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二○一九年三月二十三日/三月二十四日                                                                                 Click here for English version

不叫我們遇見試探

陳浩然牧師

3 月 15 日新西蘭基督城發生了一宗震驚世界的槍殺事件。一名槍手在當地兩間清真寺開槍,造成至少 50 人死亡、多人受傷的慘劇。基於事件的本質,宗教仇恨、種族主義、極端政治思想、及槍械管制等議題再次成為社會的討論焦點。然而,事件亦揭示了一個今天網絡世界不能忽視的問題:社交媒體的使用。

今次槍殺事件的策劃者,在事發前利用各種社交平台宣傳他的政治立場,更令人匪夷所思的,是他將槍殺過程在社交平台上直播。這段接近 17 分鐘的行兇過程視訊,顯示槍手是將攝錄機安裝在額頭上,以自己的視線角度進行直播,有關視訊在互聯網上被廣泛分享。鑒於事態嚴重,多個社交平台立刻把視訊刪除。據 Facebook 的報道,他們在案發後 24 小時內,總共刪除了 150 萬條與事件有關的視訊。

槍手肆無忌憚地以「第一身」角度進行直播,目的不只是讓觀看者「知道」他的行為,更要觀看者代入現場,「參與」他的行為!而更令人憤怒的,是一段濫殺無辜的視訊,竟有這麼多人主動「分享」?難道因為當中沒有自己認識的人?150 萬次,絕對不是小數目!我想若不是有關社交平台斷然刪除視訊,今天的分享次數可能已是天文數字了。

今天我們都習慣使用社交媒體,但有沒有想過它如何影響你的思想?我試列出其中兩點:一)社交媒體成為了散播意識形態的工具。上文提到槍手如何利用社交媒體宣揚自己的理念,這種手法其實不算新鮮,今天不少機構組織也會藉社交媒體來宣傳。一些組織更會使用龐大的資源,左右整個媒體生態,讓人接受他們的議程,「參與」他們的行列。二)社交媒體會令人失去良善。社交媒體的功能原是促進溝通,但不少人為了「要顯明自己有理」,就藉此進行人身攻擊,以致網上欺凌事件觸目皆是。也有人為了提高社交平台的點擊率(以獲取金錢回報),就分享譁眾取寵的資訊,那怕是捏造、或使用令人反感的材料。150 萬次的分享,就是一個明顯例子。

社交媒體有其實用價值,禁止使用根本是不切實際。但我們可以這樣禱告:主啊,我使用社交媒體的態度是否過分了?每日毫無目的地尋找意義不大的資訊,我不是應當多讀祢的話語,以致能分辨世界似是而非的主張?我是否以它取代了真正的肢體相交?我不是應當多思考祢的良善,以致能以良善待人?求主憐憫。阿門。






Pastor's Sharing
Lead Us Not into Temptation
Rev Raymond Chan

The world was shocked on March 15 when a gunman opened fire at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, killing at least 50 people and injuring many others. The massacre renewed debate on topics such as racist and religious hate crimes, extreme political ideologies and gun control. Nevertheless, the incident also exposed a question that our Internet world cannot evade today: the use of social media.

Prior to the mass shootings, the perpetrator had publicized his political ideology on a number of social media platforms. Even more horrific was that the process of the killings was broadcast live on the social media. The crime video, lasting almost 17 minutes, revealed that the gunman had a camera mounted on his forehead so the audience saw what he saw. The footage was widely shared. In view of the seriousness of the matter, many social media organizations quickly removed the video from their platforms. Facebook said it removed 1.5 million videos of the attack in the first 24 hours.

The POV video broadcast was not only intended to let people see his action but also to see it firsthand, or "participate" in his action! What is more provoking is that the video about the killing of the innocent was so widely shared. Is it because those in the video were not known by the sharers? 1.5 million is no small number! It must have gone astronomical by now had the service providers not terminated the distribution.

Today, we are accustomed to the social media. But has it ever occurred to you how much it affects the way you think? Two noteworthy points: 1) The social media has become a tool for imparting ideologies. I have mentioned above how the gunman used the social media to convey his claims. It is nothing new. Such a method of promotion is being used by many organizations today. Some organizations even spend huge amounts of money trying to manipulate or steer the media in order to advance their agenda or make people join their ranks. 2) The social media tends to make people lose goodness. The social media is originally intended for communication. Nevertheless, to show that they are in the right, many people have resorted to personal attacks so that bullying online is rampant. Some others, in trying to maximize patronage (for cash returns) of their piece on the social media, will say what the audience wants to hear, enlisting fake or offensive information where necessary. The 1.5 million shared viewings are a clear example.

The social media has practical values and it is impractical for its use to be banned. But we can pray like this: Lord, have I gone overboard in my use of the social media? Am I spending time every day to aimlessly search for information that is hardly meaningful? Should I not be spending more time studying Your Word so I can discern right and wrong in a world of specious assertions? Have I replaced true fellowship with brothers and sisters with the social media? Should I not spend more time contemplating Your goodness so I can treat others with goodness? Lord, have mercy on me. Amen.