For me, and just maybe for you too, that is the question! One foray into social media and I can’t help thinking that there is an element of “over sharing” going on… For some reason some people feel it is necessary and relevant to share elements of their personal life that you ordinarily may know nothing about unless you chose to.
This kind of sharing can start to feel more and more like a constant chatter of other people’s news and unedited thoughts bursting into the day. That and lots of pushed advertising, invites to take part in personality quizzes and other mindless games…
As Rod Liddle says in his quite provocative book “Selfish Whining Monkeys”, we now believe, as a society, that what anyone has to say on any particular matter is equally valid which of course it isn’t. But there it is each and every day in your newsfeed and mine too: everyone’s opinion on everything. Of course we can choose to have time out from social media and digital detoxes and that is a good thing. But generally sharing is a good thing, is it not?
I think it is and can be. We now have the luxury of having any kind of information, learning and knowledge right there at our fingertips whenever we want it. It is, after all, up to us to control the way we use this media. The main issue I have is that word any as it means that all of this sharing is unfiltered. No matter how much we may try to filter it by being on appropriate Linked In groups or at the end of relevant blog feeds. And if we now want to find something out we’ll google it or let others’ reviews and opinions make our decisions for us.
The average individual consumes 34 gigabytes of content and 100,000 words of information in a single day. When I go onto Twitter part of me can’t help thinking that we are each just promoting ourselves and our own stuff – how much real listening is actually going on? Interaction? I’m genuinely not sure! We need empathy to share on social media, just like we need empathy to communicate and interact face to face.
So as in real life, good use of sharing on social media is still about relationships as well as about our individual ability to control how we use and filter all the information.
How much do you share on social media and why?