WTVM Editorial 4/23/17: Social media choices

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Two very different uses of social media last week illustrate the wrong way and the right way to use social media.

We can learn a lot from both.

The first example and a horrible one is the use of Facebook by admitted killer Steve Stephens from Ohio.

He's the man whose mental meltdown led him to kill an innocent elderly man and post the tragic video on Facebook.

It was the most hideous crime he could commit.

When Stevens was finally captured, he took his own life ending the fear and fascination he created by using social media to inflate his self-worth and exact revenge on others. He perverted social media for his own deadly purposes.

Now, for the second example - the polar opposite.

A use of social media that should give us all hope.

Thank goodness for this heartwarming and inspiring post by a blended family in Columbus, showing that Mom, Dad, stepmom and stepdad were united in parenting their daughter, Maelyn Player.

This is the kind of post that's worthy of going viral on Facebook.

This is the kind of message worth sharing and liking and supporting.

Mom, Clara, and her ex-husband's new wife, Emilee, along with Maelyn's dad and stepdad, explained they agreed to always focus on little Maelyn's needs, putting her first in every situation.

That shared priority on parenting is refreshing, enlightening and deserves to be applauded.

Maelyn's blended family is setting a great example in life and on social media.

The post of their picture on the soccer field took off and got them well deserved attention from all sorts of media outlets around the country.

Social media can be a wonderful thing.

It informs us and keeps us connected in ways we couldn't imagine just a few years ago.

But using it for the right reasons, and keeping the message positive and uplifting is always going to be the best choice users can make.

General Manager Holly Steuart brings two editorials a week to WTVM. If you would like to respond to an editorial, e-mail your response to hsteuart@wtvm.com or write to:

WTVM Editorial Committee

1909 Wynnton Road

Columbus, GA 31906

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