Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Personal Broadcasting

We are all broadcasters.

Because of social media, each of us gets to run our own media outlet. We select the news to report, commentary, editorials, and the like.

This post concerns the rights and responsibilities we have as broadcasters.

One has a right to determine the subject matter one will report on. One’s personal channel may resemble “home and garden”, “(auto) biography”, “food”, or “CNN”. Or any imaginable mixture of the possibilities.

One does not have any obligation to provide a platform for ideas one thinks are contemptible or false. In other words, it is absurd for anybody to claim, “You did not share my ideas! I am being oppressed!”

When one does present the ideas of others, one has an obligation to present those ideas fairly and honestly. But a fair and honest presentation may well be, “That is stupid and no responsible person would accept such a thing.”

One has a responsibility to filter for truth. Consider this a condemnation of anybody who passed along malicious or false statements or distortions simply because it suits an agenda. Such people are like a disease that bring avoidable suffering to others. This applies not only to liars, but the intellectually reckless - people who make drunk drivers (with the death and suffering they cause) look like saints.

A liar is a parasite, who seeks to profit by planting false beliefs in others - false beliefs that cause the victim sacrifice her own interests and those she cares about for the benefit of the liar.

One must avoid unnecessary cruelty. Many viral postings violate this rule. This mostly applies to comments and many “viral” videos and pictures. Not only are they often dishonest, the inflict far more suffering on others than their “crimes” deserve. People form something of a Lynch mob, stringing somebody up for a “crime” that deserves only a mild reprimand. Ask yourself, "Haven't they suffered enough already?"

Hypocrisy is the essence of insisting that others follow rules one is not willing to follow. The person who lists false or misleading information is a hypocrite if she then condemns others for posting false or misleading information.

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