The Morehead News

Friday's Post

February 10, 2012

Beware the dangers of digital diarrhea!

Feb. 10, 2012 —     At the risk of offending the sensibilities of my readers, I intentionally chose the last “d” word in the headline because I want to shock you into reading what I have to say.

    And, after reading what I have to say, perhaps more than once, that you will be bold or brave enough to share it with someone you know and love before tragedy befalls them.

    I don’t know if digital diarrhea is a term of my own invention but I do believe it most accurately describes those individuals who literally, constantly and uncontrolledly spill their insides on various social media.

    I looked up the word “naive” to make sure that fits as an appropriate descriptor – much kinder than “reckless” – for these folks who apparently believe that everyone who accesses the web is honest, God-fearing and committed to family values.

    Why else would you tell the world that your family will be on vacation at Disney World for the next week?

    Is that really any different than leaving the doors unlocked with an engraved invitation on the front door for the first burglar who comes through your neighborhood?

    It may surprise you to learn that in some parts of this great country, undertakers have to post a guard at the homes of deceased persons so the dearly departed won’t be robbed during their own funerals.

    And the burglary hazard is even greater today because of all the pill heads who will steal anything.

    All of us have read about or perhaps know about teenagers who have been seduced in online chat rooms, sometimes with scary consequences, by an adult they presumed was another teenager.

    Knowing that such predators constantly prowl the endless expanse of the web, why would a loving parent tell his or her online buddies that their teenager is home alone for a weekend?

    Or how sexy their 14-year-old daughter looks in her first pair of high heels, complete with a glamour photo? 

    Beyond the obvious risks to themselves and their family members, what does it say about someone who feels compelled to publish a daily, detailed log of their most intimate activities?

    I’m glad that most people practice good personal hygiene and that their bodies function normally but does anyone really care that you just left the bathroom after turning on the exhaust fan?

    No, I am not exaggerating. These things and worse are appearing now in the social media and many posting obviously don’t filter anything, sort of like, if it crosses your mind, post it!

    Online socializing should not include inviting evildoers into our homes or giving up our privacy. The marvels of the digital age should be a blessing, not a curse.

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