Duncan Garner: Why we should all walk away from social media

Opinion 26/03/2019

OPINION: Social media is a twisted, evil little pest that controls our lives, dominates our world and I am struggling to see the good bit.

It's not helping us be better human beings.

I saw a guy the other day crossing the road attached to his phone, and cars stopped for him. Had they not, he'd be dead.

Social media isn't teaching us or our kids how to communicate.

It dominates households, relationships, workplaces, the bus, the train, the car, the dinner table.

Its creep into our life is extraodinary - it's a terminal illness eating us from the outside in.

Yes, we may be better informed, but it's information overload.

We're being force-fed a toxin or poison and it's an addiction up there with other nasties, like cigarettes, drugs, sugar, and booze.

Social media's global giants have been dragged into this Christchurch terror event. They have been more than just dragged into it, they're front and centre. The technology failed. It's why the PM met with Microsoft President Brad Smith. She wants change, but is it possible to wrangle the beast?

Facebook allowed a 17-minute video of the massacre to go out around the world. So much for social media keeping a check on itself.

Facebook's response looked cold, twisted and out of touch.

These massive companies operating under the guise of social media operate above the law, in the cloud, pay as little tax as possible, and somehow corporate and social responsibility is for someone else.

 

I urge the Prime Minister to keep the pressure on, stand up for what's right and demand these companies do the right thing.

I came off all forms of social media two years ago because it dominated my life. It can control you, your mood, your life.

Try stepping away from it - you may find you talk to real people in real time.

We also have the power to create change by walking away, by demanding better.

I used to be one of the greatest advocates for social media - Twitter and Facebook. I am now their greatest enemy.

Duncan Garner is host of The AM Show.