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Are We Over Sharing?

Imagine this: You are sitting in a restaurant  and a complete stranger comes up to you says, “Oh I just wanted to wish your two kids (they name them by name) a Happy Birthday last week.  Oh, and since I’m here, how is that new job that you just got hired to?  Did you actually drink that margarita while hiding in the bathroom from your kids?”

Now, what if this stranger tells you that they learned everything from your Twitter and Instagram account?  Everything that they ever needed to know was right there for the picking.

I don’t know about you, but that is a scary situation.

This is something that we have to take seriously and think about before we post that picture or share that tweet.

And believe me, I get it.  We’re bloggers.  We do write about our personal lives to connect with one another.  

We want to appear relatable and personable to our readers out there–to other bloggers out there.  We want others to see that they are not alone in their journey of life, no matter where they are.  

But there is a line that we have to try not to cross.  

We’ve all done it, but knowing what we know these days about technology we need to ask ourselves:

 

  over-Sharing

Deep down, we’re concerned about the privacy of our children, or what we write about our significant other.  After all, anything and everything we do is traceable back to our real lives off the internet.  

If this is what you could be worried about how about trying the following:

1.  Not sharing your family’s real names.  

 

Those of us who respect this decision will not post their real name online either.  Instead use a nickname, or better yet, an online name that you know your kids would never respond to.  Of course let’s keep it pleasant πŸ™‚  We don’t want a funny nickname to haunt this child when [or if] they ever come into social media.

2.  We can filter our images with Instagram, we should filter what we say about our spouses. 

 

Remember that advice we received when we were newlyweds: keep disputes to yourself and not share it with your family.   When the argument is over, you forget about the problem but our families will still think about–sometimes unable to let it go.   Now let’s take this one step further.  

      • What if it was a poor decision your spouse (or you) made that had a bad result, and you shared it.  How does that show their judgment (or yours)?  Extreme yes, but we don’t know who is really reading our blog or really following us on social media.  One incident  should not decide if that person is  good decision maker, but what if your boss, or your spouse’s boss followed you (because, they heard you had a blog), and read that?  Do you think that will affect your spouse’s chance at promotion?  What about your chances?
3.  Being careful about posting vacations or when you’re out-of-town.  

 

If you are going on vacation and you want to share about your trip with others, that’s awesome.  But try not to share when you’re going out-of-town. Don’t let everyone know that you’ll be out of your home for two weeks traveling X road, and staying at XYZ Inn.  If anything, share your trip with us when you come back.  

4. Turn off tracking.  

 

You know how your phone wants to keep track of your location for everything that you do, umm…yeah…:turn it off. You would be surprised how much data is stored in a picture. Especially a picture that is taken with an app that has tracking enabled.   That means if all your business is conducted within a 5 mile radius of your house (or mainly from your home) then it can and will be found out.   You can still share your pictures, but do it wisely.

5.  Stop before we post-what could sound cute now, could look real bad later.  

 

Pressing send is sometimes a spontaneous action. We are either heated about something, or excited and we want to share that experience immediately.  But we should stop and think about what we’re posting before we do.  Will that comment come back and haunt us down the line?

These days, we sometimes feel like everyone is doing it, so it’s okay.  To not do it seems  not personable–that’s the last thing anyone wants to be.  But we cannot let the trend of over sharing define how we protect our privacy.

How-we-share-matters

In our person-to-person interactions, we know when we crossed that imaginary line; we can see it through raised eyebrows or a look of shock on the other person’s face.  

In social media, we don’t have those clues.  

Since we’re operating without clues, we get the impression that it’s okay to let it all hang out.  Nothing is try stopping us. 

Our privacy really matters, even more so now in a world that is connected online.

Still not sure, how about this experiment?

What are other ways you can think of to protect your privacy in an over sharing society?  Do you think that privacy is over rated?

 

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JustBrenLee
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Are We Over Sharing? – http://t.co/3sdZTgvNLs via @kalleyC

Bren
Guest

Fabulous tips Kalley! I share a bit too much on my blog, however, I don’t use real names nor announce when I’m out of town. I do the same on any public site as well. Just too scary, right? Great post and will be passing it along!

Christleddiva
Guest

RT @KalleyC: There is a thin line between being friendly, and over sharing our personal lives. http://t.co/YV10MEQCG1

KalleyC
Guest

Everything that we say online is public, and it’s written in ink. http://t.co/DrRKJCylV5

KalleyC
Guest

So, how would you feel if a compete stranger knows all about your business, and tells you about it? http://t.co/I9t58WXYb4

Kita
Guest

Love this. I do not use my kids real names and if someone does I erase the post immediately. I also hate that foursquare app I know you want to get extra stuff but people now know where you are I think that is one app that is a no no. I am very careful what I show online because people will come up to you based on a pic or a post.

LaShawn
Guest

I’ve had that experience. I’ve had people come up to Pookah and be like: I know that kid! That’s Pookah! ( I did get a discount at stride rite one time because the salesperson was in love with Pookah). i am so careful about what I post on line now. I wasn’t always that way. I used to post a LOT about my marriage for instance, but I stopped because frankly, I needed to be talking to him instead of buddies on line. Now, I am more general and only post about him rarely. As for photos, I make sure… Read more »

Cassandre
Guest

this post is so near and dear to my heart. I am a huge proponent of not over sharing.. i will never post about my husband or share much about my daughter or any members of my family. i’ll post cute pics here and there of my daughter but very few. I sometimes think that my level of success as a blogger will only reach a certain point because my privacy is way to important to me. i have seen people post important documents and i’m like seriously?? like a license or something, that should never happen. we all have… Read more »

KalleyC
Guest

RT @yvonne1wilson: Are We Over Sharing? – http://t.co/fLLBq0PUVI via @kalleyC

PJ
Guest

Enjoyed the post, and well said. I do believe we tend to share to much information. I know I never share my real name nowhere when I do email accounts, as well as my fb and twitter account. I know I share my story through my poetry and my journey. We do have to be careful cause some are out there that may try to destroy what we have. Post came at the right time KalleyC, tried to comment lastnight and couldn’t from phone. you made some good points as well btw. I always turn off my location. Hope all… Read more »

Jessica
Guest

The unfortunate thing about oversharing is that when you’re online so often, it, or oversharing, seems normal. You have a following and you think you know everyone in that following, so sharing online feels a lot like it does when you’re offline. But it’s not the same. I’ve learned that. I have learned to maintain a distance between who I am in real life and what I say about who I am online. I do share some things. Though, I don’t share everything. I keep names private and don’t include minute details of my family life, even if I really,… Read more »

Brittnei
Guest

I totally think you nailed this one girl. I’ve actually seen another post that was so great to point about the location feature on the different sites and how you should turn that off! I was happy to know mine was off already. Me and my husband are actually pretty private. I do use his real name and mine, but the nickname of our son. I think thus far I have been ok as far as your points are concerned. But that is how I am in real life too. I don’t share all of this stuff that I see… Read more »

Teems
Guest

What a timely post. This is the main reason why I quit. I shared enough. Everyone knows my child’s name but they don’t know my husbands, what he does or what town we live and stuff. It’s hard to suddenly become private when you are known for being open. I never expected the blog to become popular, but it did and I learned my lesson.

Rachel G
Guest

I do use my own and my husband’s real name and first initial of our last names when I write, but I work pretty hard to keep our middle and last names off of the web so that we’re not too easily searchable. (And that strategy, plus the fact that my first name/last name combo is very common, has worked! I periodically search my own name on Google and so far, none of the images that come up or articles that come up are about me) I am very strict about not posting any plans ahead of time, of when… Read more »

Kim
Guest

I’ve been on the fence about this issue.

On one hand, yes, I do think we need to be careful and make smart decisions about what we choose to share on social media. On the other, I worry we’ve become too paranoid for our own good. Information is going to get out there one way or another despite our best efforts to keep it to ourselves. Obviously not everything or every personal detail in our lives, but enough that people can get a general idea of who we are and where we live. Tricky issue but one definitely worth discussing.

Emily (CityBaby Living)
Guest

I really struggle with this topic b/c my blog didn’t/doesn’t have much to do with my daily life, but I found people responded much better when it was personal in some way. And, my blog’s instagram feed has morphed into much more of my personal feed. I finally just made it private because I wanted to have control over who saw my kids. Thanks for writing about this as we all need to find the balance and right way for ourselves.

Vernon
Guest

This is something I must take a real hard look at Kalley. Just today I told my wife Im about to step my game up on the blogging by getting more personal. Then I gave her an example of what I wanted to write about but she vetoed it. I’m going to have to be more creative in my writing because I want my readers to be able to relate. Thanks!

Wanda
Guest

Kalley, finding the balance between relatable and too personal can be a fine line in this online world. Yet it something all of us should be taking more and more seriously. You provided such great practical tips.

Britton
Guest

It’s funny (or maybe not) that I read this post a few days ago (I’ve been meaning to get back here and comment since then) w I had JUST posted about our upcoming Disney trip and basically violated almost all of these tips you suggested! I can say that I am sometimes VERY guilty of over sharing on social media and my blog. I try to not give too much information in one specific post, but I can see how people can easily gather everything they want to know about me if they piece together bits and pieces of different… Read more »

Brandi
Guest

This is such a great topic, Kalley! I will definitely be more cautious of the things I share online after reading your post.

MrsTDJ
Guest

Great post and discussions in the comments. I used to be much more censored in the way I posted, but then I changed a bit. I went ahead and embraced my name online, I’m ok with the recognition. So far, no one has crossed any lines. I’m pretty open about many things on my blog and in my social media accounts, but I make sure that my son isn’t vulnerable. I don’t intimate details, locations or live tweet, etc. However, I hate to break the news to the people who believe they are being super secret and protective – with… Read more »

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[…] than what it sounds.     Confidence is Going Against The Grain.   Last week, I asked if we were sharing too much.  I asked this question out loud because this was a question that I had asked myself.  I […]

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