Parenting in A Social Media World Part 1

This video was making the rounds on Facebook last week. I shared it to my wall without comment.  I wasn’t really sure what to say. Watch it, then we’ll talk more.

So I have mixed feelings. First off, I suspect as with any story, there is more to this than meets the eye. I’m not going to pass judgement on this guy one way or the other. When I see examples of how others parent typically I try and learn from their experiences. Would I do this? Probably not.  Are there days when my kids frustrate me beyond a breaking point? Um, yeah welcome to parenthood.  Have I done or said things that I’ve later thought better of? Most definitely.  Would I have wasted a perfectly good laptop? No.  I would have wiped it clean and donated it to a charity.

The father’s name is Tommy Jordan and his Facebook wall is public. It is worth going to see the follow up and fall out from the video going viral.   He’s been visited by the police and Child Protective Services, major news outlets have contacted him and he’s being impersonated on Facebook and across the Internet.

This update is taken from his Facebook page, but I was unable to find it. Stupid timeline!

His take

I’m NOT a hero… of ANY kind… at all.

I’m not a super-dad, or awesome parent.

I’m a normal guy with reasonable a moral compass that I try very hard to keep pointed north. I make a LOT of mistakes. Did I say a LOT? I mean a WHOLE lot! Daily… sometimes hourly!

and later

You guys caught me on eight and a half minutes of ONE day in my life, probably the worst day in my life as a father.

To me, that is the rub.  We caught nothing but a snippet of his life, an eight and half minute glimpse. A commentator on my wall suggested he might be in it for the publicity.  We’ll never know for sure, but that’s not the vibe I get.  He does have a book on cloud computing, but there is only minimal mention of it in his most recent posts.  He does however raise funds for the local Muscular Dystrophy of America Chapter and since the video going viral he’s raised close to $5,000.

I love this comment:

“PS: CBS just called and offered us our own show. The ceiling of absurdity has just been reached.”

What has our society come to? Let’s review shall we? We have a 15 year old girl who pushes her boundaries. We have a father at his wits end who in a moment of frustration takes extreme action against an inanimate object (albeit an expensive one), video tapes the violence video tapes the violence and posts it YouTube.

Suddenly, the video is everywhere and this event is “news”. The man is at turns vilified and called a hero.  He is, by many, raised up on a pedestal. He refuses the promotion to deity and calls bullshit on all the attention and uses the spotlight to raise money for a good cause. There are worse ways to use your fifteen minutes of fame.

When the dust settles they go on with their lives (since he declined the whole T.V. show thing). The ultimate question is did his daughter learn anything from the experience? Someone with a far more analytical mind than mind will have a ball with this once the dust settles.

What do you think of the whole thing? Have you ever done anything like this?  Would you?


One thought on “Parenting in A Social Media World Part 1

  1. I saw this on your facebook page and at first did not know what to say. Your added information is interesting. My gut feeling is that actions speak louder than words and his actions were a bit extreme and her words were harsh. Kids will lash out. What would he have done if he read it in her diary? Or sent a note around school? I know that is not as public, but one upping her action is not what I think is in the best interest of the situation. I think it just esculates things. He could have made all the same rules for her and punishments without using a gun. I just don’t like the fact that he used a gun to make his point. So many people are doing really stupid things with guns and accidents happen or worse poor choices are made. I wonder how the daughter reacted to it or how about her mom (did she know what he was going to do? What did she think about it?)

    Enough said- I think I could go on for awhile, but I should do some other stuff.


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