Raif Badawi and the Happy Shares on Social Media

Did you ever notice that when you post something on social media that isn’t a holiday picture, a gorgeous sunset, a selfie, your baby or cat, your fitness workout/yoga or you in a cool restaurant/club, your active friends/followers become all of a sudden quiet?

You hardly get any “likes” or comments?

It’s oh so quiet..shh shhh?

Happy stuff

Since I use social media platforms as Facebook and Instagram for several years now this is quite familiar to me.

Yesterday for example I reposted a video about the writer Raif Badawi who’s already 6 years in prison in Saudi Arabia, because he expressed his thoughts about the regime and Islam in Saudi Arabia. It almost cost him his life. Interesting to see that when I post a picture of a beautiful sunny Sunday on Ibiza quite some of my Instagram followers seem to like it whereas the video and words about Raif Badawi hardly has any views. And really this isn’t the first time and I always wonder why.

Do people only want to see happy stuff on social media? Or is it because they don’t know what to do about the injustice, it’s hopeless what they see, and therefore they decide not to pay further attention? Is it because it’s too far from their existence? Or is it because they just don’t care?

I always wonder why. Social media, it’s a fascinating subject. Earlier I wrote a piece about it on this blog. I was fed up with the fakeness on social media. I was disappointed about the way many of us are using social media. The emptiness I saw — and still see. Then quit if you don’t like it, stop whining about it (I hear you)!

Of course, I know I can, but I decided to stay as I — between the hollow words and images — still find inspiration on social media and it can be fun to have some glimpses into the lives of family and friends abroad.

I’m not the type of person who only shares how beautiful Ibiza is or post pictures of places where I’m having my dinner or glass of wine (in my warm home ;). At times I post about issues that are happening in the world and which mean something to me and that isn’t happy stuff: violations of human rights, injustice, people suffering from war, the brutal way animals are treated by humans, the plastic in the oceans. You see, the sad stuff.

Love-hate relationship

I accepted I just have a love-hate relationship with social media and I will stop complaining about it once and for all. Maybe also start accepting the possibility that quite some of us don’t want to see sadness and injustice on their social media pages, or at least don’t feel the need to comment on it, but rather see the sunny side of life in their social news feed.

Everyone should post on social media whatever they find worth sharing. It’s your place so you can do whatever you want. We are still the lucky ones who are free to express ourselves (in whatever way that is).

Raif Badawi wasn’t.


Con Amor,



P.S. Any thoughts? Be welcome to share them with me.



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