Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Thirty Day Writing Challenge (Day One): My five problems with social media

I haven't written anything in a very long time.

One of my Facebook friends, fellow educator, and fellow Duke fan, Deana, issued a challenge of sorts on her Facebook.

The challenge: thirty days of writing with a different prompt each day.

Let's be real honest. It's 8 p.m. and I haven't blogged since the beginning of September. This one is going to suck. But you've read this far, might as well push through. I did.

The first prompt is five problems I have with social media. I can't think of any particular order to rank these in, so I'll just be spitting them out with a number next to them.

1. Different expectations for different networks — I once heard someone say, "Facebook is church on Sunday morning, and Twitter is the strip club you were in on Saturday night." I don't know that I've ever heard anything more accurate. There was a time—before students found me on the Twitter—where I used a foul word every once in a while or I'd retweet a crude picture. I will say this, that has changed since I've started teaching and helping out with the youth group at my church. I want to set a good example for the next group of world leaders, so I've tried to tone things down across all the platforms I'm currently on (Facebook, Twitter, IG, Snapchat, LinkedIn, etc.). But to this day, if I need to rant, I choose Twitter for the diatribe, mostly because my mom hasn't found Twitter, and neither have most of the school board.

2. Beefs — I don't get Twitter and Facebook beefs. I mean, I understand keyboard warriors and the need to troll, I do that all the time. But to actually get into a real fight with someone over social media? Come on. GUYS YOU AREN'T DOING ANYTHING WHEN YOU DO THAT. All you've managed to do is prove you're an idiot on a network where idiots tend to go viral. I have gotten into a Twitter beef with Tom Arnold once, which devolved into one of his followers insulting my "sodium-induced bloated face," which I'm not gonna lie, cut real deep. Where's the beef? Not where I can see it, folks. Chill out.

3. Creepers — Look. I've dated a few women, I've made some mistakes, I've adopted three kids, and I teach young people. I know y'all are creeping on me. In fact, someone reading this right now is doing nothing but trying to catch me throwing shade so they can try to ruin my life.


I would also like to add that my wife is the creeper champ, but it's out of necessity is what she tells me, so I let it slide. Don't creep, y'all. Especially if you're a teenager reading this, or if you have the maturity level of a teenager, don't creep. Don't do it. You'll make your enemies a whole lot more mad if you aren't typing their name into a search bar somewhere. Of course I could just defer to Wilde here:


4. That I can't WUPHF people yet — 


Seriously scientists, I'm looking at you. Make this happen. 

5. Twitter won't verify me — As you can tell, I'm really reaching deep into the bag here. But in all honesty, here's my argument. I'm a teacher, right? I have students who follow me on Twitter, right? HOW DO THEY KNOW IT'S THE REAL TRAVIS SLOAT? It's a security issue is what it is, we can't have kids following fake educator accounts and being seduced with things like people sliding into their DMs, or offering them money for more followers. Twitter needs to verify me so my students know that I'm the real Mr. Sloat. I've tried tweeting that to them, but to no avail. Maybe you all could help me out? 

There you have it, it's now 8:40 p.m. and I've written my first blog for the writing challenge. If you catch me slipping, I'd appreciate some accountability on your end by WUPHFing me and keeping me on my toes. And if you don't want to read thirty days of this (it will get better I swear), then you should probably just delete me off whatever social media site you pulled this from. I promise I won't mind. 

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