Chain-status is what used to be chain letters-those that we
got in the mail telling us to copy and send to people whom we knew. Now in the age of social media,
Facebook is a popular place to play the chain status game!
For lack of a better term,
this is what I'm presently calling the -lately fashionable- copy and paste status (plural!) which ask you
to repeat the same statement over and over. These are similar to the chain letters you received and read
back in the old days, when you had to copy the content by hand and then send them to seven, fifteen, or
twenty-three people you knew, and where the failure to do so would result in something horrible happening
to you and your loved ones. As soon as we opened our own email accounts around the early 90s, this kind
of chain -something- started to invade our inbox's valuable storage space. Chain emails come in different
shapes and forms, but they all say the same thing: "Pass this along to six friends, good luck will happen
to you within two weeks. Pass it along to nine friends, you will receive good luck in one week, twelve
friends....three days, and, fifteen friends...tomorrow." What a single-level marketing scheme that was,
capped by the additional touch at the end, "Do not delete this email without forwarding it, or bad fortune
will touch upon your family and loved ones." (Just in case you didn't love your family!)
We are now in the age of social media, and Facebook is a popular place to play the chain status game,
as you and I have seen the copy-n-paste, "if you read this and are ..." for example. The good thing is,
because it has the poster's name on it, there is no threat in such statements -no, "if you don't pass this
along, then today will be your doomsday."
Most of these chain status are nice and sweet, for they praise certain people
- moms, dads, teachers, soldiers, and others who deserve recognition- and contain no tiny url to click; therefore,
they are not harmful to anyone. Depending on the nature of the statement, though, you may find it irrelevant or
even annoying. But it's alright: in live streaming, like Facebook updates, things move down and off the newsfeed
rather quickly, especially if you have a lot of friends. There's no reason to be irritated, except when the same
person does it often enough for you to notice. -Even then, let it go, if you can. :-)
It's the other kind of chain status that I do not appreciate- the kind that contains a false statement
-with, or without a tiny url- and asks you to generate by posting and re-posting. This kind usually plays on your concern.
For example, it might talk about someone collecting your contact info for commercial purposes. This is nothing compared to
a false statement regarding a missing child, or a kidnapping. One way this kind of hoax can start is by a person creating an event.
Facebook generates it as it does every other event. Soon, concerned people like you and me spot it and start inviting our friends
to join and take action. Like other hoaxes, we never know where they started, but the Internet is viral, and within minutes the
information reaches every household.
When you see something like this, the best way to find out whether it's a real thing or a hoax is to do an Internet search.
Use Google, Bing or other search engines to see what shows up under it. Checking
Snopes -Urban legend reference page is also never a bad idea.
What you post is your responsiblity. Act responsibly, and always find out your source
before you post. This way, you will not only keep yourself (and your mind) out of harm's way, but you will also save your
We are an American father who has lived many years in Thailand, a Thai mother who has lived many years in the United States,
and four children- the eldest born in America- who spent the first parts of their lives in Thailand and then moved to the USA.
This multiculturalism provides a unique perspective and affords each of us the opportunity to approach things from new directions.
We follow our hearts wherever they take us. We also believe in sharing. If another is enriched then so, too, are we,
for the betterment of one is the betterment of us all. We share our ideas, thoughts, knowledge and opinions with the hope
that others will find value in them, as well as in the hope that they will pay it forward to make the world a continually better place.