Monday, October 31, 2011

Enlighten, Don't Frighten

Have you ever received one of those fear-based alarmist emails that periodically circulate? IMPACT Chicago recommends you delete it or before you forward it:

1. Check it out on
Snopes keeps track of myths about violence and other things. If they have found it to be false, just delete.

2. Even if it appears that the message is accurate, ask yourself if the message is based on fear and terror or on power, strength, nurturing, and support.

Fear and terror-based communications generate helplessness and powerlessness--at odds with the IMPACT Chicago mission. So even if you decide the alert has value don't just forward, but instead translate it into a message that encourages people's power and efficacy or frame it in a way that educates and enlightens rather than frightens.

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