Talking Back to Social Media

Using the powerful tools of social media we can freely (mostly) share ideas and create communities.. In fact, it’s our way to talk back to the commercial and political messages that have bombarded us for the past century.

But how ironic that instead of resisting the commercial messages so many of us amplify them, by using social media to show ourselves doing and saying the very things that have been advertised to us..

The best example of social media gone amok is how women and girls display themselves — particularly on sites like Instagram — as attractive objects, in fashions and poses that have been used to sell. And increasingly, men are getting into the act.

Depicting yourself as an object requires imagining yourself being looked at as an object. For decades women have railed against being objectified, so for those of us who’ve been around a while, this looks like regressing. If we trap ourselves into a box where we’re objects to be looked at, attracting and pleasing anonymous viewers, then we’re probably not spending enough time looking inward, mining our own personal gems and creating something new and original. 

Culture isn’t something “out there.” It’s something we all continually create together. We each have a role to help civilization advance and don’t have to ask anyone’s permission. We just need to think about it first and then act in ways that enhance our humanity.