IN 2011 when I went on council, Facebook and other social platforms were largely unused by my generation and the workings of council were largely unknown within the community.
News was passed by word of mouth and the local paper and we rarely checked if it was factual.
Life seemed simpler and happier.
Today, we are unsettled by politics, division seems rife in the town and the ills of the community have been laid at the feet of a few, which few depends on the point of view.
The overarching sentiment is it was all fine before Facebook, The Herald and an outspoken minority.
I disagree.Read more
What we have today is the teething pains of a community entering an era of instant communication.
Like children, we are learning the boundaries, the limits of privacy, what is newsworthy and what is mischief; we are learning to moderate our delivery and be more kind.
And, we are learning quickly.
If we consider the first forays into the brave new world of social media which were dominated by rage, profanity, gossip and nastiness, then we have made significant gains.
We now engage in mostly informed debate. Information is shared and current.
Most now understand how they are governed. Voices can be heard.
We find our missing pets, get great bargains and we assist each other.
Most of all, we are interacting on a level never seen before and no one is excluded.
No, it isn’t as simple, but it is more truthful as less is hidden.
Old values and new technology are merging, and we will be richer for it.
There may be some bruising in the transition but it will be worth it.