Social media is a wonderful thing…in the right hands.
Those hands must be level headed (is that possible?), never react in anger and should always think before they type.
The immediacy of social platforms make sure knee-jerk reactions hang around to haunt you forever, or at least for a very long time.
Frequently, celebrities are caught up in Twitter spats or put out a not-particularly-well-thought-out tweet, prompting Cosmopolitan to list its top 10 celebrity Twitter blunders of 2012:
- The infamous Tulisa vs Dappy spat
- Diana Abbott’s ‘white people love paying divide and rule’ prompted by Bim Adewunmi tweet about the term ‘black community’
- TOWIE’s Jessica Wright’s ill-judged ‘rest in peace’ tweet in response to the news of the death of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il
- Kim Kardashian tweeting a photo of herself holding a cat by the scruff of its neck
- Ashton Kutcher’s tweets of support for football coach Joe Paterno
- Russell Bran tweeting a picture of hi ex-wife Katy Perry with no makeup on
- Piers Morgan revealing Ryan Giggs as the high profile footballer having an affair
- Charlie Sheen direct messaging his mobile number of Justin Bieber only for it to end up on his timeline
- Chris Brown reacting to the critics when he picked up a Grammy
- Rihanna for writing cryptic messages, soon after Chris Brown posted a picture of his new girlfriend, suggesting he was being less than faithful
But one of the more recent examples left Labour MP David Lammy apologising.
What did he do?
Well, following this tweet from BBC News:
David Lammy accused the BBC of being racist claiming the tweet from the BBC was “…crass and unnecessary. Do we really need silly innuendo about the race of the next Pope?”
After it was pointed out to him that black smoke appears from a Vatican chimney when no decision has been made and white smoke when a new Pope has been elected, he realised his mistake and was forced to make the following apology:
“Note to self: do not tweet from the Chamber with only one eye on what you’re reading. Sorry folks, my mistake.”
So there you go, some very good reasons why you should never Tweet in haste or anger.
Before you write your tweet always make sure:
- You have carefully read the tweet you’re responding to
- You’re not responding in anger and the heat of the moment
- Think carefully about what you write and how it will be take by others
- You’re careful about what you send in a direct message