The other day, the young man and I were having a very interesting conversation about the ‘shirtless‘ men posted on Facebook by his female friends. He didn’t think it was fair that woman could, on a regular basis post images of men without shirts and hit the “like” button, yet he or his male friends could not post an image of a ‘shirtless‘ woman, and hit the “like” button. (Facebook seems to also delete pictures of women breastfeeding, deeming them to be pornographic).
I completely agree with my son; it isn’t fair that women can sexualize men, but the minute a man does that to a woman, there is an uproar. Feminists want equal rights for men and women, so I’m curious how many of you “Feminists” out there, hit the “Like” button? I bet quite a few of you do, will you even admit to it?
So until Facebook lets men post pictures of women without shirts and let them hit the “like” button, I will not hit the “like” button for shirtless men, and I will do my best to delete those posts that I see in my stream.
Yes, this subject is opening a can of worms.
Nothing like posting a controversial subject as my last post of 2014, Happy New Year!
I have been computer literate for years, so when I had my children, each learned early how to use one and the rules of using the computer. First and most importantly, they were not allowed on the internet unless mom or dad were in the room. When the kids joined Facebook, there were new rules to follow and it all worked out well. Most importantly they were not allowed to ever chat with strangers online or meet anyone they spoke with online.
Years went by, and Twitter came about, which of course I joined (geek). The kids were older and were now lecturing me about chatting with strangers online. When I said I was going to a Tweet-up, they freaked on me. I explained I would be in a local restaurant thus a public place, and I would have my cell on me, they weren’t particularly pleased but finally gave their approval (I was 50 years old by the way, in their mind though age did not matter). All went well at the get-together, I met other moms in my city and basically we chatted about boring things. My next big step was attending a Blogging conference, where I met other bloggers from all over Canada.
So when I heard Sarah (the blogger behind Journeys of the Zoo) and her family would be in my area, I invited them to our house for a barbecue, my children were not very impressed. Middle child went so far as to post this on her Facebook page: mama bird is having some internet friends over for dinner….. I feel like this is turning into an episode of how to catch a predator. Now I had been chatting with Sarah on Twitter before I met her at the Blissdom Canada Social Media/Blogging Conference. We hit it off immediately, continued our relationship online, I added her to my snail mail Christmas list, and her lovely children mailed me a postcard from Mexico (it only took about two months for it to arrive). Basically Sarah was no longer a stranger to me, though she was to my family.
This past Sunday, Sarah and her family arrived for dinner, and we all immediately got along. Her children were amazingly adorable and well-behaved, her husband and brother were exceptionally polite guests but also humorous. It was a lovely visit all round, and I look forward to them dropping by again.
Note: You have to be very careful who you chat with on the internet, though that person may say they are the same age as you are, you cannot take this as true. Always meet in a public place, if possible bring a friend along with you. If you are underage, DO NOT meet up with people you chatted with and always talk to your parents please.
Parents: it is important that you know what your children are doing online; when our kids were young we had the computer in our living room, that way, we could easily monitor their activity. If you are not computer literate, look into taking a course, most libraries or community centres will offer free courses for adults.
Remember the online world can be fun but it can also be dangerous, so just be informed.
There are various types of friendships one can have close friends, acquaintances, work friends, Facebook friends, Twitter friends, friends made through blogs, and the list can go on to add pretty much whatever you want. I have one close friend, my bff (best friend forever) and she has been my friend for thirty years or so. When we met she was the girlfriend of my boyfriend’s (now husband) best friend. We have remained friends through her divorce, remarriage, deaths, the births of our children, she was in the room when I had my second child, we have laughed together and have been sad together. If I needed her this very minute, I know I could phone her and she would be here in a second. Months ago, my son was doing his best to cheer his mom up who was falling apart one day, he phoned my bff in secret and asked her to come by after work because mom was having a hard time. She came.
I have been on Twitter for two years, 9 months, 2 days, so many minutes and seconds (there’s an app). During this time I have chatted with people from all over the world and made friends with some. It wasn’t long after I was on Twitter, that one of the tweeps I spoke with asked if anyone wanted to be her penpal, thus write letters back and forth, the old fashion way. I said sure why not? It was something I have not regretted. We have written goodness knows how many letters during the past two years and have become good friends. I know all about her family, her ups and downs, and she knows the same about me. When my eldest daughter was in grade two, the teacher set up a letter writing exercise with a grade two class from another school. My daughter’s penpal ironically ended up being a cousin she rarely saw, it was so cool. When I was young, penpals were all the rage, now with instant messaging, Facebook, Twitter, etc, children/teenagers don’t have the experience like we did long ago. Cursive writing isn’t even taught in some schools and kids use short forms for speaking with their friends.
Even though the computer has changed the way we communicate with each other, friendships will continue on, we will not become blips on the screen, at least I don’t think so.