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Free Speech?

The rantings of a mad woman

By Sara WilsonPublished 2 months ago 5 min read
Top Story - February 2024
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I try and keep my mouth shut a lot of them time when conversations arise about social or political issues. It's hard, but I really do try. Lord knows I have spent countless days in Facebook prison for speaking my mind, or even making jokes. My account has been restricted for "misinformation" and "bullying". I even once spent a week in Facebook lockdown for sharing an article about a potential sequel to the movie, Home Alone. Not even sure how that one happened.

When I break down the reasons I have been locked up, it's really quite stupid. I spent 30 days in Facebook jail for saying I wanted to punch my car for breaking down. My... car. Let that sink in. Is that "violence"? Harrassment"? "Bullying"? Maybe, according to the computers that now decide everything in the land of Facebook. My sister even did her own 30 day lock down for saying she would karate chop me. As a joke. Facebook really acts like it doesn't like violence. This should be a good thing, right?

The question I have lies here-

The amount of people I have reported for actual violence or rule breaking never seems to matter to the Facebook gods. I always get a notification saying whatever I reported "Does not go against community standards". For context, things I have reported have been videos of people killing animals, people threatening to light police officers on fire, people telling me they would come to my house and murder my family over a difference in opinion- things like that. It's gotten ugly for sure. How is it that me threatening to punch my car is "violence", but people threatening death to my children isn't? Nothing makes sense anymore and bullying runs rampant over the stupidest of things.

As a woman online, I have been told by men that they want to rape me or do other vile and disgusting things, mostly sexual- simply because I comment on some article or something. I have been told to kill myself for not agreeing with someone else's opinion. I have been shamed to no end in mom groups. I grew up in a time where it was normal in movies to bully people, and it was even considered cool. I even was bullied in school to a certain degree. But never in my life have I been bullied the way I am today on the internet. Every time I say anything online, the foul comments roll in. I usually just block wheoever and try not to engage, but it's harder when they bring my kids into whatever situation. I have even had people steal pictures from my profile and post them to talk down on my kids (who at the time were all under the age of 5). I have since made all of my kids photos private- but that's really not the point. How is any of this ok?

How is it Facebook can seek and destroy political opinions that go against their own beliefs but can't stop people from actually threatening people? How is it they can delete and alter posts- but child pornography can't be removed?

"It's just free speech", they say. The internet is a mess. I am so grateful for the few people I have met and adored (often times more so than people in my real life) but the rest of the people online are completely unhinged. Half of the stuff they say, they wouldn't dare say without the protection of a phone or computer screen between themselves and their target. I have never been so over anything in my entire life.

When did politics become such a taboo topic? What happened to the days where people could agree to disagree and not hate each other or "cancel" someone for their opinion? What is going on in the world? Why is everyone being forced to "choose a side" and why is only one side the right side? Who decided we all have to think one way and why do we allow it to continue? How does the whole world not see that it's just a stage? It's all fake and none of it matters... No one is coming to save you because you did what they told you to. Politicians don't care about you or me. They care about money and status. Same with celebrities. They don't care about any of us. They never go to jail for breaking laws or having their names on certain lists or doing drugs on a live stream. Laws don't apply to any of them. Only us. So why are we hating eachother over the opinions of these assholes? Why are we bullying each other for our opinions on the potentially less evil political candidate? They all suck and usually don't deliver on whatever promises they make.

Remember in school when people would run for class president and promise ridiculous things like putting Gatorade into all the school water fountains? That's todays politicians. Making radical promises and never really delivering. They just fill a seat. They don't actually make the rules. It's all a show. Yet, we all end up hating each other because of them... in fact, I sometimes feel I might possibly be one of the most hated people in the world because I don't cater to any political side or candidate- so both sides hate me. It's really such a strange time to be alive.

But yeah- social media is so amazing- we get to stay in touch with our families, and share photos of our lives, and see our friends from all over the world, right? That's what it's made for... right? Now tell me- is that what your newsfeed is full of? Because mine sure the hell isn't. Mine is filled with nonsense pandering to political candidates, Taylor Swift, and ads to buy a bunch of crap I thought about but never said out loud. I would compare Facebook to the junk ads that used to come through the mail when I was a kid. Garbage. It's only getting worse. Frankly, I only stay for the memes.

Anyways, I'm done now. Rant over.

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About the Creator

Sara Wilson

Lover of the strange and unusual. I write mostly horror or true crime. I occasionally publish other things, but try not to write only for the sake of having content. Feedback is always welcome and appreciated!

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Comments (20)

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  • Dr. Kriss2 months ago

    Say YES to X

  • JOSIAH NWOKO2 months ago

    NICE

  • Rachel Deeming2 months ago

    Such a lot of truth here. I agree with practically everything you said. I don't know what's happened to respecting other people's opinions. It's like educated discussion can't take place anymore without people being offended. I don't like it at all. I use social media for sharing my work, keeping in touch with friends and scrolling when bored. But to be honest, I don't find it very interesting then and turn to a book instead. It is worrying that Facebook are not taking your contacting them seriously though. I do not like that.

  • Phil Flannery2 months ago

    Can't argue with any of that. For me, except for sharing memes I think are funny, Facebook is just for Vocal Social Society. My wife isn't on it, my IT expert son isn't on it and my daughters got off it years ago. You're not crazy, you're frustrated and angry, and rightly so.

  • Back to say congratulations on your Top Story! 🎉💖🎊🎉💖🎊

  • Laura Lann2 months ago

    Really great points! There's a lot in SM systems to improve and see get better. There is so much actual violence perpetuated online that is not stopped, and women are much more likely to experience it. I will say, I think the rise in political divide has gotten louder due to policies being pushed in many states that remove the rights of individuals. To really see change, we need more than two options. Our current system makes all third party votes useless unfortunately. And we need those in place to seek solutions, not sound bites.

  • Caroline Craven2 months ago

    I think it's such a shame when social media can do so much good.... but then people choose to use their powers for evil! I long for the days when you knew what your mates were having for dinner and nobody got triggered! Great article.

  • Kenny Penn2 months ago

    You are definitely not alone. Both sides demonize the other in the media and Facebook makes it worse. It seems like the hate never ends online and people say some of the worst shit to each other over political garbage that doesn’t even matter

  • Paul Stewart2 months ago

    Perfectly put and perfectly said and you are not alone. It's why I am glad I don't use my Facebook account. Sorry you've had that experienced, but well done on this wonderful rant and congrats on Top Story. People are morons and fickle.

  • Chloe2 months ago

    yep. i can see which side you're coming from (through things not mentioned), and I've discovered through MINIMAL online life that the internet becomes like a pack of ravaging dogs whenever you try to say that you don't agree with someone else's beliefs. it's CRAZY. the unprecedented doxxing and threats and "being a bigot" comments that you get for just disagreeing with something are insane. all that being said, i would never survive one day on facebook. fantastic rant otherwise.

  • Great article. I can definitely relate! I have been on the verge of deleting my FB account many times, but it does have some value, so I keep it. I stay clear (mostly) of political arguments. It just isn't worth the headache. Arguing with stupid people is impossible. As Mark Twain famously quipped, “Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience." When I have allowed myself to get into those types of debates, I could feel my brain cells being sapped away!

  • Mackenzie Davis2 months ago

    Ahh we would be good friends irl. I’ve been wanting to write something similar to this, yet I feel you captured all my feelings, lol! I feel so much relief after reading. So many things to say but I love that I’m not alone. Fantastic pick for TS. 💜💜💜

  • Carol Townend2 months ago

    I agree. I've found fakes posing as celebrities. I even had a fake stalk me portraying one of favorite celebrities who I have actually spoken to online, and now classes me as a friend because I was introduced to him through my husband who looked after him in a healthcare setting. The person faking him was able to come back and do it again, several times, using that celebrities name in different ways, and even his photo. In truthfulness, some users do use punching material things as a form of violence, but places like facebook do need to put it in context, because there is a difference between threating purposeful violence and threatening to 'punch' your car because you are annoyed. Also, like you, I too have found people can make some sick threats to others and get away with it.

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    Bloody well said. FB is nuts. I've been sent to their jail a couple of times as well, but not for long periods. last time was very similar to one of yours. I jokingly told my SIL to punch my brother. Banned for 3 days. Sorry for the threats you've received and the fact nobody wants to do anything about it. Congrats on the TS.

  • L.C. Schäfer2 months ago

    Back to say Well done on T.S.!

  • Omgggg, tell me about it! The actual things that they should take actions against and ban, they'll let roam free and have free reign. But the absolute opposite of community guidelines violation would be put in Facebook jail. I just am so speechless!

  • Lamar Wiggins2 months ago

    I think this rant is justified, absolutely! The nerve of being reprimanded for talking about your car. Unbelievable! It's all maddening! When does it stop? Unfortunately, it won't until all the haters have had that bubble burst in their face, just ask some of the people who were arrested for Jan 6th. It took their arrest for them to realize how wrong and stupid it was to take the fall for someone who never cared about them. So sad... Loved your rant! Keep enjoying the memes.

  • A little hyperbolic, not quite universally true, but close enough to be excusable. I do have to ask, did someone really threaten you &/or your family & Facebook refused to take it down? Because that's not only not protected free speech (the person can actually be prosecuted just for making the threat), it is also a direct violation of Facebook's own standards & policies, at least according to what they've said. At any rate, rant well accomplished. It is good to get it out of the system periodically.

  • L.C. Schäfer2 months ago

    Excuse me, are you me? 🤔

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