But that isn’t What I Meant!

Ever See A Fire Picture That Requires More Than 140 Characters To Explain?

When posting to a social media site remember this simple rule: A picture is worth a thousand words and it is very difficult to correct or change that message with only 140 characters.

Just recently I saw a photo posted on one of the social media sites in which a half dozen firefighters appeared to be advancing a hose line into a house that was totally involved. If ever called for, the situation should have been a surround and drown defensive strategy. (Not pictured here for obvious reasons)

I did not respond for fear that I was missing a proper explanation and the photo was not representing what appeared to be a rather gross lack of common sense and/or training. The posting did not provide an adequate explanation and on its face the picture was very telling.

The point is that in this day and age of instant worldwide exposure via Facebook, Twitter, etc. etc. there is a tendency to submit things personally as if you are communicating with some friend who is standing next to you. The images are exposed literally to everyone in the world and I’ll be willing to bet that while a majority may be nice people factually a tiny percent personally know you and a smaller percent have any clue as to the posting’s “back” story.

In this day when everyone is a critic and everyone has a camera we in the fire service are already two steps behind the public relations curve so there is no need to shoot ourselves in the PR foot. Careful what you say and most importantly careful of what you show.

Pete Adams
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