That's Your Opinion

hasseman marketing facts Fact > Opinion Here’s a troubling thing about social media and our culture today.  We have blurred the lines between opinions and facts. I tell you this and it’s a FACT!  Careless Whisper is a terrible song!  I mean, what kind of lyric is “Guilty feet have got no rhythm,” anyway?  It’s so bad! Though I stand by that statement, it’s my opinion.  It’s not a fact.  And one of the biggest challenges I see to real truth telling in the world today is that (ever more) blurred line.  It certainly starts with our traditional media.  At one point, our news was brought to us at 6pm and 11pm and was designed to be informative in nature.  Here are the events of the day  But what media companies have discovered is that controversial opinions move the needle on viewership…and eyeballs mean advertising dollars.  So more and more of what you see on the “news” is simply someone’s opinion on the events.  It’s a line that has become difficult to see if you are not looking for it. But it’s not the media’s fault, my friends.  It’s ours. Why?  Well first of all, the media is a reflection of what interests us.  If we stop watching, and ratings plummet, they will change.  They are a business.  So if we continue to gobble it up, they will continue to serve us.  That’s part one. But maybe more importantly is what we do with the information that is served to us.  What do we do with it?  So often, we take the information at face value, with no research or thought, and we regurgitate it.  Hateful and deceitful and, at the very least wildly biased messages get shared again and again.  That, my friends, is not the media.  That’s us. And you might say that “it’s the same for both sides of any argument.”  You would be right…sort of.  The fact is, more and more today we can shut out any voice that does not agree with us.  We can block them on social media.  We can watch only the the networks we agree with.  We can attend only the events that rally our emotions.  It becomes an echo chamber and that sort of distorted information channel is dangerous. What does this mean for you?  It means, most likely, you have really strong opinions on most matters.  They might even FEEL like facts.  But have you really listened to both sides?  Have you really dug in?  Have you really done the research to understand the specifics?   If so, cool.  Let’s talk about it.  I will probably still view it as your opinion…but at least it will be an educated opinion.   If not, do us all a favor.  Keep it to yourself. It’s time to get educated each week!  Sign up for our VIP newsletter here.    

Written by: Kirby Hasseman

Kirby Hasseman is the CEO of Hasseman Marketing & Communications. Kirby hosts a weekly Web show called Delivering Marketing Joy where he interviews business leaders from around the country. Kirby has published four books. His most recent is “Fan of Happy.” His book, called "Delivering Marketing Joy" is about doing “promo right” and is perfect for people in the industry and customers. He also wrote “Think Big For Small Business” and “Give Your Way to Success. All are available on Amazon.