Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Stop Posting Chain Messages on Facebook!


There. I said it. I hope I don't come off like I got up on the wrong side of the bed, or worse, like a prima dona, but I am getting WAY too many chain emails on social media that ask me to forward them, or post them as my status, or send them back if I like the person who sent it to me. Even more annoying are the ones that promise a blessing or curse if I do or don't forward them.

Chain emails and messages are a nuisance. They clog Messenger and show "You've got mail" when you really just have spam. One day I opened Facebook's Messenger during a lunch meeting, because I was expecting an important message from a potential customer and saw I had 5 messages. I hurried to open them only to discover they were all chain messages 5 from different people asking me to forward or post on my profile something I wasn't interested in sharing.

Forwarded messages are often a hoax. Frequently they contain information that is untrue or out of date, and no one bothers to fact check before they send it on. There is no little boy named Dakota being life-flighted on account of seizures, for instance, although another little boy went through something similar in Dec. 2016. I was asked to forward that one twice today. The Darkhorse Marine Batallion took heavy losses in 2010, not 2017. I also saw requests to forward this one from 2 different friends.  And Facebook, the American Cancer Society and other organizations don't donate money every time you annoy your friends with a chain post. Use common sense -- how would they even track it???

Check the facts before you ask your friends to pass along information that isn't true or is out of date. A good place to check on hoaxes is Snopes.com although Snopes is not always a reliable source of political information.

Chain messages are repetitive. I bet I have received 15 identical messages the past 2 weeks asking me to post a heart on Facebook for breast cancer awareness.  I will donate money or write a personal message about the causes I believe in, but I won't be posting any hearts, or superheroes, or cartoon characters to supposedly "raise awareness" for a good cause. There are much better ways to do that.

If you want to post something you believe in on your profile or send a personal message to friends about something you think is important, I respect that, but don't ask all your friends to post the same message.

Chain posts are annoying.  Imagine you are waiting for an important message and DING! In comes a message. But instead of being Important,  it's your friend Suzy Q telling you you're a pretty lady and asking you to forward it to 15 other women as well as send it back to her. No thanks. Those chain emails are not personal nor are they as genuine as a sincere compliment, and asking for it to be sent back is simply begging for a compliment. Frankly, that's just sad 😭

Next time you want to include my name in a chain message, email, or post--especially if it asks me to forward it or send it back--please stop before your hovering finger adds my name. I appreciate the friendship and kind thoughts of all my friends on Facebook, but I am growing more and more annoyed by ubiquitous chain messages and posts. They are simply another kind of spam.

Don't forget to forward this to 49 friends and post it as your status for the next 36 hours. I know who will post this and I am taking names of all of you who don't. If you forward it to 49 friends and post it as your status within the next 5 minutes, six miniature unicorns will come visit you tonight at midnight, but if you don't forward this, *I* will come visit you at midnight instead of the unicorns... and I WON'T be HAPPY!

TL;DR  Chain messages on social media are irritating, ineffective, and invasive.


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