What Would You Do If Nobody Was Watching You?

Social media and public digital presence have created environments where what you do or say have a greater likelihood to spread like wildfire.

Great good most often ensues from fluid dispersion of information, though sometimes people get themselves into trouble by saying offensive or insensitive things. Predictably, companies and individuals are becoming more conscious about what they say and publish in public online venues.

With increased digital exposure, it’s become more common to hear statements like “you’re always on now,” or “the meter is always ticking” or the “world is always watching.”  These statements imply that it is important to always be on your best behavior because someone may be watching or listening.

A challenge with these sentiments is that they emphasize “getting caught” versus demonstrating good character and judgment in the first place. They muddy the waters between the two realms.

Character is reflected by what you would do if absolutely nobody was watching you -- not about how you would behave because you may get caught. The greater exposure inherent in social media presence demands that participants demonstrate higher standards of character and judgment.

This is an important distinction.

 

Tags: internet
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2 comments about "What Would You Do If Nobody Was Watching You?".
  1. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited , January 7, 2014 at 2:57 p.m.
    The rub is that people are more accepting of indiscriminate behavior and despicable behavior of people who want that exposure. That is what that should be extremely disturbing.
  2. Stan Faryna from H&C , January 7, 2014 at 6:55 p.m.
    As Max suggests, character refers to what you do and don't do (period); its not just behavior that can be modified with a little psychobabble; character relates intimately to identity, personality, virtue and purpose. Unfortunately, we cannot define higher standards of character and judgment without defining the nature and dignity of the human person. The rub there is that moral relativity presents insurmountable challenges in defining, accepting and applying professional ethical doctrines without resorting to oppressive regimes of criminality and shame. Be yourself and let the chips fall as they may.