Holy Twitter! Religious tweets, a #Sharknado attack & post-Zimmerman fallout in the digital week

CINCINNATI - You never know what will spark a viral frenzy or get people riled up in the digital world. This week brought together topics and issues that no one could have predicted. 

#Omnomnom - “Sharknado” scores a sequel. Let me start by saying that I did not watch the premiere of SyFy’s campy disaster flick, “Sharknado.” I did not watch it because a) I only have basic TV channels and b) sharks and birds are two of the four things I’m most afraid of in this world. A movie about flying sharks who attack people? Pass. However, I was highly amused with how quickly this flick devoured social media.

Despite being a ratings nightmare, “Sharknado” generated almost 5,000 Tweets per minute and was trending with the hashtag #Sharknado.

It was like a Jaws-style feeding frenzy on social media! The network announced a sequel, due in 2014–and here’s the cool part: SyFy is giving social media fans the chance to add a creative subtitle to the new flick. You  can Tweet your ideas to @SyfyMovies with the hashtag #Sharknado for a shot at (semi) fame.

What would you call a #Sharknado sequel?

A social dilemma: The Zimmerman trial and the social mediaverse. In the wake of the July 13 verdict in the George Zimmerman trial, you probably noticed your social media feeds and pages blowing up with new “experts” in the field of criminology, sociology, race relations, the U.S. Constitution, law and the justice system.

Like many, you may have been annoyed that your friends and family, yet again, took to social media to voice their opinions on an issue that remains highly controversial and extremely sensitive. So, when is enough just enough? When do you hit that “post” button, and when do you count to ten (and decide not to post)?

WCPO Digital community manager Libby Cunningham spoke with Scooter Media founder Shannan Boyer to get a few tips on what should stay and what should go on your platforms if you want to keep it  clean, professional and free of angry rants between friends.

Saying goodbye to a sensation and inspiration. The world got the sad news on July 16: 13-year-old Talia Castellano, YouTube makeup artist, CoverGirl and “Ellen” guest, lost her six-year battle with cancer. The young girl wowed the Web with her stunning online makeup tutorials and captured the hearts of the nation when she appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres” show, armed with a bubbly personality and positive outlook.

An outpouring of support from friends, fans, CoverGirl and DeGeneres flooded social media that day, and Talia’s mantra of “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming” (from the Pixar flick, “Finding Nemo”) resounded with millions who were moved by her inspirational story.

Tweeting your way into heaven. So if you believe in life after death, you probably did a double take at this one. Tweeting your way into eternal life? Sounds too good to be true, and--rest assured--it is. But, Pope Francis is giving Catholics the option to follow and support World Youth Day. For those who can’t be in Brazil for the event, social media can take you there.

The catch? Tweeting with the hashtag #WYD won’t exactly absolve Catholics of their sins. It will however, help them secure an Indulgence (something that buys Catholics less time in Purgatory). In addition to prayer, penance and celebrating the sacrament of Confession, Catholics can show their support for young people celebrating World Youth Day via this new form of communication and shave a little time off their stay in Purgatory.

Catholic friends, what do you think about the new Twitter-based Indulgences? Or, do you want to chat about social etiquette when it comes to posting controversial topics? Let’s talk! Connect with me on Twitter @jennyfromthebak

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