Let’s be honest here: Who doesn’t love a good social media overshare? Sure, it’s a little uncomfortable to watch a Facebook friend go ape over politics, blather on about the boil they found on their knee or openly trash their boss. But it’s compelling stuff for a minute, anyway. It’s like the loud drunk guy at a party who’s more trashed than everyone else and stops the room’s conversation so he can yell at people he barely knows.
Part of what makes social media oversharing so ridiculous is that everybody knows how tacky it is to give out too much information on Facebook or Twitter. So when someone actually melts down online, you can’t take your eyes off of it. Yet this got us wondering: Maybe we should have a refresher on why oversharing on social media is dangerous for your image, bad for your brand and just plain rude.
The UK Ministry of Defense agrees. Mashable ran a piece earlier this week about how the ministry is cautioning its servicemen and women about the dangers of oversharing on social media. The online PSAs point out that carelessness on social media could actually be extremely dangerous for members of the armed forces. It’s a great campaign — we’ll go a step further. We think oversharing is disastrous for brands and individuals. Images can be made or destroyed overnight; with long-winded or inappropriate social media messages, it can happen a lot faster than that.
Anthony Weiner would surely agree and so would nearly every other pop star or professional athlete. When tweeting or Facebooking for your business, stay away from politics, religion, sex, your company’s inner workings, gossip, race and anything else that followers would find offensive. And while we would like to assume you wouldn’t do such a thing, let us advise you never to send pictures of your junk in tweets or conduct raunchy conversations on Facebook.
Oversharing is not caring… mainly because it’s tacky. Bitching in all caps about your clients or ranting about coworkers just looks horrible. The social media overshare is like farting in an elevator. Just don’t do it.