Facebook and Twitter experienced an election hangover during the days following the 2012 presidential election. Users were still posting snarky and “witty” comments about their favorite/least favorite candidates, while a majority of the viewers scoffed at these young adults who probably didn’t even know much about each candidate anyways.
And after a few days passed, people began posting photos of their fancy meals again instead of their political beliefs. Yet, how easy is it to truly mend friendships after posting conflicting opinions on social media? Especially with those who are merely weak ties, who you have little interest in?
A USA Today article, entitled “With the election over, time to mend social-media fences in real life,” discusses how important repairing real-life relationships are, that may have been damaged through social media performances.
The article interviewed various people who had experiences arguing with friends over the internet about the election, and have either remained real-life friends or have created tension. The piece touched upon “unfriending” those Facebook weak ties who posted about the election. After all, the 2012 election was the most popular on social media. And despite all the petty arguments that began over the internet, the article interviewed Zoe Hanock, an “expert in social and business protocol,” who gave readers advice on how to make up with your friends, which is kind of silly. She suggests sending a handwritten note to the person you got in an argument with, and tell them how much you care about them and want them in your life. This section is interesting because it implies that readers, who are probably adults and young adults, don’t know how to apologize to people. However, it would make sense to give such advice because many readers got into fights over the internet in the first place, which is just dumb.
It even seems as if since the election is such a well-known topic, people feel more comfortable sharing their opinions as a social cue because more people will understand what they’re talking about. People who usually don’t post statuses or their opinions felt the need to during this night, which implies that they are seeking to establish their online identities. It’s ironic how many Facebook and Twitter users have used the election to establish social cues about them selves, yet many followers or friends view these postings as annoying, ignorant and overall unimpressive. After all, politics is a taboo topic if you want to keep a peaceful relationship with friends.