The social media phenomenon has been around for quite a while now, and it continues to divide people up into at least two categories: fans and detractors. Whether we acknowledge it or not, social media has affected all of us, and we are all subject to it to some extent. Gospel Coalition members Collin Hansen, Justin Taylor, and I talked about some aspects of social media in this video.

But this does not settle the deeper personal question:  Are we good at using social media? Or are we distrustful of it? In short, are we a guru or a Luddite? Because I’m sure many folks are confused—and distressed about this confusion—it might help to work carefully through a quiz about social media to help you determine your stance. This is in the light and airy tradition of New Yorker quizzes and others, and, hey, it’s all in good fun.

So here goes. Self-discovery, thy name is quiz.

Section One:
Yes/No (1 point for yes; -1 for no)

  1. Do you have a Facebook profile?
  2. Do you have a Twitter profile?
  3. Do you have a personal blog?
  4. Have you ever notified your social network about a meal you ate?
  5. Do you want to notify your social network about a meal you ate? (Answer why in the essay portion below.)
  6. Have you recently set up a meeting/lunch on someone’s public Facebook “wall” instead of sending a “message” (or, perish the thought, an “email”)?
  7. Do you talk bad about blogs and bloggers—and then skim several blogs to see what’s happening online? (if yes, -5)
  8. Do you regularly shun person-to-person contact to update your profile photo and interests?
  9. Do you think that “virtual” contact is the same thing as in-person contact?
  10. Have you declaimed about how social media distracts you—and then turned on either a football game, political talk show, or “reality TV” show? (if yes, -5)
  11. Have you ever heard of EyestoSeeHim on Twitter?
  12. Do you doubt whether EyestoSeeHim is helpful merely because it is a social media platform? (if no, -5)
  13. Can you read professor/pastor Mark Coppenger’s Twitter feed and not laugh? (if no, -10)
  14. How many times have you referenced your own writing/speaking on your social media platforms? (-5 if you have never done so; for every 10,000x you have done so, add 1 point)
  15. Do you spend more time strategizing for growth on FarmVille than you do in everyday life?
  16. Have you expressed excitement over the fact that “it’s Friday”?
  17. Have you flirted publicly with your spouse or significant other through social media? (If yes, answer why in the essay section below.)
  18. Is it a regular habit of yours to leave long and exclamation-point-filled messages on the social media platforms of “Christian celebrities”?
  19. Do you stalk Christian “celebrities” online? If so, how many? (Add +10 for every 50.)
  20. Do you neglect your studies and work, only to spend hours crafting intricate “comments” on blogs? (Add +40 for every comment written in the last year totaling 200 words or more.)
  21. Do you decry social media, only to hope against hope that its proponents will pick up your works?

Section Two: Short Essay

In a thoughtful essay, assess the strengths and weaknesses of social media as a mode of 1) gospel advancement, 2) self-promotion, 3) community, and 4) fun.
As if in a courtroom, present evidence to back up your position on the following statement: “Social media presents strengths/challenges to deep thinking on big things.”

Section Three: Bonus Points

  • Leave a comment on this blog.
  • “Recommend” this item on Facebook.
  • “Tweet” about this item.
  • “Talk” in-person to someone about this piece (Note: this refers to face-to-face conversation, known in previous centuries as “talking.”).

Section Four: Assessment

  • 1 to 10: Guru-in-Training
  • 10 to 50: Guru
  • 50+: You have serious PR “kung fu.”
  • -1 to -10: Luddite-in-Training
  • -10 to -50: Luddite
  • -50+: Do you have electricity?

Owen Strachan teaches theology and church history at Boyce College in Louisville, Kentucky. Strachan writes for the online biblical learning platform, Bible Mesh. He is also the co-author of the The Essential Edwards Collection. Strachan is an erstwhile blogger and a contributor to the Gospel Coalition blog.

424624: The Essential Edwards Collection, 5 Volumes The Essential Edwards Collection, 5 Volumes

About The Author

Daniel Threlfall has been writing church ministry articles for more than 10 years. With his background and training (M.A., M.Div.), Daniel is passionate about inspiring pastors and volunteers in their service to the King. Daniel is devoted to his family, nerdy about SEO, and drinks coffee with no cream or sugar. Learn more about Daniel at his blog and twitter.

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