The Science Behind Negative Tweets

The Science Behind Negative Tweets

The rise of Social Media has meant that is have become a whole lot easier for people to be negative towards others. Do you believe that this is good, bad or just plain ugly? Is there a science behind why people are more negative on social media, has it unlocked a hidden evil in us all, was it there all along?

For one, it is not difficult to scrutinise others when you have a screen to protect you. The Internet has become digital-fuelled alcohol, we now say things to strangers that we would never say if we met them. They consider themselves less accountable for their actions. But, I’m not just talking about Internet trolls, they aren’t the only ones who try to embarrass, scrutinise and ridicule people online.

“In the real world people subconsciously monitor the behaviour of others around them and adapt their own behaviour accordingly […] Online we do not have such feedback mechanisms.” – Graham Jones

According to Sherry Turkle’s study based on hundreds of interviews over 15 years, when we let ourselves carry out behaviours online, behaviours we would never do in person, there will most definitely be real life consequences.

“We do things online that hurt and damage real relationships: We’re curt with people we work with; we’re aggressive with people in our families; we bully people we go to school with.” – Sherry Turkle

A negative tweet could have a very long lasting consequence for the recipient. Bad things seem to outweigh the good (in my own experience, negative comments or emotions about myself are much more hardwired into my brain, than the good). Research found that bad news is stored into our long term memory quickly and positive experiences have to be held in our awareness for more than 12 seconds in order for the transfer from short-term to long-term memory.

“The brain is like Velcro for negative experiences but Teflon for positive ones.” – Rick Hanson

Furthermore, Teresa Amabile found that people assume negative statements to be more intelligent than positive ones and we also go negative in our own opinions when trying to impress people with our own intelligence. It’s called hypercriticism. And, negativity seems to get a lot more attention on Social Media than a good old cheer. But why? It’s a sad fact, but maybe people are being negative to get themselves heard.

Personally, I don’t see this as a reflection of someone’s intelligence. I think they have become lost in a dark place, where voyeurism has span out of control and then they have got themselves tangled up in their own ego.

While I understand that the Internet is a great place for people to share opinions, a place to speak their minds. Nonetheless, if this is what really goes on in your mind, Maybe you’re not exactly a nice person. There must be a means of expressing yourself with decorum?

This blog was to show that it may well be in each and every one of us to be negative. And Social Media has made it a whole lot easier. But, it also hurts people, real people. While you might think it makes you clever, it doesn’t. Wouldn’t you be much more intelligent to #ThinkBeforeYouTweet. Think about what you are saying and how it could affect the person on the other side. Try offering advice instead of scrutinising others for trivial things. This is one of the things I love about blogging, everyone is extremely positive and takes the time to get to know each other and if criticism is due, it’s constructive.

“If everyone just stopped thinking about themselves all the time and started thinking about others for a change, then the world would be a nicer place to live.” – Clarey

I’m a firm believer that if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say it all. And the same goes for twitter:

If you don’t have anything nice to tweet, don’t tweet at all.


#Nomakeup For Cancer Research, What Is The Issue?

Nomakeup For Cancer Research

Everyone is talking about the ‘#Nomakeup’ selfies that are apparently raising money for Cancer Research. All over my news feed there are pictures of bare faced friends, stating they are doing their bit for charity.

However, there has been some controversy to whether these selfies actually help raise money for charity. I have heard numerous arguments to why people think this campaign is pointless. For example, these selfies are just narcissism masked as charity, people should actually do something proactive for charity and people are posting images of themselves, but are not donating. While I agree these are valid points, I personally believe that people talking about Cancer charities, Cancer Research or Cancer Awareness is better than not talking about it at all.

If hypothetically 10% of people talking about any charity actually donate,  if 5000 people were talking about Cancer Research before and now 1,00000 people are talking about it, is it  safe to say anyone who uploaded a picture of themselves (I have even seen guys posting glammed up pictures too), commented or liked a picture, re-tweeted, wrote an article for a newspaper or blog or even wrote a status or an 140 character tweet ranting about how you think it is pathetic, all helped Cancer Research raise money for charity?

It is called creating an Online Buzz. Everyone is talking about it, Hashtaging it, it is a marketing campaign. Corporations such as, Starbucks and Coca Cola are great examples of encouraging interactivity on social networks in order to get millions of people talking about them. Are you saying you didn’t see your friend’s bottle of Coca Cola with their name printed across it on Facebook and then later scan the Coca Cola shelf for your name too, only to settle for a name you just thought was hilariously funny?

And their campaign did work, according to The Telegraph, The ‘No make-up selfie’ trend helped Cancer Research UK raise £1million in 24 hours. Whatever their motives might be does it really matter. Who cares it made millions of people discuss Cancer Research, discuss Cancer awareness, it made people think about other ways to participate in other Cancer charities and it did make people donate. Mission accomplished.

Why not donate money to Cancer ResearchMacmillan Cancer, Marie CurieCLIC Sargent or Teenage Cancer Trust today? Or participate in a Race for life event (that’s what I will be doing).