What do you do when your social networks explode into polarizing debate? How do you participate without hurting others?—?or yourself? How can you engage in divisive conversations so that you actually learn from them, and maybe even change your views?

[….] This post is your survival guide to those days or weeks when social media feels too hot to handle. It offers some practical advice about how to turn down the temperature or insulate yourself.

But the most powerful tool, and the most fundamental protection, is simply to recognize what’s going on when we explode online. We explode because we come to each of these debates with different ideas about the social media spaces in which our conversations unfold, with different ideas about who is in our online community, and with different levels of investment in the issues at hand.

—”How to survive an online sex scandal” by Alexandra Samuel

Yes, I’m obviously biased. But I think this post by Alex is one of the smartest things she (or anyone I’ve read) has written about online conversation, how it can go off the rails, and how you can keep it on track.

Photo by flickr.com/tambako used under a Creative Commons license.

How to survive an online sex scandal

Subscribe to SpeechList

Insight, advice and ideas for speechwriting, speaking and leadership communications — from my inbox to yours.

Thanks for signing up! Now just one more step: check your email inbox for a confirmation link, and you're all set!