In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Do Not Disturb.”
How much do you value your online privacy? How much of yourself are you willing to share with the digital world?
The TMI crew overshare, saturating the internet with pictures of the baby they just had, that they think looks like a cherub but actually looks like an angry sultana.
Or there are cretinous couples who believe we all want to have our social media splattered in their long drawn out, very public arguments.
On the flip side, successful sharers can trigger ‘FMO‘ or ‘fear of missing out’, which describes the feeling of wistfulness inspired by the status updates and the perfectly filtered photos of those who always seem to be having an infinitely better time in various tropical locations – whilst simultaneously just being better all around humans – than we are.
Some of us are happy to share the most intimate and important details of our lives with our friends (and therefore the internet), while some of us try and keep that shit sewn up tighter than.. well, than a tight thing (I tried to think of a simile but they were all rude).
Then there’s the branding – and I don’t mean that sexually charged, hairsuit vlogger – I mean you. You’re not allowed to be ‘just a person’ anymore.
Nope. Because we are all painfully aware that Big Brother is watching us (and by Big Brother, I do mean your boss), we have to think of ourselves as brands now; carefully editing out anything too saucy, anything too unflattering, and anything too real for fear of those we wish to impress discovering that we were really nothing more than drugged up hippie perverts, this whole time.
As for me, well I don’t mind sharing lots of things. I share the photos I take of the things I’ve seen, I share on my blog my weird and wonderful thoughts for the entertainment of strangers, my privacy settings are standard issue.
But that’s because I believe that no matter how much you share, the you on Facebook, or Twitter, or indeed WordPress, is merely an avatar.
And although Google might be able to predict (based on your Magaluf ‘Oliday, waaaahhhhey) album that you might be interested in dating young ladies from Eastern Europe with large mammaries, what they’ll never know is what you worry about when you are trying to sleep, how you feel when you spend time with your brothers, that you secretly rock out to Iggy Pop in the shower.
There isn’t a computer programme in existence sophisticated enough to get to the heart of who you really are. So what are you really sharing?