Thursday, August 11, 2011

You Are What You Tweet

After Tuesday's cautionary tale, Miss X and I were discussing (Yes, she still talks to me after that experience) and she raised an interesting point. Not only did the warning I mentioned about giving out too much personal information in the social media blizzard apply to the sender, but it also applied to how one replied to others.

How you respond can tell as much about you as tweeting personal information can. If you're constantly rude and biting in your tweets, you probably are as well in your real life. That broadcasts clearly. However, humor is a funny thing- funny-odd, not funny-haha. Even when you use 'LOL' or ':D' in a tweet, the reply you intended as funny and humorous doesn't always get interpreted that way by the reader on the other side of the tweet. You can *emphasize* a word for effect, but that doesn't always translate well either. A reader will process your tweet through their own set of filters of funny or appropriate. Not every uses the same set of parameters.

Throw in cultural differences, societal movements, personal beliefs and you've got a recipe for potential disaster. How can you avoid insensitive replies? It's really, really *REALLY* simple.

Think before you type.

In this go-go-gimmie-gimmie-now-now social media age, communication is almost instant and permanent. Insert cliche about one chance at first impressions here. How you present yourself is generally how you will be perceived. Once you hit send, it's out there for everyone to see. Think about that the next time you're sitting in front of Twitter, Facebook or Google+.

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