For the past 3 months I have been a Rho Mu (Recruitment Mentor) for sorority recruitment. What this has entailed was being completely disaffiliated from my chapter. It was as if I had never even been apart of the Greek community- everything from the letters on my shirts, to my bio on my Twitter account couldn’t have anything to do with Delta Zeta. I think any Rho Mu would tell you that it wasn’t easy, especially when it came to social media. Our job as a Rho Mu required us to unlike, and unfollow our chapters accounts on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, as well as take down any pictures or posts that had even the slightest inclination that we were apart of xyz sorority.
Yesterday was bid day, and the Rho Mu’s were finally able to reveal to their PNM (Potential New Member) groups what their affiliation was. Immediately after the sorority women finished the big reveal, my social media blew up with notifications. Throughout the night my timeline purely consisted of photos, status’, tweets and friend requests from DZ new members, and friends from other sororities. Women expressed their joy and how proud they were of their sisters, and as weird as it may seem, I loved it. While I’m sure a good majority of all the Rho Mu’s and sorority women’s friends on Facebook and followers on Twitter got annoyed with all of the pictures and “I love my sorority!” tweets, it didn’t matter for the day.
I love social media because of the positivity it can bring. For example, yesterday I saw so many women congratulating each other on a great recruitment, and expressing how much their sorority meant to them on their Facebooks and Twitters. My favorite forms of social media are Facebook and Twitter, and I use my accounts mainly to express positive thoughts. I am friends with family members who I don’t get to see often and I like to keep in touch with them and update them on my life with the click of a button. Last night I posted a Facebook status about how I would be serving as president of my sorority in the upcoming year, and I was overjoyed to finally let my friends and family that live far away hear the exciting news. I like using Facebook and Twitter to post quick, meaningful posts, and I think often times it’s the meaningful or inspirational posts that make social media such a positive thing.
While social media can be used positively, I have seen it used in a negative context far too many times. This is where I get nervous with sites like Facebook and Twitter. Because people are hiding behind a computer screen it is easier to say hurtful or degrading things to both individuals we do and do not know. I don’t like the fact that tools that are meant to be useful to us are taken out of context and used to bully, or hurt others. It makes me nervous to know that some day my kids, or friends today could be affected by hurtful and negative things that are said via social media. Additionally, in the light of all of the recruitment festivities, new member celebrations and date parties that are quickly approaching, social media makes me nervous for the Greek community. I believe many individuals don’t realize how detrimental posting a photo of underaged drinking, or drinking in letters can be for their chapter, or for their future. I think it’s scary to think that even if something is “deleted” on social media, it can always come back to haunt you some day.
I think the fact that we live in a world that is constantly changing especially with technology is both really cool, and terrifying. Over the past few years, my habits with Facebook have declined because of the other types of social media that have been born. Since coming to college I have noticed a steady increase in my usage of Twitter and Pinterest, and sometimes it seems almost addicting. With my social media class, I hope to learn how to use more professional social media sites like LinkedIn, as well as have fun learning new things about the social media tools I already use.
Check out the photos below to see a few things from my week of recruitment and last nights social media.