Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Social Media Transparency

Social Media is something that gets a lot of debate but it comes with it's issues far beyond safety.   Do you create the appearance of a perfect life?  If not, are you putting too much realness out there and where is the balance?  I have been involved with Social Media since roughly 2005...the olden days.  I have seen it change and morph as new forms of Social Media have taken their place among what feels like an overwhelming number of outlets today.  I have taken criticism for my involvement with Social Media...both when I made it look "too perfect" and when I made it "too real."  With Social Media you have to use that TV Channel practice...if you don't like it just move along to the next thing.

I used to have a great following on Southern Somedays but when my life was in such a painful place during and after my divorce I lost the desire to write.  I wish I had continued, as I am sure I lost a great deal of important words, but there for a while the muse was silent.  Now, though...the words are back.  They are probably back more honest and raw than they have been in a long time.  I can't explain why.

One thing that has changed in the last few weeks is that I have made all my Social Media accounts fully public.  I have one public Facebook page for work (required!) and then I had my personal page and it was locked down completely so no one, other than friends could see anything.  I had my Instagram and Twitter private as well.  Why the change?  Well, I was listening a speaker that was discussing the multiple Social Media accounts we often have to juggle in the business world today plus any personal ones we may have.  This savvy lady hit me right in the eyes when she said you should be the same person EVERY WHERE so she saw no need for a Professional and a Private page.  Wow...I had to take some time to digest that one.  Ultimately, though, I saw that is what I wanted... transparency.  I am not perfect by any means, but now, anyone  can see if I am posting Bible quotes right below a dirty joke or inappropriate commentary. 

Anyone can pop over to my Twitter account and see if I am being as snarky as possible in 140 characters or less (which I did under the "safety" of anonymousness last year when I had an Anonymous Twitter account.)  After realizing what I was doing to my testimony, I left Social Media for a long while.  I pulled down all my accounts and took a much needed break to refocus.  I have worked hard to make myself a better person and I hope it shows through all my Social Media accounts.  I only want them to put positive (although sometimes painful shows up, or irritated, or silly and shallow) in this world.  So, I guess in a way Social Media is helping to keep me accountable and transparent because I do want to be 1 person...not 1 perfect person...but a person that is the same throughout my life.  I have changed a lot over the years and I continually strive for the better.  I no longer think it is ok to use an anonymous Twitter account to skewer others, regardless of what they may have done.  There is just too much negative in the world I don't' want to add to it!  I want to be real, which isn't always pretty or what you may want to read but I do want to be what real life is on my tiny spot on this planet.  So here's to less than perfect homes, DIY projects, marriages, children, meals, gardens, children, pets, wardrobes and even the ever important shoes!  Be real, honest and use the greatest integrity. It might not gain you followers as fast but I would must rather grow slowly and steadily than fast and furious because I decided to spew some hate out there....no, you can leave me out of that game.



2 comments:

  1. I found your blog post very interesting. For me, social media is just, I don't know, me being me. Even way back in my blogging days (which I can't seem to revive) it was just me being me. One of the things that has bothered me over the years were the blogs, and now FB/Insta where everything is perfect. Perfect kids, home, marriage, spouse, food, faith, creativity....gawd, please stop braggin'! I think thats why I read only a very few blogs now. I only care about the ones that real. I still have discomfort with twitter and friend/follower requests from people I don't know. And, hackers....and weirdos. I try to keep my SM accounts as private as possible, I guess for that very reason. I've really appreciated your transparency, Michelle, and how you have, ummm, changed in your blogging style. It's refreshing... I hope you will continue to blog and write. When it's real, it really means something to others, and you never know the connection and encouragement someone else might take from it.

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  2. I appreciate everything you've said here. My social media choices have taken a different path. After being the victim of a cyber attacked, aimed at destroying my advocacy group, I shut my personal page down to anyone I don't personally know. The attacker went to my page, took screen shots, and manipulated them to make my words appear to be something they were not. I just recently put a photo of me and my husband as my profile pic on FB (which anyone can see) but generally no longer put photos of family members as my profile or banner pics. I keep everything on my page set to "friends only." And I keep paring down my friends' list. I constantly get friend requests from strangers because of my advocacy work and used to accept them. The attack was very hurtful and changed my life.

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