Africa’s progress…