Social media has become just another everyday thing over the last couple of years. Grandparents in their 70’s down to kids as young as 5 and 6 yrs old are partaking in this popular activity. Updating our social media profiles has become just another thing to do whether we want to share images of our weekend, or we’re passing time at work, we just can’t help it.
The problem with this is that many times people can get too caught up with the social networking experience and tend to over-share photos and information about themselves. A lot of times, what is posted on social media can actually be pretty funny and engaging. On the other hand, at times, what is shared can be flat out annoying and/or inappropriate.
Quite often, people are posting on their wall and tweeting private or trivial information that the world just doesn’t need or even want to know. Does everyone really need to know every thought that has popped into your head today? Do we really need a photo timeline of everything you’ve seen today?
Part of the problem is the convenience and immediate approval that sometimes comes with social media. A photo can be taken and posted to a profile using a smartphone, tablet, or other mobile device within seconds. Anyone can take a picture of anything/anywhere or talk about anything when they post to their social profile. Immediately after, people start to “like” their post giving them an immediate sense of approval they were looking for.
Everyone should follow some sort of etiquette before sharing photos and thoughts online. One of the most important tips for anyone posting on their social media profile is to think before you post. While this may seem like common sense, this is not always followed. Before sharing, think about how others are going to receive your post. Is this post inappropriate, is this offensive, am I sharing too much information? These are just a few questions that can be asked before posting on a wall or tweeting.
Another trend that can be potentially dangerous if used incorrectly is geo-tagging. This concept is great in theory by allowing people to ‘check-in’ from various locations, and let others know where they are or have been. This idea in the wrong hands can be devastating, any online predators looking to find out where you like to frequent can easily take advantage of this. Parents especially should warn their young kids and teens about the potential dangers of geo-tagging and other online dangers so they don’t get taken advantage of.
Social media is a great way to communicate that many people are using today. It definitely comes in handy for sharing photos of family and friends, and is a lot easier than years past. However, it is important to remember that many people can see a profile or post, and may find what you have to say offensive or use your post for negative gain. People young and old, especially young, should be aware of what they are sharing, and always think before posting something that can be used against them. It is also important for parents to monitor and track social media usage to make sure things don’t get out of control.