Somehow I came across this blog the other day. Don’t waste your time clicking the link, actually: the blogger’s 14 places not to Tweet did not prove as entertaining as I thought it would. This is of no fault to the blogger so much as it is (in the end) just already pretty obvious where you shouldn’t be posting on your Twitter or Facebook (for real, who updates their Twitter during their wedding photos). Although, the area where it is not as clear is in that of what you should not be posting about.
The reason for this is simple: everyone uses Facebook, Twitter, and all of their other social networking sites, for different reasons. Some use it to complain about their lives; others to market themselves for work. Still others are on to keep in contact with friends and family and share information. The possibilities of why people are hooked in to social media are endless; and yet, the thing to remember is that not everyone is on for the same reason as you. As a result, it’s important to follow some simple discretion when it comes to your posts. Your friends/followers/connections/whatever-you-may-call-thems will thank you.
You all remember my blog a few weeks ago about things I would prefer you not post online. While that was an all encompassing list of photos, updates, articles, etc. that seems more for Facebook than anything else, this handy-dandy list pertains specifically to the status-update; or, in Twitter-land, the Tweet.
Things to Forgo Being All A’Twitter About
- Consistent with the main theme of things I would prefer you not post online, let’s kick this list off with anything relative to bowels or personal hygiene. That includes (but is not limited to): showers, baths, shaving your legs, shaving your face, shaving your nether-regions, waxing, and anything having to do with the effects of one too many Triple Steak Burritos at taco bell.
- Posts about how your [fill in the blank] is the best [fill in the blank] ever. Your [fill in the blank] is not the best [fill in the blank] ever because someone else on my page says that their [fill in the blank] is the best [fill in the blank] ever, and quite clearly there can’t be more than one best [fill in the blank] ever, so you must both be wrong.
- Details of your labor and delivery. If you’re like me and you’re in that 20 – 40 age range, every other post on Facebook or Twitter is about pregnancy and childbirth. Share the happy time with everyone, sure; but spare us how many centimeters you’re dilated.
- Sex. Sex. Sex. As in, you having it. The only thing your status updates about sex let us know is where we should make sure to bring a prescription of penicillin along with next time we travel. Please, spare us all.
- The dramatic ups and downs of your relationship. If you are announcing a new boyfriend, or a finale to your traumatic marriage, that’s fine. But every day with the “I’m so alone in this marriage” and the “feeling rejected by my man” gets really old and seems more a cry for attention than anything else.
- And on the note of cries for attention, everyone should just skip past those vague posts that are intended only to get people’s attention. Save us the “well that was just great”s and just say what you mean.
- Excessive quotes. I have been known to post a quote or two about things that are truly entertaining, or more often from a book I’m reading. But people that post quotes ad nauseum, very often with those happy crappy “isn’t life grand” themes just pisses everyone off. Limit your quotes to infrequent; and make sure there’s some meaning behind them. As one blogger puts it: “Quoting the wisdom of someone else does not make you philosophical or smart. It simply makes me dislike you.”
- Have you ever seen one of those annoying status updates that go on and on about sisters, brothers, people with cancer, the military, etc, etc? You know those ones that try and guilt you into reposting them at the end with some jargon like “85% of people won’t repost this, let’s see if you do.” Yeah, those. Friggin’ stop it!
- While we’re on that, the Facebook games. Like the one about posting your shoe size with a frowny face afterwards to try and “trick the guys” into thinking you’re posting about being disappointed about the size of a man’s member; or the one where everyone posted the color of the bra they were wearing to raise breast cancer awareness. I’ve got news for you ladies: you aren’t raising awareness of anything except how much of a ninny you can be.
- Posts about how you are having a nervous breakdown. I’m not talking about the occasional “had a really bad day” or “relieving my stress with a glass of wine” … those are fine. I’m talking about the posts that go on and on, complaining about how you just can’t take it all anymore; and that occur so frequently in the week it’s all anyone expects from you. I get that a lot of you may have very stressful lives, but just remember this: somewhere out there there is someone in a much worse situation than you, and it is very likely they are on your friends/followers list and thinks you’re being nothing but whiny and ungrateful for the things you have. If you have some personal problems, share them with others in private – telephone, email, and in person works much better than a broadcast to the entire Social-Network-a-verse.
- This one isn’t so much a thing you should avoid posting so much as improper ways to post. STOP POSTING IN ALL CAPITAL LETTERS! PLEASE!!! ALL YOU ARE DOING IS YELLING AT ME! AND WHILE WE’RE AT IT, LET’S STOP USING IMPROPER GRAMMAR, SPELLING (WIT U), AND PUNCTUATION. THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO REASON TO PUT A SPACE BETWEEN YOUR EXCLAMATORY SENTENCE AND THE EXCLAMATION POINT ! ! !
- The ever-dramatic, attention-getting posts about how you’re quitting Facebook or Twitter “for good this time.” One person on my friends list on Facebook continually goes back and forth between having her Facebook active and not, and frankly it drives me insane. The last time she was on she posted status after status about how she was deleteing her page again and someone commented “stop crying for attention and either delete your page or delete me from your friends list.” Here! Here!
- Finally, let’s all stop posting that we are on your way somewhere mundane. If you are on your way to a wedding or a cool new place, that’s fine, but spare us the daily update that you’re on your way to work. No one cares.