Friday, July 16, 2010

Facebook - For Good And For Bad

Nathan JonesPDFBy Nathan Jones

Are you on Facebook? Statistically, chances are "of course" is the most likely answer you'll be giving.

Boasting over 400 million active users, Facebook is THE social network phenomenon whose usership dwarfs the entire population of the United States (309,745,204 people as of this writing according to the U.S. Census Bureau). More than likely, you're one of the million-fold masses.

DigitalBuzzBlog's "Facebook: Facts & Figures For 2010" shows that this modern marvel of communication and social connectivity has created a new era in which mankind communicates. From its humble beginnings cobbled together by students in a Harvard dorm in February of 2004, Facebook has amassed some staggeringly high statistics for 2010.


Top 10

People:

  • 35 million users update their status each day
  • 55 minutes spent on per day per user
  • 20 million people become fans of pages each day
  • 130 friends average per user
  • 13 groups the average user is a member of
  • 25 comments the average user writes each month
  • 3.5 million events created each month
  • Texas Hold'em Poker is the favorite game

Site:

  • 60 million status updates per day
  • 3 billion photos added each month
  • 5 billion pieces of content shared each week
  • 3 million active pages

Businesses:

  • 1.5 million local business have pages

Technology:

  • 500,000 active applications
  • 70 translations available translated by 300,000 users
  • 100 million users connect via mobile

Facebook's blend of technology, people and connectivity means power, and not just the power over private information. The real power behind Facebook is the ability to extend one's ideological reach over a wider mass of people. This can be a power for good or for bad.


For Bad

The best example of bad is the "Kill a Jew" Facebook Group. Started by a user named "Alex Cookson" and adorned with a big swastika as its profile image, this person created an event called "Kill a Jew Day." As reported by The Jerusalem Post on July 5, 2010, the "Web site urged users to violence 'anywhere you see a Jew' between July 4 and July 22." Cookson wrote, "You know the drill guys." One user even commented, "Can't wait to rape the dead baby Jews." Another user posted images of corpses piled on one another, while a third posted quotes by Adolf Hitler.


Anti-Semetic Facebook Group

This is the fourth anti-Semitic site taken down by Facebook within just a few days. Facebook spokesman Andrew Noyes commented, "Unfortunately ignorant people exist and we absolutely feel a social responsibility to silence them on Facebook if their statements turn to direct hate. That's why we have policies that prohibit hateful content and we have built a robust reporting infrastructure and an expansive team to review reports and remove content quickly."

Nevertheless, the damage was done. David Appletree, founder of the Jewish Internet Defense Force website (JIDF), reported that such efforts in online anti-Semitism "has already helped spur violent incidents, such as the 2007 assault on Holocaust author Elie Wiesel in San Francisco by a Holocaust denier, and the gun attack on the Holocaust Museum in Washington by a white supremacist armed with a rifle, which claimed the life of a security guard."


For Good

That same power to connect ideas to people which man can use for evil, can be used for good as well, and for God.

Take the Christ in Prophecy Facebook Group. With almost 1,900 people engaged in sharing the blessed hope of Jesus Christ's soon return, discussing Bible prophecy, sharing prayer requests, witnessing to visitors, and hashing out the tough doctrines and issues — this group has connected people from all over the planet who never would have met otherwise. It gives believers in Christ Christian connectivity and unites the brethren in our common love of the Lord. It's also a safe environment, moderated by a godly man who's earned the title "Son of Thunder."


Christ in Prophecy Facebook Group


For a Time

Should Facebook, as the JIDF has recommended, implement IP bans on people involved in posting inflammatory material, as well as call upon law enforcement to get involved, Facebook be subpoenaed, and the IP's of the people threatening and inciting violence be obtained so that legal action can be immediately pursued? Or, should Facebook instead implement a passive filter that detects keywords which could prevent such "hate" pages from being loaded in the first place?

And, how should Facebook describe "hate"? From the Bible, Christians know that we are to hate evil and love good (Amos 5:15; Rom. 12:9), and so know that anti-Semitism is very evil. We are even told that anti-Semitism's growth will play a huge end time role (Zech. 12:2-3; 13:8-9; Rev. 12:13-17).

But, what of those who get it all upside down and hate good? Again, what is meant for good can also serve evil. What if the words "pro-life" and "Christian" and "Jesus" are found offensive (and they are to a growing and evilly vocal group), and end up being censured?

Long before Spiderman's Uncle Ben said "with great power comes great responsibility," Jesus pointed out in Luke 12:48, "From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked." Believers in Christ have been given much with Facebook, and we should use this far-reaching phenomenon for good while being good is allowed in these darkening times.

25 comments:

son of thunder said...

You make me blush, Nathan.

I'd like to see more people from this group slide over there. I know it's not possible for some, but the door is always open. If you like the conversations and discussions here....

hartdawg said...

as i once (or many times) said before, i cant access facebook from my phone and i dont have a computer

Anonymous said...

Refuse to use Facebook due to privacy issues. Will soon stop using Google for same reasons

Billy said...

And you refuse to give your name too :)

Billy said...

Facebook is probably great for sites like Lamb & Lion (I'll give it a look) but as far as personal use...

Well, I reluctantly have been trying it for a couple weeks now and to me it seems to be a waste of precious time. Do I really need to read every insignificant opinion of every friend on matters I most likely have no interest in, know what mood they are in at the time, know what they are doing every second of the day, etc.

Maybe it's because I'm in the over 45 but I see no value in Facebook.

Anonymous said...

Casting my vote.. I use both and like to see the discussions on your site. I use Facebook to connect with my childhood friends and it has been wonderful...some I would never have found if not for this. I am also on a group that is supporting each other as we try to lose weight. It is a tool. Just like any other tool, you use it for good, leave it in the tool shed unused or you refuse to move from a shovel to the rotatiller. If we can use this to reach others for Christ, or proclaim our beliefs to let others know we are not ashamed of the Gospel then it is a good thing.

Way to go, Son of Thunder and Nathan!

C~ in Salem

son of thunder said...

We understand, hart. We really do. We're not trying to make you feel bad. I (for one)wish your situation were better so that you could connect with believers around the globe on higher level.

I know living out there in liberal Seattle wears on you with so few believers to interact with. Our prayers are with you, my friend. Just take comfort that your Face is in the Book.

Dennis said...

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations baptizing them in teh name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost.
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you and lo I am with you always even unto the end of the world Amen. Our challenge, our goal, his command, should be our desire. In this time we are all being monitored one way or another. But God is all knowing and seeing, even into the darkest or brightest depths of our heart. All faucets made available should be used to the Glory of God. Satan will be sure to use them for his Glory. To many Christians, or Churchians for to long have made excuses why can not, and made it to easy for satan to do his work. some even roll out a red carpet for him. Look around and take a bow. It only takes a few UNgodly to change things for the unbiblical worse, but many more christians to slow it down yet alone stop them, but contend for the faith we must. All will stand before Christ and give an account. MARANATHA

RF said...

To Dennis

Well said man, well said!
Amen and Amen!


To All
I am still trying to get this blogging thing down. Don't know if I am going to keep that avatar or not. What do you think?

Expected Imminently said...

Tomorrow, Tuesday 20th July 2010 -

Is the 9th of Av!?

Mark said...

Wow people are still waiting for Christ's return? Since 1830 when JN Darby coined the rapture people have been and still are being duped. He already came with the end of the world (Heb 9:26). So many Scriptural verses point to His return, over 30. I read your 50 signs and LAUGHED OUT LOUD. You state that Rev 11:8,9 points to TV. Really? How? Luke 21:26 to WMDs? Wow! Keep on deceiving the people with a false eschatology. He already came in 70ad. I am what you would call a Preterist.
All the times Our Lord said "this generation" He was TALKING to 1st century believers.
How did daniel's 70th week skip 2000 years?

Anonymous said...

Ah yes you’re one o’ them pretzelists. They twist Scripture just like a pretzel.

Christ returned in 70AD and nobody cared coz no one noticed until recently when the preterists decided it was so.

Thanks for the chuckles.

rg

DrNofog said...

Oh, Mark! Stop! too funny!...

Have you tried taking all this to Comedy Central??

I was on the floor trying to reach up to the keyboard again!!... when RG popped in with "Christ returned in 70AD and nobody cared coz no one noticed...", and I lost it again!

"He already came with the end of the world" BwaaaaaaHaaaahaaahaa!! Stop! Too much!!!

"End of the world"?... So now, in my life, I 'feel' like I'm 'floating free' in this 'wonderful' Heavenly place?... Is it Nirvana? With death, destruction, wars, disease, perversions flooding out of the "closets", Satan reigning over the kingdoms of this world...

Dude! Is that prescription stuff "they" have you on... or is it some really good 'stuff' from your friends??
Send me your email address, I may want to 'hook up' with them...

DrNofog said...

Sorry, Nathan,
You see what happens to me around the full moon cycles...
;-D

Expected Imminently said...

What a depressing start to my day, it's the 21st of July, the day after the 'woes' ended, and I hear the world ended 2000 years ago.

No one mentioned it until now. Has anyone else noticed that everything is as bad as it was on the old earth? Or is it just me?

What a let down, there's me thinking sin death and Satan would be destroyed and its ALL just the rotten same! :(

Anonymous said...

It sounds like Mark has been dieting on too much MacPherson and Demar. Not sure what MacP actually believes nowadays but he still hates Darby and pretribbers with an obsession er…I mean passion. I guess that’s the important thing. As for Gary D, I suppose he’s still trying to usher in the kingdom like a good Theonomist-preterist that he is.

It fascinates me how these guys take the plain meaning of a verse and then try to make it say something they want it to mean.

Here’s a quandary – Matt 24:21. Did Christ really mean what He said? If He did, then when did this occur historically?

rg

Anonymous said...

Did you say full moon, Doc?

No wonder I had this strange impulse to scratch behind my ear with my big toe.

rg

Nathan Jones said...

All prophecy was fulfilled in 70 AD? I have to know from a Preterist perspective how all of Zechariah 14 was fulfilled. I've been to Jerusalem twice and haven't seen the Mount of Olives having been split in two or living water flowing out of Jerusalem. Better get to Jerusalem for the Feast of Tabernacles or suffer the consequences.

The Fallacy of Preterism

DrNofog said...

LOL, rg!
No wonder Nathan is starting to refer to this place as a "sandbox".
He's only been posting 'archive' pictures of himself because I think he's been pulling allah his hair out by now with allah our antics!
;-D

Gideon said...

Mark,

You asked: How did daniel's 70th week skip 2000 years?

Easy. Israel was taken into captivity out of the land, the temple was destroyed, Jerusalem was sacked, and the nation was no more. That all took place on the 69th week.

Mark, When did Gog & Magog take place, Isaiah 17?

When was Babylon utterly destroyed by fire, and no blocks taken for building by Arabs, as Jeremiah stated? Babylon's blocks have been taken for building the city of Al Hillah in Iraq.

Anonymous said...

I went back to FilesfromToni's site. Just can't help myself I guess. Boy she(?) has a real vendetta going against the pre-trib false prophets. Glad we're not back in Tyndale's days! Some of us just might get burned at the stake...or is that steak?

Gideon, I thought of a few others but I didn't want to overwhelm Mark's allegorical powers.

rg

Anonymous said...

In your recent email asking the question "Are you on Facebook" is the following:

"This is the fourth anti-Semetic site taken down by Facebook within just a few days."

It's anti-Semitic, not anti-Semetic.

Not picking on you, just thought you should be made aware of this oversight.

DrNofog said...

Anon. said...
"...This is the fourth anti-Semetic..." "It's anti-Semitic, not anti-Semetic."

Not sure what happened here, but the direct quote from this article above is spelt correctly:
"This is the fourth anti-Semitic site taken down by Facebook within just a few days."

[PS. I used "spelt" so EI and the Brits would 'recognise' that we were referring the proper spelling of the word, and not "spelled", as of some sort of witchcraft...]

However, the term "Semite" has been much abused by Semitic Arabs, Jews, and much of the rest of the world.

Case in point:

The world famous Yosemite National Park in California has been misconstrued, and mispronounced for over 150 yrs because of the inadvertently deleted punctuations within the sketchy records of the very 1st optimistic encounter of the native Mexicans with the white explorers, which included a number of Jewish settlers.

It must be remembered that "Yo!" has been a common, familiar greeting amongst the Hispanics of the western Americas for millions of years.

It was never about a valley called "Yosemite"!

It was all about the 1st friendly "greeting"!

“Yo! Semite! - Que pasta, bro?” [sp?]

'Yosemite' will never be remembered the same, - I garrontee!
;-D

Anonymous said...

"Not sure what happened here, but the direct quote from this article above is spelt correctly:"

The article was corrected after I posted about the misspelling. I verified that the misspelling contained in the email was also in the article before I posted about the error.

If it had only been in the email I would have said nothing. But I felt that something that will no doubt be on the web for some time should not contain an error which could possibly reflect poorly on a ministry that I value. So I spoke up. It was never intended as a nitpick. The error was corrected. End of story.

Enjoyed your theory on the origins of the name Yosemite. Though "Yo!" sounds more like a Brooklyn thing to my New Yorker ears.

DrNofog said...

Anon said...
"Though "Yo!" sounds more like a Brooklyn thing to my New Yorker ears."

Glad you caught the anachronisms... although I must protest that "yo" is definitely a western "greeting amongst the

Hispanics of the western Americas"...[for possibly...'millions of years'.]
;-D