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Letter from the Editor

Just so there’s no misunderstanding …

When it comes to social media, it is one aspect of our current technology that I have never used and don’t want to use, since I blame it for many of the ills of society.

It is, in my view, more of an anti-social media because it allows cowardly critics, busybodies and mean, vindictive people of otherwise little significance to attack people’s characters, spread falsehoods and start trouble where none existed.

Unfortunately, these forums invite abuse because questionable contributors of spurious material can add it anonymously and because fact-checking craziness is an impossible job. This is especially so for part-time administrators who have more important work to do.

That said, an incident involving our Bayside Gazette Facebook page this past week is my fault, because, in essence, I don’t care about its existence and therefore did not see to its maintenance.

Numerous people with past ties to this paper retained administrative privileges until earlier this week, and one of them or an associate of one of them using that individual’s credentials, blocked a critic of the Ocean Pines status quo from access to our Facebook page.

To put it bluntly, this could be written off as petty BS, except that it threatens the credibility of the Bayside Gazette, which we have worked hard to develop and maintain. Our job is to report Ocean Pines news, not to be a part of it, and by dragging us unknowingly into this ridiculousness, this individual, either purposely or inadvertently, has attempted to damage our reputation as well.

We don’t take kindly to that. But neither are we going to engage in guessing who’s responsible by listing everyone who remained on the administrator list long after their departures, all because of my own lack of involvement.

I apologize for that, and promise to do better, even though I still contend that social media postings, while adhering to the principle of free speech, frequently fail to acknowledge the equally important principles of responsibility and personal accountability.

Stewart Dobson