If you really believe in what you have to say about a person, then why use social media to communicate a message to him or her, especially if you have the person’s home address, email address, and/or telephone number? Because many people lack the courage to confront people directly, social media becomes vehicles for articulating their messages. What’s disconcerting about this increasing phenomenon is more people believe that Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, and etc. are the proper mediums to solve conflicts. Why not just pick up a telephone? One has to wonder, however, if people just enjoy resolving conflicts through public spaces like Facebook and Twitter to attract more attention to themselves. When you think about it, resolving conflicts at someone’s home, through email, and/or over the telephone is too private for those who desire to find any way possible to get more attention drawn to themselves.
Now, if you have already directly addressed your problems with someone and that person does not try to work with you to solve those problems, then it may be appropriate to express how you feel in general about a problem you have with someone in an indirect manner to keep you from fighting the person. If you have an established reputation of letting people know in their faces (without any hesitation) how you feel about an issue or problem when one arises, then it may be appropriate to make an indirect comment on Facebook or Twitter about the problem or issue.
Cowardice occurs through social media when a person never has addressed his or her problems with someone directly.
Some people think you’re not smart enough to know when they’re sending subliminal messages to you. They think they’re getting over on you and affecting you. However, what they don’t understand is the reason that you’ve not responded to them directly and/or punched them in the mouth is you see them as lightweights, are trying to not destroy their world for their sake and their family’s sake, and/or wish not to cause a major scene.
When people always have to promulgate indirect messages, you can tell they’re struggling with deep insecurities and self-esteem problems. Why else would they always express themselves through indirect messages?
In the time you invested in composing an indirect message, you could have already communicated a direct message by picking up a telephone? Why waste time? Go ahead and be honest—it’s not really about the indirect message you’re attempting to send to someone, but it’s more about you needing to deal with things you’re stowing on the inside of you that need to be eliminated.
You have to be careful about communicating indirect messages to someone through social media because that person could respond with a direct message to you that could surely shake up your world forever.
For every move there is a counter.
Don’t let your weak indirect messages end up causing you a lifetime of misery. You have to resolve how much you’re willing to lose when you publish tweets, statuses, and posts.
Don’t be a coward—say what you have to say to someone directly to him or her!
Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison