Social media is a unique and powerful tool for communication in this day and age. It connects us to our friends, our family and even people we wouldn’t expect to meet without it. It allows us to keep up with those we love, find news about our country and the world, learn new things and share our lives with others. But is there such a thing as sharing too much on the internet? Definitely.
According to an article in Psychology Today by Dr. Gwendolyn Seidman, we share details about ourselves on the internet because it makes others like us more. “Research on self-disclosure suggests that we like each other more when we share,” Seidman wrote. However, oversharing can have the opposite effect and can be generally seen as socially inappropriate. There is a line to not be crossed when it comes to sharing on social media.
Media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook and several others are great tools for us to inform our friends and family of news, both good and bad. However, sharing every detail of your life on the internet is not healthy and can even cost people their friendships, especially when the details being shared are trivial matters that could be handled elsewhere.
According to Seidman, “In a recent study, Stephen Rains and colleagues examined how superficial self-disclosures affected friendships… their results showed that much of the reason why these superficial disclosures reduced liking was that they created personal costs.”
In the same way, whining on social media all the time is not something people enjoy. Seeing consistent negative vibes on our social media feed ruins the fun of going on social media. Obviously, stating opinions on social media is everyone’s individual choice, but it’s important that it’s done in a positive manner, rather than whiny tweets and complaints.
Studies show that it’s unappreciated when negativity is constant and shared excessively on the internet.
In one study mentioned in Psychology Today, “The 10 most recent Facebook status updates of 177 undergraduate students were collected and coded for the amount of positive and negative emotion expressed. When outside observers, unknown to those students, evaluated the statuses, the more negative and less positive emotions were expressed, the less the students were liked by the observers.” Constant whining on social media can also lead to others to disagree or fight with your opinions, which just makes it worse. Although it’s important to share what’s important to you, excess can do more harm than good.
Social media is a wonderful way to connect with people and learn new things, however, it can be easily abused if it’s users share too much or share in a harmful way. Oversharing on the internet may not seem to be a huge deal, however, perfecting the way we use social media platforms can greatly improve the way we communicate with each other and the way we build relationships with others.
Zoeann Day can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org