There is a lot of agreement in the Preparedness Community that facing a SHTF event in a community of like-minded people is better than going it alone. On a community level, people can work within their “Circle of Influence” to increase the odds of surviving and even thrive. A group can control inputs and outputs a lot better than an individual. Simply, there is strength and wisdom in numbers. This is true on your local level, but is it true on social media?
There is no doubt that there is strength and wisdom in numbers in the prepper online/social media community. You only have to visit some popular Facebook pages, Google Communities or #preppertalk on Twitter to witness this. Sometimes, these social media outlets are more popular than preparedness websites. But what happens when the ability to move freely within your “Circle of Influence” suddenly becomes operating within your “Circle of Concern?”
What am I talking about?
Let’s use Facebook for an example. There are many preparedness related pages on Facebook. Some have a few hundred “fans” while others have over 100,000 “fans.” All of these Facebook pages put out awesome content. The admins find interesting articles and post them for their Facebook page “fans” to gain more preparedness related info. Sometimes, these posts are followed by good discussion or advice that helps to enhance the information first posted.
But recently, Facebook went “public” with their stock and now, they are a little bit more concerned with revenue and returns than just providing a platform for others to connect and share information. As a result, they changed the way posts are seen on “fan” pages. Now, they want to force owners of pages to pay so that their posts reach more people. There is even more to it, but basically, the way that these owners communicated with their followers changed. You can’t really blame Facebook for wanting to make a buck, they are a business. But many that have ONLY developed their Facebook community are having issues “reaching” their followers.
The main issue that I want to point out is that, just like in our preparedness, we
can’t shouldn’t be dependent on others. We can’t shouldn’t be dependent on social media to help us create a platform for community…because they can change the rules at any time! We need to make sure that we are a part of communities where we control the platform.
Now, even our own preparedness platforms can go. A website or forum owner can just decide to stop for whatever reason. But that is less likely when there is a vibrant, active community involved.
So what can the online prepper do to make sure they stay “connected” with their fellow techno-preppers?
1. Find Online Preparedness Communities with some staying power. For instance, Prepper Website isn’t going anywhere. I’m in it for the long haul. But, there are many other sites that have been around for a long time and have very active communities as well. Another option is to get involved in forums. This is another great way to get involved in an online community. To find some great preparedness related websites and forums, you can visit Prepper Website. Just scroll down below the latest articles to find a ton that are well worth your time. You can also visit Top Prepper Websites to find some lesser known websites. The great thing about those on TPW, is that they are all active in providing content.
2. Redundancy, redundancy, redundancy. You know, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. You want to be a part of a few online preparedness communities. If one goes down, for WHATEVER reason, you can still stay plugged in. One of the things that I have done with Prepper Website is to focus and invest in building the newsletter mailing list. This list sends out an email every morning with direct links to the articles that were posted on Prepper Website the night before. But because it is run completely separate from the website itself, it allows me to communicate with those on the list if something happens, like the website is taken down or hacked or there is a big announcement/event that can’t wait. To sign-up, click here. Rest assured that I will never sell your information!!!
3. Create your Survival/Preparedness binders! Are you too dependent on your favorite sites providing your preparedness info.? If they go down, for WHATEVER reason, will you have access to what you need? You should create and start your own preparedness binder. Having a lot of great info. in printed form might be very helpful one day! This is one reason I started The Preparedness Review. TPR is free and is packed with great articles for your preparedness. The most recent edition – TPR3 – even has a template to help you get your Survival/Preparedness binder organized!
4. Don’t give up on Social Media just yet! Social media isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. By following the recent advice of Jane, Mom With a Prep, you can continue to see the posts from your favorite Preparedness Facebook page! But Facebook isn’t the only social media option out there. That is one reason why I’m posting to the big social media sites on a daily basis. If you like, you can follow Prepper Website on other social media outlets like: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Youtube and LinkedIn.
5. Get Involved on Your Favorite Site. Prepper Website doesn’t really lend itself to posting comments, but many do. Sites like SHTFplan, Backdoor Survial and The Survivalist Blog allow readers to comment and interact. Many times the comments are just as informative and “entertaining” as the articles that are posted.
In closing, I know that some of you who read this feel that social media is not acceptable for preppers. Some of you are concerned that there is too much personal information divulged on social media, it damages OPSEC. I totally respect that. But the action plan above still applies, even if you are visiting websites. The truth is, in our current climate, many of us can foresee a time when the information super highway won’t be as free as it always has been. When that happens, for WHATEVER reason, hopefully you are prepared with your preparedness info. and your own local community of like-minded people. Until then, prep well!
This article first appeared on Ed That Matters.
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IMHO, “Social Networking” sites are a HUGE OPSEC problem. Not only by giving away your preps, but the chance of having your passwords stolen or worse. I think it’s just nutz to post ANYTHING on FB.
I understand your point. However, with the current info. that has come out, I don’t believe anything online is truly safe. Every website you visit, etc… there is a record of it. Even if you are trying to use something like TOR, information has come out that that isn’t even safe. The only true way to be safe online is to not be online.