You are what you tweet

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Social network sites have become a part of everyday society, culture and life now a days. Adverts inevitably end with “follow us on Twitter” or “see more on our Facebook group” and companies are seeing more and more company time being wasted by office workers sat on social networking sites, probably conversing with people in the next booths to them.

Come on, be honest, how many of you have sat constantly refreshing your page, only to keep seeing what Facebook friend number 656 (nobody has that many friends) had for their dinner that day.  Boring. Plus, no one can deny having a good stalk on someone’s profile critiquing their outfit choice like you’re the fashion police and laughing at their bios

We’re all guilty of Facebook and Twitter sins and it’s rare nowadays to find someone not on Facebook or another social networking site of some kind.  A look of unrepressed horror passes on our faces on learning, that no, said individual cannot follow your insightful musings on Twitter because they’re not part of the virtual community.

But as unfortunate celebrities have shown us, tweeting can get you in very hot water.  Ryan Gigg’s tweet scandal will probably haunt him forever, no injunction would have been able to stop the retweeting going on after that story was leaked. Across the pond in America, over the festive weekend, outrage broke out after  Congressman Weiner sent  lewd photos to a female follower via Twitter and more recently and closer to home, MP, Dianne Abbott might have pulled down Labour’s popularity with her controversial tweet in relation to race after the verdict of the Lawrence inquest.

It’s a difficult dilemma that celebrities must find themselves in when it comes to Twitter and Facebook groups.  One the one hand they claim they want privacy, but then bombard devout followers of Celbritism with tweets.  Then there’s the moral dilemma as what can constitute as opinion or advertising or endorsing.  I mean, can Example mentioning Nando’s in a tweet be classed as endorsement? And in concern to Abbotts tweet, is she not entitled to opinion because she is an MP? Or do her tweets need to have that political varnish on them too?

Employers and universities have also said to keep tabs of applicants by checking out their profiles- so maybe it would be a good idea to change your profile picture featuring a very drunk version of you stealing a traffic cone.  Changing your settings to only friends would be a good idea too, as then they wouldn’t be able to see your pictures, but only your general information, which you probably have in on your CV anyway.

More and more people are joining social networking sites nowadays and breaking news really finding us straight away thanks to the fact we are glued to our Twitter accounts.  For the parents of Anuj Bidve however, this wasn’t always a good thing, as they found out about the tragic death of their son via a social networking site and not from the police. Greater Manchester police apologised for this, but is it honestly their fault?

Viral videos and social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook do mean that breaking news really is breaking news.  Within seconds you can know at the touch of a button what is going on at the other side of the world.

So do us a favour, I don’t want to know what you had for your tea really, it just makes me depressed about my microwave meal, or that you can’t find one of your socks.

Just remember, you are what you tweet, so tweet well.

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