Is Honesty Always the Best Policy?

23 Feb

We all know that person who uploads a new picture of himself or herself to Facebook every ten minutes.  Or, our best friend’s mom who posts a status update about every possible accomplishment her children make.  Or, a vocal advocate who shares his or her political views on Twitter for the world to see.  People seem to always be less inhibited, and more honest when posting on the Internet than in person.  But why is this the case?

The tendency to be more honest on the Internet is a phenomenon known as “the online disinhibition effect.” The feelings of authority or dominance that are inevitable in face-to-face confrontation do not exist on the Internet, enabling social media users with the freedom to post as they please.

We are always told to be honest when dealing with people.  However, in a world where connecting on social media is as prevalent as connecting in real life, divulging personal emotions on the Internet can have consequences.  How honest is too honest when dealing with the world wide web of social media?

Here are some questions to ask yourself when determining if an Internet post is appropriate:

Can it impact any of my relationships positively?  Negatively?

Is the Internet a suitable forum?

Would I be comfortable having my grandma read this? How about my boss?

As social media continues to become a more integral part of business communication, posting appropriately on the Internet concerns all considering a profession in business.  Therefore, it is imperative to learn the proper social media etiquette.

In the end it all comes down to one thing: think before you post! Sharing ideas on the Internet can have many benefits, and you can learn a lot.  Just take a moment to reflect on your post, and you should be fine.  Post away!

by Jonathan Darnell 

Sources:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204795304577221164189123608.html

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