When Teens Wish They Could “Unpost” (Interview with Jonathan McKee)

Have you ever regretted something you posted on social media? Don’t feel bad, 57% of Americans who use social media have posted something they regret afterwards. And that’s just adults. Now jump into the brain of a 10-year-old. Yes, a 10-year-old. Nielsen research labels age 10 the “mobile adoption sweet spot” because the average age a child receives a smartphone today is 10.3 years-old. How is a 10-year-old supposed to make wise decisions with social media like Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook? (especially when COPPA—Child Online Privacy Protection Act—regulates that you have to be at least 13 to be on Snapchat, Instagram or Facebook). Young people don’t think for more than 3 seconds before they hit SEND. Sadly, the pics they post, the rants they engage in… even the offhand comments they make… often have dire consequences. In law enforcement we deal with the fallout of these posts daily. If you’re familiar with our work here at ColdCaseChristianity.com, you know how important we think it is to equip and prepare the next generation of Christian Case Makers. Part of this mission is to help young Christians understand how to navigate social media and post wisely in an insecure world. To help do this, I thought I’d ask the guy who literally just wrote the book on it.

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Trend Forecasts for 2012

I’ve never been big on making predictions for any particular New Year. I suppose it has something to do with not wanting to be wrong, but 2012 seems different (and it’s not just because the Mayan calendar has the world ending on December 21). Because there are so many significant global trends that seem to be converging in a way that could produce more change and opportunity than any of us have seen in quite some time, I’m very interested in the future.

So, for what they’re worth, here are seven “trend forecasts” for 2012, and why I think they matter:

1. The 2012 U.S. elections will be contentious and bitterly fought (like it takes a genius to predict this one). We’ve all been disheartened at the way the political process has been working in the last few years, and the elections in 2012 may hit a new low point.
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Social Media Slips

Say what you will about the positives of social media (and certainly there are quite a few positives), but near the top of the negative column has got to be social media’s propensity for gaffes, slips, and careless no-filter missteps.

Social media (Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc) operates under the real-time logic of “share what’s on your mind NOW” bite-sized communication. It favors non-reflective pronouncements and emotional rants, and abhors the slow-down-let’s-think-about-this mindset which might cause someone to (heaven forbid) think twice about posting an update. As a result, people are frequently tweeting before they think about the ramifications. High-profile politicians are not immune (think Anthony Weiner), nor are celebrities (Chris Brown, Glenn Beck, etc).

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Finding Connection in the OT

Life is noisy. Life is loud. Life is fast. To find solitude, peace and quiet is like trying to find water in the Sahara Desert.   Too often it seems that any ‘down time’ we might have, we fill with internet surfing, social media chatter or any use of our cell phones. We’ve been told these gadgets will help us stay more connected to friends and family and yet, these things and more seem to only isolate individuals, creating little islands of wandering souls constantly seeking connection but never fully attaining it.

This past summer I began reading through entire books of the Old Testament. I was captivated by the stories I read and by the way the Lord was fully active in their lives.

Isaiah experienced the God who completely engages with every one of Isaiah’s senses. First, Isaiah sees God.  He then hears singing unto the Lord on his throne. He felt the ground shake as the glory of God was upon him. He smells and tastes the smoke that filled the temple. Immediately upon seeing and experiencing this, Isaiah confesses his sins before the Lord. And then something incredible happens. The Lord touches Isaiah’s lips with a hot coal, atoning for his sin and making him clean. At this, God reveals his mission and Isaiah accepts the call to follow him. How could you not after an encounter such as that? Isaiah reminded me to be aware of my culture and to pray for my people. (Is. 62:6,7).
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A graph for 2009...

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  >>  I scanned this from my notebook at work:

Social Media Graph

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