Boomers and Social Media
Generations of people have come and gone on this planet. A Generation is usually considered to be roughly 25 years or so, as that is the amount of time that parents raise their children up to “child rearing age”. So, 25 years is arbitrarily chosen as a ‘generation’.
There are several generations living at once on Earth, and in particular in the United States (which is where we use these terms most often). Other countries might call their generations something different. The “definitions” below are meant only to give you some familiarity with them and when they were born.
Your author comes from the Baby Boomers. Mid-late 50s, raised in the 60s, and coming of “age” in the 70s (voting age, drinking age, joining-the-military-age).
You can pick your own spot on the list below.
While a Boomer, your author (who “identifies as a” ‘he’ since birth) and has been involved in computers since a very early age, built his first computer himself from components and circuit boards assembled at home in the 1970s. The first one was 4K of ram, programmed with switches and LEDs, in binary. Programs were saved on a cassette tape. So, computers are not unfamiliar to this author. Many others his age are less inclined to be involved with computers and as such our generation (Older Boomers) is frowned upon as “computer illiterate”. This is blatantly untrue and an extremely undeserved reputation. Without Baby Boomers, computers wouldn’t even exist, let alone have the innovations they have today.
For the rest of us who might be disinclined to mess with them, this article is for you specifically – Baby Boomers, please read this.
2000 to Present: New Silent Generation or Generation Z
1980 to 2000: Millennials or Generation Y
1965 to 1979: Thirteeners or Generation X
1946 to 1964: Baby Boomers ← for whom this article is mainly written
1925 to 1945: Silent Generation
1900 to 1924: G.I. Generation
Above is a list of accepted names for the Generations. The explanation of why they are called such, or why we even name generations is beyond the scope of this article so for now, for now just accept this list, understand where YOU personally are in the list and let’s move on.
It is generally recognized that most of us Baby Boomers are “old”. Our grand children expect us to be ignorant of computers, how Social Media works, and how to even use a smart phone.
Nothing could be further from the truth. You can teach an old dog new tricks, assuming, of course the “Old Dog” wants to learn. Social Media of various sorts out there exist and each has a purpose and place in life. Some join Facebook to keep in contact with their children and grandchildren. Others join Twitter (and now Gab) to make comments on politics or daily life.
There is LinkedIn, useful for posting resumes, job offers, and keeping in contact with others in similar fields (and even unrelated but helpful in obtaining a position, or helping others to get jobs). LinkedIn is the ultimate Networking tool for computers. In the old days, we “Old Folks” just used the telephone (remember that there were phones hanging on walls once?) and paper resumes, letters and knocks on office doors to hand deliver things.
Here’s a quick list of all the types of Social Media sites of which I’m personally aware:
Facebook (https://facebook.com) Stay in touch with family and friends, a “party line” if you will. Some censorship.
Twitter (https://twitter.com) Make a statement. Have followers. “Pontificate”, so to speak. Lots of censorship depending on who you are, and what you say.
Gab (https://Gab.ai) Very much like Twitter. No censorship.
Linked In (https://linkedin.com) Business networking, mentoring, industry.
Sound Cloud (https://soundcloud.com) Music, Listen, create and share with other musicians)
Instagram (https://instagram.com/) Share art, photos etc with others.
Pintrest (https://www.pinterest.com) Literally a “scrap book” with everything from photos to recipes.
Vine (https://vine.co) Six seconds of short videos.
Tumblr (https://www.tumblr.com) A chronological media site, pictures, words, a public diary of sorts.
Meetup (http://www.meetup.com) Meet with people, in person for group sports, other social activities.
Yours truly has only specific personal knowledge on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Gab.
I will discuss three of those here, very briefly and try to assist the uninitiated in a few simple hints about using these particular Social Mediums.
Facebook: Facebook has been around a long time now. It is used by many for anything from talking to friends using the built in Messenger to posting public remarks on personal pages (or on friends pages). We use it to keep in contact with friends from all walks of life, from old jobs, High School, our children, our grandchildren, and people we’ve met over the years.
Twitter: As an author we use it to put our name out there, to gain a following, and hope they will purchase my books, provide reviews and tell others to read my books. Many use it as a political platform. We specifically will address this shortly.
Gab: Exactly as above, we use it to get my name out to multiple “fans” and again, hope they will remember the author’s name, purchase our books and forward on reviews and convince others to “read”. Again, Gab, like Twitter is also used as a political platform.
LinkedIn: We have used it in the past to put out my resume. We have had job offers through it, but since we are retired, have accepted none of them, nor even interviewed for anything. You can communicate with others, with companies and with prospective employees as well.
Now, to get to the meat of this article.
Politics. For Baby Boomers. Specifically.
We all have our foibles, and idiosyncrasies. We all believe we know more than everyone else at times. We also do NOT stand on ceremony at times and will spit out what we’re trying to say, even thought we truly do NOT necessarily understand what we think we do. We’re all guilty of this to some degree. And yes, we are generalizing.
When it comes to Twitter and Gab, we step in, we say things and move on. We don’t communicate. We don’t engage people. We do not listen to each other. We “pontificate”. Twitter and Gab are both very one sided if you allow it to be so.
So – as a suggestion, for those Boomers who have found themselves on Twitter and Gab we would implore you to “slow down and read” and then investigate. And also to compare your thinking with others.
Twitter makes you feel as if it’s about Quantity over Quality. Tweets (the messages users type on Twitter) are sent out to your Followers which are then read by followers, or retweeted or liked, or ignored. Sometimes followers respond positively or negatively to something you’ve said. Gab works the same way.
Gab and Twitter have “rooms” which you can’t see in Twitter except as Messages. Gab has a set of “rooms” you can see if you’re placed in one, or create it yourself. You don’t have to remain in a room, you can always leave.
But, here’s the biggest point. If someone places you into a room, they have liked something you’ve said and wish to hear from you more. Privately. Or with friends. There are bad uses for rooms, like spammers that want you buy something, watch a movie, or just pester you. You should leave those rooms.
If someone puts you/invites you to a room, you should engage them. Talk, find out what the room is. If it’s not your thing, leave. If it is something you’re interested in, they are seeking your advice, help, or some other thing from you. If you can help, you should ask them what they seek. If it’s advice and you’re not used to getting paid for your advice (Lawyers? Lol) simply help them out.
Boomers, you’re the elder generation. The YOUNG people in those other generations listed above actually are seeking advice from older people. They just don’t realize it yet. We do not mean that in any sort of derogatory manner.
Quite the contrary.
Young people are all we have left in this world, when we’re gone. They seek knowledge, they seek advice, they seek wisdom of the older people to help carry them through to “their time” when they become the leaders of this world.
Many of us disagree, sometimes vehemently with younger people and what we consider to be their “stupid ideas”, but without our guidance, all they have is elementary school, high school, college.
“Book Education does not a person, make.”
Common Sense isn’t common. Book learning is not the end of a education. And a Boomer CAN use Social Media.
The last thing we want to say about any of them is simple, but complex at the same time.
Most of us want to get onto Facebook and say hi to our kids, or on Twitter and yell about some political thing going on at the moment. What we fail to realize is that sometimes, no one listens to you. They don’t care. They don’t even, we’re afraid, even LOOK at what you said.
Occasionally, a smart, pithy comment will gain notice and will get sent on, liked, forwarded, re-tweeted or re-gabbed (as the case might be).
But – is that your legacy? Do you want to be ignored? Or would you prefer to count somewhere?
Here’s the complexity in the situation.
Most of you reading this will be “Right Wing”, “Moderate” or Middle of the Road on politics because of the site(s) it’s being posted on. So, we’re going to give you the secret.
Join Gab. Do it today. Do it now. Create a profile. Put a picture up (not yours). Give yourself a cool sounding name. Put up a banner picture (something having to do with what you’re passionate about).
Now, once you’re there, introduce yourself. If you’re a Right Winger – you might put something in your profile indicating you support, say President Trump. Go into the “Introduce yourself” section and say “HI, I’m whomever-you-are, and I believe this that and the other thing.”
You will suddenly be noticed. Someone will talk to you, someone will follow you, someone will re-Gab your message.
You will eventually find yourself invited to follow others, and you will follow others, and you will find your words. You will get invited to rooms/groups to communicate.
Don’t stop there. USE YOUR WORDS. Use your groups to find like-minded individuals who are, like you, for Freedom, against Censorship and want to Make America Great Again.
If you do this, we promise you a different perspective on politics, life in general and Social Media.
One last piece of advice for those of you on the other media, like Facebook. Keep politics completely off your personal page if you like your friends and don’t care who they are, or what they believe. Join a group on Facebook who has a political group you enjoy. Stay out of the ones you do NOT like. It’s a survival tool.
Separate your politics from your life, from your family, from your friends and from your hobbies.
You will survive longer. And – check your security settings on every place you visit.
Twitter Revisited: Twitter is changing their “rules” in a few days (18 December 2017), their terms of service will allow them to suspend any account they feel like, when ever they wish, and they have been particularly set on removing people who are Trump Supporters, Right Wingers and anyone else they deem to be “dangerous”. If you don’t believe that, just read some of the material being bandied about the past few weeks on the Internet about the subject.
In reading the TOS for Twitter, we do NOT find they are specifically going to limit targeted accounts, except for spammers, and “name squatters” and so forth. The whole “Twitter Purge” still may come about, it might be a non-event. But, we will discover that on the 18th of December 2017, we are sure.
Gab is absolutely the newest, and safest way to “get your word out” and the network is growing. A few days ago, Andrew Torba (@a) stated they were at 333,333 accounts. No where near as large as Twitter yet, but, Twitter’s been around awhile. Gab is pretty new, measure in a couple of years now.
Twitter means to silence the Right. They mean to silence anyone who does not conform to their unwritten standards of “Left Leaning”, “Progressive” or “Muslim” apparently. At some point, something is going to give, and Twitter is going to crash and burn. Facebook is as creepy as it gets for wanting and collecting information about you, and sending you ads.
The whole “Net Neutrality” thing isn’t neutral at all. It’s an effort by the “information providers” like Google, Twitter, Facebook and the like to OWN the bandwidth and force the “bandwidth providers” (the ISPs) to pay for it all. Raising prices on the public (those of us who use it to collect information) is the point.
Freedom of Speech is being driven into the ground, censored and called Hate Speech. Both sides are somewhat guilty of this too. Not the Right and certainly not just the Left. Both. But, when the Right says something it’s called names like “racist” or something similar, and the same language from the Left is championed as “free speech”.
It’s not. It’s as much hate speech as we have heard in years.
If you are a Baby Boomer, and you want your voice heard, then we URGE you to sit down and learn something of the various Social Media sites, choose your poison and dive in. Don’t hit and run, that is don’t post and move on.
Engage both friend and foe alike. Use your words. Not your curse words either. Don’t name call… unless they do it first. But, it’s always better to keep your message clear and on point without distractions and there will be distractions. There will be people who hate your face, your name, your ancestry, your political stance.
You must stand firm in your convictions and correctness. That is “Be Correct”. Don’t lie, don’t make it up, don’t take the first conspiracy theory you see and espouse it. Don’t even BELIEVE those. Do your own research and if you don’t know how to do research DO NOT TAKE THINGS AT FACE VALUE EVER, not from either side.
Common sense rules, and with it you can determine the veracity of statements from the media. Do not use “fact checking sites”. That’s the lazy way out, and the chances of them being correct are very low, especially since most of them are paid for by Left Leaning organizations!
Knowledge is key. Facts are Truth. There’s no such thing as “my truth and your truth”. There is only Truth.
Social Media is the key to communication these days, and it has found more errors in “Main Stream Media” than another other researcher or group, or so-called “Fact Checking Group” (those things are another bane of human existence, how lazy must one be to simply believe what ever is fed to you by Snopes or Politifact?)
Knowledge is not only key. It is power. Power to win arguments and debates. Power to build a bigger, better mousetrap. Or political party. Or group of like minded individuals.
Knowledge, above all else, is what makes us human. Our intelligence is innate, but still derived from knowledge. Without knowledge, we are simple animals who live, eat, sleep and excrete. We are more than animals.
So Boomers… if you have some hatred for computers (why are you reading this then?) or more likely a hatred for “large government” or “intrusive government” or “intrusive applications” get over it. This is the 21st Century. The Government is NOT coming after you for speaking your mind. Unless that Government becomes a Left Leaning Marxist regime (which it could again). Using your speech helps the rest of us prevent a Left Leaning Marxist regime.
Stand up (or rather sit down at your computer) and be heard. Think. Learn. Be powerful.
Use your Social Media to work with others.
If the Key to Power is knowledge, then the key to success is Communications through Social Media.
Do it. Today.
- Slow down and read the messages. Read the comments and thread of messages below the original message.
- Engage with others. Pro and Con.
- Don’t argue a point until you have your point clear in your head and can BACK UP YOUR STATEMENTS.
- Don’t call the other side names. It’s immature. As much as you want to do it, DON’T.
- If the other side behaves irrationally (and the Left certainly does) it’s probably time to move on.
- Engage pro commentators and follow them, help them, and certainly give them other info privately.
- Grow your OWN group of Followers on Twitter, Facebook and Gab.
- Keep your followers engaged with pithy, informational, and fact-filled comments.
- Take care to CHECK YOUR SOURCES of information carefully.
- Being the first with a piece of information (unless you’re watching it happen) isn’t always best.
- Quality over Quantity.
- Don’t forget to thank others for following occasionally and follow them back.
- Like their good posts. Ignore the junk.
- Use your WORDS. The Best words. Not bad words. Not cuss words.
This Author doesn’t always practice what he preaches either. Sometimes cuss words come out, sometimes bad words come out, and sometimes one can’t help but point out exactly what Evil in this world is without using some of those words. Don’t be afraid to NOT point out evil!
Written for American Patriot Reality Check by American Patriot.
Reblogged this on Brittius and commented:
Jeez. I wish that I knew how to work these computers like young kids, do. Okay, if “computer illiterate”, as I describe myself is not accurate or offensive (for my lack of talent and smarts), then I must be, a Knuckle Dragger, in purest form. I did invent a wheel not to long ago. It’s not all that bad, only flat on one side.
/chuckles I wrote that because someone seems to think us older people are both computer illiterate and we don’t “see the rabbit hole”.
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