Should One Tweet End A Career?

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By now we’ve all heard about Roseanne’s “Big Twitter Mistake” and subsequent firing. More shocking than the nature of Roseanne’s ugly tweet was her immediate firing from ABC. Just like that hundreds of jobs were tanked and one of the greatest comeback stories in television history came to a grinding halt.

I’ve never been a huge fan of the groundbreaking comic, but I respect her talent. While I never did watch the reboot, I found it impressive that Roseanne was able to make crowd-pleasing comedy in a completely different day and age than the one that made her famous.

Times have changed drastically since she first debuted “Roseanne”. One thing that has been uniquely disruptive is the advent of social media. It has turned out to be Roseanne’s downfall. All of it has me asking:

Should one tweet ruin a person’s career?

When it comes to Roseanne, the situation is a lot more nuanced than the question. But let me answer the question before I delve into what happened to the sitcom star.

The answer, of course is NO. Social media has given us the opportunity to share our thoughts and experiences instantaneously. While President Bill Clinton had to lie about smoking marijuana to get elected, we now live in a time where most young people are documenting every dumb decision and action. Being able to witness the bad behavior we all used to keep between friends has lowered our moral standards for our leaders.

Simultaneously (and very bizarrely) social media has driven us more towards a culture of perfection. It isn’t perfection of the body, but perfection of thought. Social media is able to instantaneously gin up the mob mentality and many have taken that as an opportunity to shut down people and avenues of thought they don’t like.

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