These days, everyone seems to put everything online: engagements, vacation pictures, pregnancy announcements, emotional state of mind, health conditions– you name it, and someone has posted it on Facebook.
Oversharing is hard to define. One person’s TMI is another person sharing news with their close family and friends. But there are some topics that definitely cross the line. Social media posts about these three topics have real-life consequences. So please, think before you post.
1) Legal battles
This article (click here to read it) discusses multiple instances of individuals being penalized in court for sharing confidential details of their legal cases on social media. If you are involved in a legal dispute, your lawyer will give you advice about what to keep quiet and what is okay to share.
Legal implications aside, many legal battles involve confidential information about others, including teenagers and children. It’s just not fair to the people involved in your case to have their secrets and dirty laundry aired on Facebook, and it won’t sway the judge in your favorite. If you are not sure whether to post something online, keep it to yourself. You won’t regret it.
2) Hard times at work
When Facebook constantly asks you what’s on your mind, it is hard not to vent about a hard day at work. If you value your professional reputation though, refrain from posting about that nasty customer or the altercation with your boss. It is easy to forget who follows your social media feeds (like that boss you publicly insulted), and even if your online circle is safe, social media posts have a way of getting around. Companies don’t like to be known for unhappy employees, and bosses prefer to hire people who appreciate their jobs. If you publicly complain, you just might find yourself out of work. Skeptical? Check out this CNN article about 10 people who got fired because of social media activity.
Depending on your age, too much “fun” can be evidence that you broke the law. Even if you are legal, though, partying pictures are a red flag to others that you just don’t know how to present a professional image. Admission comittees, prospective employers, and current bosses are all likely to replace an individual whose social media profile is lacking in class with someone less controversial.
There are many, many social media moves that annoy some and engage others. But over sharing IS real, and it can have serious consequences. Be wise, be cautious, and don’t forget that social media is not just your window to the outside world. It is also the world’s window to your life too.