I opened the week writing about Colin Kaepernick, whose confidential settlement with the NFL has sparked speculation and (as is usual for anything involving him) controversy. I raised the issue of owners being on record as having been strong-armed by President Trump. I believe the matter needs to be investigated further and that this is the way for us all to find out exactly what happened.
Alfred Nfared Vines wrote:
There’s so much that we don’t know that I’m sure could put a lot of people in the hot seat… Here’s the problem though.. And we continue to see it. The President and the NFL can not be stopped because of rich privilege. The NFL will pay out (as they did with the CTE settlement of a billion dollars), but their deep pockets will allow them to continue with their racism and disregard for NFL players. 45 has done everything possible to make him the perfect candidate for impeachment (and honestly exile from this country), but not enough is being done to stop him, and because of his privilege, my fear is that he won’t be stopped unless we can get him in 2020.
I do think the privilege of the wealthy is protecting the NFL and the President, and I think it will take a lot of heavy lifting for either of them to get what’s coming to them. How powerful what Kaepernick was up against is one of the reasons I’m not cosigning the people trying to make him look greedy or weak for taking that settlement and signing the NDA. Each NFL team is a billion-dollar concern. It’s unfair to put fighting all of them on one man. Asking Kaepernick to give up the wages he lost is also unfair. As I microblogged on Instagram, he doesn’t owe his supporters his future and demanding it from him is way over the line. I haven’t been shy about criticizing Kaepernick when it’s warranted, but I think he’s being held to an outlandishly unreasonable standard. People who should know better are WILDING about this.
I don’t think anything short of full-throated federal investigations can get to the bottom of all this and hold the wrongdoers responsible. You’re right that it might not be enough… There’s a way institutions are being undermined and made less effective by Trump’s policies, and it’s flying under the radar, because sensational stories take precedence on the news. The Patriots’ owner, Robert Kraft, getting caught in a sex trafficking sting in Florida at least shows that NFL owners are not completely outside the reach of the law. They can be touched.
Instagram is definitely a surprisingly rewarding platform for writers, and I discovered that some months ago when a piece I wrote about Lena Dunham went viral for the second time, and readers were not only eager to read it, but admitted that they joined Medium just to be able to access my work!
I still have to figure out ways to be more creative with my posts, but I do find Instagram to be a refreshing alternative.
Lucero Cantu shared:
I’ve very recently gotten into microblogging or even sharing excerpts from posts as Instagram posts. It is fascinating how receptive people are to it given the platforms visual and quick nature.
I find Instagram much less stressful emotionally than other social media sites. Maybe it’s because I’m not in the visuals business. I think if I were posting selfies and thirst traps, I’d be more exposed to the toxic side of the platform. I also think people are more discriminating about what accounts they follow on Instagram and aren’t as quick with the follow-back. People curate their feeds more carefully than they do on Twitter. It’s also harder to create content. It takes more effort. There being only ONE active link — in your bio — also limits people. You have to think about your Instagram content in a way you don’t on other sites where it’s easier to shoot from the hip and get cheap engagement. There’s also no equivalent to a retweet — you have to download a whole separate app to put someone else’s post in your feed. It’s harder for rubbish to spread. That might be why it’s a bit calmer over there. In addition, all the difficulties means people’s attention is “stickier” on Instagram.
Matthew Smith wrote:
Oh great, now I actually have a reason to use Instagram after swearing I’d never use it. Damn me and my open mind.
Thank you so much for sharing this! :)
I think every writer trying to build an audience should give microblogging on Instagram a try. The difficulty is finding a strategy that allows you to be consistent. There are some large accounts that post the exact same stock photo every day and microblog in the captions. It’s a strange ecosystem with more room than I thought there was for writers.
I was thinking about social media a lot this week (particularly considering the Jussie Smollett situation and all the irresponsible reporting surrounding it), and I also wrote about the pressure to have an opinion on everything. Ezinne Ukoha chimed in:
This is real. I happen to have varied interests and I write the way I wrote before the madness. I’m from a different time, so luckily those instincts prevent me from being victimized by this climate. There are moments of confusion for sure, but I try to regain control.
There’s a generational divide on social media. I grew up before the age of social media, and I’m eternally grateful. It is mad. It’s useful and powerful. But it’s mad. And it’s only getting crazier as all the disinformation and propaganda steps up. One of the ways I’m managing my social media use (and my mental health) is training myself to withhold my opinion. I don’t have to have a hot take on absolutely everything. The trap of social media is instant gratification. Shutting up sometimes is a way of practising patience for me.
Marley K. shared:
I find myself a lot more restrained having been an employer and screener of employees for a long time. Also, my partner is a background investigator so over the past few years, I’ve learned a lot about how the alphabet boys spy on us. I much more reserved than I should be, but it’s because as always — I have inside information lol. Something we should pass on.
We are being constantly surveiled, and more people need to act like it. I’m prepared to stand by everything I post on social media. I don’t think enough people are. They use it too casually, like they’re at the water cooler at work. It’s all much deeper and sinister. I’m careful about what I post too, but I also see social media as a way of being able to put myself on the record as being for and against certain things. We’re living through a time of immense upheaval. I don’t want to there to be any mistakes about what I stood for after I’m gone. Social media gives me a way to make my positions clear.
Thanks for reading!