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Think About It

4 years ago by

Think About It

Before you post something online, how clearly do you think it through?
I take a photo I like, and I throw it onto Instagram like it’s nobody’s business. But it is, and that’s what’s kind of scary.

Recently I came across a random comment I left impulsively in a group online discussion about seven years ago (yeah, remember when forums were cool?!)(me neither haha). So I decided to do some self-indulgent Googling (yeah yeah, we’ve all done it), and it was strange to see how the wild wild web had pieced together this picture of me — and to think about how this would mean the world might perceive me. Long-forgotten images of bad haircuts, college exam results, a Google+ profile I used for about two days…

It disoriented me, and made me really think: who am I? But most of it was the person I was for an impulsive minute years ago (aka the day I decided to get bangs).

I know the younger gens have lessons in school when they’re taught the dangers of posting something online — those images, those comments, that idea of you is now owned by [insert tech company name here]. That image of you that your mom took and you uploaded to Facebook isn’t just yours, it’s Facebook’s. But how about us, who had to rope learn as all of this new social media came into being. Us guinea pigs who might deserve a carte blanche.

What Karlie said about controlling her image via social media really resonated with me. I love that she uses it to her advantage, that she’s considerate about what she feeds to the world online.

And so maybe should we all, right? (Supermodel or not.)

10 comments

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  • Rebecca July, 21 2015, 2:49 / Reply

    I highly recommend everyone to read the book Net Smart: How to Thrive Online by Howard Rheingold. He elaborates on 5 aspects of the internet which I find that we need to incorporate in our everyday interactions with the internet and all that comes with it: attention, crap detection, participation, collaboration and network smarts.

    It’s a bit dry, but very practical tips!

  • Unfortunately, we live in a world where image and perception are everything. Therefore, we aren’t truly judged for who we are but who people think we are. It is unfair for your character to be encapsulated in one moment, photo or comment but that is the reality. Hence, the reason it is imperative for everyone to guard their online reputations with their lives, being mindful of what we post, our responses and what we support. It is far too easy for an innocent post become misconstrued and the subject of public backlash!

  • I used to put any picture online and now I definitely think about it more and am pretty selective

    http://hashtagliz.com

  • I was active on Forums in middle/high school and now can’t even remember my logins to delete or change things. Same with live journals and xangas. It’s so sad that there are things out there that now are so cringeworthy! But now I think and rethink everything I post and how it will relate back to me in years to come!

    – Kaitlyn | http://www.TheCrownFox.com

  • mais oui bien sur. Je ne poste jamais de photo de mon visage pour ne pas être reconnue et ne l’ai jamais fait. Je me google-ise régulièrement pour effacer un maximum de trace, j’utilise des pseudos au maximum (donc on ne retrouve pas ma trace sur les vieux forums), etc.
    C’est la notion de privacy qui est en jeu.
    D’ailleurs les forums me manquent. C’était bien plus profond que les sites de photos qui disparaissent dès le lendemain sous la quantité type instagram ou de phrases assassines type twitter. Les réseaux sociaux, ca reste creux pour le moment.

  • C’est vrai que ça peut vite dégénérer c’est pour ça qu’il faut faire gaffe aux photos qu’on poste et aux commentaires qu’on peut écrire…

    Christelle
    http://www.lipleblog.com

  • I’m always super worried about the pictures and information I upload. We are so used to overinformate people nowadays and it’s kind of scary! But I’m also really worried about what others might think of me, so maybe that has to do with the fact that I’m online – shy, when in “real” life I’m really extrovert. I guess I think I can control where I’m going if I see the expression and reaction of the people I’m with. But online you just throw yourself to the universe without having control of the consequences. Scary!
    xx,
    E.
    http://www.theslowpace.com

  • Oh, absolutely agree! I think with so many different types of social media people became too relaxed and almost naive trusting their lives, intimate moments and thoughts with the world. I am not saying that it’s best to avoid everything because it’s actually fun and for me a nice way to return to my “happy places” once in a while, but I also believe that everyone should still pause and tick a few “rules” in their imaginary book before sharing anything – image, words, ideas – online. Remember Julia Roberts saying in “Hotting Hill” (years ago!) that everything and anything published about you will remain out there forever – unfortunately it is still true, if not more true than it was back then… x

  • It’s such a challenge to balance what to share and what not to share, because you have to be so mindful of the impact. We’re so multifaceted…a bit like diamonds….that one comment or pic really doesn’t portray who you really are. But it’s all about taking control of your image which essentially your brand.

  • I’ve come to a place where I don’t dare post anything online anymore. I’m not a blogger, so that helps, but can’t remember the last time I posted something on my facebook page, and I don’t have twitter or instagram. Any other social media channels I have are anonymous.
    Everything you say can be taken out of context, and often doesn’t even have to be – most social media posts are too short to really provide context. No one post can truly represent you, and even a series of posts is more likely to create an untrue image of you – be it more positive of negative and on purpose or accidentally – than it is to show the real you. And I find Facebook as a company to be really creepy – the way they keep tabs on everything you do, and take ownership of it all too.
    I see how posting on social media can help you connect with other people and how you can even use to it to create a postive image for yourself, but the way everything is out there for eternity and for the whole world to see makes me extremely apprehensive of it all.

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