crowdsourced entitlement

Don’t get me wrong, I use social media. Some days, I even like social media. It’s how I keep up with several close friends and family members that don’t live nearby. At times, one picture can bring a smile or make you feel included with something happening next door or on the other side of the world. I’ve accepted, however, before then end of this exercise I’m going to sound like one of “those people.” There has a significant societal paradigm shift the last several years. Social media has, in fact, made us far less social in some regards.

But what do I mean by that?  I’ll do my best to steer clear of United Airlines in discussing it.  I know we’re sick of that example, too.

As we’re busy hating on each other from behind then safety of a screen name and avatar, wen also seem to be rapidly gaining a sense of entitlement. I blame the selfie, frankly. I’ll spare you all of the psychology behind why I think that’s true, but will sum it to say you can’t expect people to constantly take and post pictures of themselves all day and not begin to believe they’re the center of the universe. Problem is everyone can’t be the center (although in an unrelated event in Japan it seems everyone can be Snow White). It seems every time someone’s coffee isn’t refilled fast enough, the cruise line doesn’t give them a free upgrade or they’re subjected to watch someone pray in public they white on Facebook or Twitter and wait for the pilers-on to agree with them and how u justly they were treated- regardless of what the rest of the story was.

Case and point.

There was a viral story about two years ago covering the unjust service a couple received  on New Year’s Eve and how events in the restaurant made them feel unimportant.

“I will never go back to this location for New Year’s Eve! After the way we were treated when we spent $700-plus and having our meal ruined by a watching a dead person being wheeled out from an overdose my night has been ruined… The manager also told us someone dying was more important than us being there, making us feel like our business didn’t matter…”

Initially, they lady who posted her story got sympathy from people on social media. People began calling for the restaurant to make it up to her. A few days later, the manager replied with the rest of the story. It went something like this:

“First of all, the ‘overdosing junkie’ that you speak of was a 70-plus-year-old woman who had a heart attack… But I can completely understand why you think being intoxicated (expletives) that didn’t understand your bill should take priority over human life.”

This incident has a relatively happy ending. The customer who suffered a heart attack survived and the notoriety of the story help raise $15,000 towards her medical bills on GoFundMe.

The author of the Facebook post later claimed that someone hacked her account and that she is not responsible for the rude post. She then deleted her account. I wish more people would delete theirs.

It’s kind if that whole idea about “I’m not wrong just because you’re offended.” You’re not a victim just because you think you deserve better.

Images:  Top imaged sourced from Flikr Creative Commons.  

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