Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, TV and the rest of the media: How the wrong information shapes your opinion out of thin air and stunts personal and financial growth.
Every day, countless amounts of people consume media. They take it in and almost always believe it without cross-referencing sources. Here’s an example of how it’s so harmful. If someone has garbage information, they are left with a garbage opinion and then they inflect that opinion on others. When we are talking about online information, this usually means opinions left in comments. It starts a cycle and propagation of bad information.
It is so important to know what you are talking about before you give your opinion on something. I see so many people with 9 posts or 8 followers with big opinions on Instagram and Facebook. They also haven’t posted anything since last year. I am a strong believer in social media in general, I just like it used in a way that propagates good information by practitioners.
To make matters worse, people inherently have fear of the unknown. In social situations, some people are afraid to speak first. In small businesses, many don’t want to spend enough on R&D. There is always a mental roadblock, which leads back to why not to do something rather than to take action. The key takeaway is many rely too heavily on other people to make their own informed decisions.
“Primary research is becoming substantially less used today to get new information because of the disproportionate amount of opinions we get from others.”
Innovation is based on testing new or unique approaches. Because of its shallow history, it makes it difficult to gain momentum on new ideas. If you ask where I get my information, it isn’t because I read one article or watch a video on YouTube.
I see, record, react and learn information every day through many lenses as well as my own. It’s the information you get through your own lens that’s called Primary Research. Some people may have learned that term during their studies in school. Others may have heard about it in passing. Primary research is when you go out and get the information from the field or from the source. The problem is, because there is so much information available within arms reach, most do not do enough of this type of research.
Now this isn’t to say you shouldn’t get information from other people, it simply means you should verify that information with what is going on in the present moment, whether that be through multiple pieces of secondary research such as video, audio and copy, or through your own primary research.
As a result of the information we get bombarded with every day, we must make it a point to not only double and triple check information, but to be more open minded and try new things. We must step outside our comfort zone to grow and learn, and we must be willing to take risks to make substantial financial and personal gains as long as we are sure we have the best information currently available.