John D Radcliff, Specializing in Interactive Technology & Education!

How digital technology has changed U.S. politics and the workplace

    It is interesting how digital media influences politics and the work force.  Take for example the waitress in Charlotte North Carolina who was fired for posting a distasful topic about how a couple stayed at her table for 3 hours and left a $5 tip.  After the owners of the company saw this post on Facebook, they later called her in a fired her for violating company policies against speaking ill of customers and depicting the restaurant negatively on social networking sites.  The other example is the shooting of the Arizona governor and how the media has turned this tragedy into a political free for all.  Lead journalists and bloggers stated that Palin’s gun-target map is to blame for the shooting of the Arizona Governor. 

    Others, suggest the shooting is being gamed by Democrats, and perhaps a plot by extreme ‘left’ politicos.  So if it wasn't for Facebook would the waitress of still kept her job?  If the media was limited to only a certain number of broadcasting platforms, would the tragedy in Arizona be honored?  Is the mass media now the judge, jury and executioner? 

    I think it is funny how social media sites were intended to share and transmit information to people.  Facebook was a vision by Mark Zuckerberg who wanted people to make connections and share their lives with other people online.  Not to be used as a big brother tool by employers who could fire or not higher a person over a Facebook post.  Now what the waitress did in North Carolina I agree was stupid but we have employers using social media sites to decided whether they will hire someone based on what they have on their social media sites.  Where do we draw the line when it comes to this type of monitoring of people's behavior?  Or allowing the left and right wing politicians start basing each other over the shooting of a state governor? 

    The upside to the Arizona incident is how people have united and blasted back stating how ridicoulous the left and right wing extremists are using this tragic incident as a political bassing opportunity.  The problem is the damage is already done and it will take some good PR for the two parties to come back in favor in the public eye.  This happened with Dell when a customer got upset about how they received a defective laptop and poor customer service when they tried to return it.  They posted their complaint online in a forum where other people started sharing their own horror stories about Dell.  Dell quickly responded by developing their own forum and started to address these customer complaints.  I think this should be the same style for anything policital were people can turn the bull horn around and make the people in politics responsible for their actions.

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