I often quietly observe and ponder what and how others post on social media. I also reflect on what I post and share. I often have conversations with others about this. I am sure most people do all of the above as well. We can judge or justify just about anything in regards to sharing on social media it can seem at times.
I have used the expression, “sharing is caring” in the past, but I also think that being careful what you share is also caring. Yet I know that there will be differences in opinion about what “careful sharing” looks like. The conversation often leads to a debate about sharing as a “brand” and what is appropriate for different age groups, especially youth. Andrew Campbell covered that topic well in a recent post. I like to share/post things that I find interesting and inspiring, but I also try to be less quick to share and take that space…
One way I have tried to withhold judgement about what other people post/share is by thinking about how our communities, neighbourhoods, and social opportunities have changed. Our families, friends and acquaintances are not in close proximity as much as in the past. Sharing our lives, experiences, and reactions to news and events in bits and pieces often and over time with close ties may not be possible as it once was. Our social needs remain, but the contexts have changed. Our mobile devices make it so easy to share in the moment what we are excited about. Upsides and downsides, I recognize.
I hope social media hasn’t replaced or reduced in-person interactions, but it has filled a gap. But I often sense that it can get “overboard”. When is sharing really bragging? When is “bragging” really just a need to be validated because more socially acceptable interaction or validation is not there? It is called a “status” update. It’s tricky, I know. There are times when I get bored with social media… reading about social media… but here I am writing about it again… :)
Two articles I found on Twitter recently (shared by @redfearn and @courosa, respectively) that connected and pushed some of my thoughts on this:
Both are thought-provoking about the sharing of experiences on social media and what that could mean — now and in the future.