But first, r-e-a-d this (itty bitty thoughts)
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OMG, you guys. OMG.
Did you know that Harley Davidson endorsed Biden and Harris?
Did you know that Charlie Brown specials won’t be aired on network television anymore because those shows offend people?
YoU gUYs DiD YOu eVEn knOW??
(Imagine Amy sighing heavily.
Shaking her head.
Maybe adding a little something to her morning coffee.)
Please listen to me.
My itty bitty thought for today is a really big request.
Please. Read. Stuff. Before. You. Press. Share.
Please. Dig. Into. Stuff. Before. You. Pass. It. Around.
The Harley Davidson Thing
The above picture was shared with me on social media a couple days ago.
“AMy, yOu HavE to SEll yOUr HarLEY NOw BeCAusE LOok at THIs…” (insert shrieks and mouth frothing)
I decided to look into the Harley thing, not because of who they were supposedly endorsing, but because I thought it would be a pretty bold (stupid, pointless) move for anyone to come out as endorsing anyone so close to the election.
As it turns out the Harley Davidson Biden Harris light display has nothing to do with Harley Davidson. It’s simply a “bat light” that was projected onto the Harley Davidson Museum by the United Steelworkers union. They’ve projected the Biden Harris lights onto various things around the country, including the Trump Tower.
“This was always meant to be fun…” said the USW spokesperson Jess Kamm Broomell.
I think fun is a basket of kittens in my barn, but…whatever.
Social media is a powerful thing. It can spread rumors—and it can also be a way for companies to go about trying to stop those rumors, as shown on the Harley Davidson Facebook page:
In just a couple clicks more than it would have taken me to share something, I had my answers. Research doesn’t require a card catalog or an Encyclopedia Britannica anymore. Take the extra time technology gives you and use the interwebs to at least attempt to fact check something before you share it.
The Charlie Brown Thing
“AMY! TheY’RE taKinG CHarLie BrOWn oFF TV beCAuSE pEoPLe ARe OffENDed BY It. AMy, WhAT iS ThiS WOrlD ComINg TO?”
My thirteen seconds of research tells me the Charlie Brown thing has zero to do with someone being offended and pulling it from network television. It’s apparently because the Peanuts shows are now under an exclusive contract with AppleTV+ and therefore it doesn’t appear the holiday specials can be shown on network television.
You guys, the information was right. in. the. articles. that. were. shared.
You know, the articles shared with status updates like, those Nazi terrorists are taking away my Charlie Brown holiday specials now? or Great. Now the snowflakes have gotten rid of Charlie Brown, too!
You guys. Can we at least save the 2020 shrieking and mouth frothing for things that are actually true?
The Uncomfortable Truth
It doesn’t matter if right now the topic is Charlie Brown or Harley Davidson. Last week, it was something different. Tomorrow it will be something else. The problem, however, is the same.
We live in a time where opinions are passed as fact. Where headlines are creatively written with half truths. Where anything can be photoshopped. Where things can be attributed to certain people with a slight twist of words. Where alliances can be implied with pictures.
And it works because very few people ever look past the quick headline or first glance of a photo.
The uncomfortable truth is this:
The issue isn’t social media.
The issue is us.
— Amy Dingmann 10-22-20