Wednesday, April 16, 2014

How to Use the Interwebs Like a Mormon

I love to write (don't know if you can tell), and I have put some of my stories online. When I started doing that, I made the decision to only write clean, uplifting, or moral things. This applied to more sites than just Facebook. Wherever I am on the web, I want people to be able to say, "Oh, yeah, that sounds like something a Mormon would say."

Part of this reasoning comes from the fact that the internet is far less forgiving than our Savior. I found that everything that you want permanent online often disappears, and nothing you want deleted is ever permanently gone. Consequences of online actions can still haunt us long after we've repented.

The other day, I read this in Alma 12:14. "For our words will condemn us, yea, all our works will condemn us; we shall not be found spotless; and our thoughts will also condemn us; and in this awful state we shall not dare to look up to our God; and we would fain be glad if we could command the rocks and the mountains to fall upon us to hide us from his presence." Every aspect of our lives will be judged, including our Facebook page. We cannot think that what we do online is an exception to this rule.

So here are a few guidelines that Sister Johnson uses.

1. Don't get in arguments online. Calm discussions are fine, but fights aren't fun and give you lingering negative feelings, even if you win.

2. Use uplifting language. Don't swear, don't tell dirty jokes, and don't post negative things about others. Let your permanent internet things be good things.

3. Monitor your pictures. Just like choosing to wear modest clothing, there is a way to present yourself modestly in photos. Does your picture say, "Cute," or does it say, "Sexy?" Be honest with yourself. Sexy is inappropriate.

4. Use your computer in a public place. If you would be embarrassed for your family or others to see what you're doing or reading online, you probably shouldn't be there. Use that to your advantage to protect yourself spiritually.

5. Put a name on what you say, even if it's not your real name. You may feel that what you do or say as an anonymous user doesn't hurt you, but this is a lie sponsored by Satan. A mask of anonymity often tempts people to do things they wouldn't normally do, like cyber-bullying. So make an account and sign in.

6. Follow church pages and channels so uplifting, edifying things will appear on your newsfeeds. All of the apostles have Facebook pages now, and there's a Mormon Channel on YouTube. The internet is cool now because you can see what you want to and not see what you don't want to.

Now watch this: Bullying: Stop It

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