This is face 7 for 29 Faces using Spectrum Noir markers and another attempt at emulating the lovely Helen’s technique with markers. Finally using the full set of markers that Graham bought me several Christmases ago and that have mostly lain untouched, so I’m thrilled to be actually using them!
In other news ..the dilemma of the bubble. This is the bubble that surrounds us on social media. It’s partly put there by social media platforms themselves who filter our timelines and prioritise posts depending on our likes and dislikes. If you’re a Conservative supporter then posts about Jeremy Corbyn will not be featured highly, if at all, on your Facebook timeline. We also use our own filtering system and avoid or unfriend people because they have different standards or values to our own. We naturally surround ourselves with people who are likely to have a similar political outlook and religious views. Is that a good thing? Or not?
It has been pointed out that the bubble has disadvantages when social media platforms manipulate our likes and dislikes. We can begin to feel that everyone in our country or the world even, has the same belief system as us. It came as a huge surprise to many of us who voted to stay in Europe that a majority (of those who voted) wanted out. My Facebook and twitter timelines were full of Remainers and we were all preaching to the choir. The same with the American election, there didn’t seem to be any support for Trump amongst my own friends, so again it was a shock. Of course, people will vote how they’re gonna vote but the problem is that we may become complacent in our belief that our worst nightmare will never happen and because we are lulled into a false sense of our own positive outcome we may choose not to campaign or even vote.
Many of my Facebook friends are from the art community and I’ve always been incredibly impressed with the membership of Facebook art groups. Open, tolerant and non-judgemental, for the most part, they are just a joy with everyone being so supportive and protective of each other. However. being aware of the bubble danger, if I receive a friend request I don’t usually check out political or religious views before accepting. Since the shock voting results, I’ve been actively trying to step outside my bubble, be more open and learn about other’s different points of view in order that I won’t be so surprised in the future. A cross section of opinion seemed to be a healthy option. Various viewpoints now pop up on my timeline in terms of both religion and politics that are not my own and I mostly let them pass without comment even if they seem inappropriate or ignorant. Noted and move on. I don’t want to be disrespectful to other people even if they have very different opinions although I am concerned that they assume that everyone agrees with them. The more worrying alternative is that they are posting to be provocative and to cause upset and arguments.
In the last couple of weeks, I’ve experienced several what could be termed as ‘hit and run’ posts on Facebook. This is where the poster publishes a highly contentious post which is so outrageous it’s hard to ignore and then takes one of two directions when they ‘get a bite’. They either delete all comments that they don’t agree with or they become defensive and turn it around to making themselves into the persecuted victim. These interactions are upsetting and a complete waste of energy. So is the answer to only interact with the like minded? Stay safe in our own bubble? I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that, for the sake of my own mental health, that bubble is looking pretty good!