Too Much Information?

With the emergence of social networking sites like MySpace, Twitter and Facebook, why have we felt the need to over-share intimate details of our lives? Have we really become that self-absorbed that we feel the need to provide a play by play on what you are actually thinking at the moment (and not the thoughts that should be shared)?

I’m just as guilty as the next person for over-sharing from time to time. I have posted a thing or two that felt warranted at the time it was posted, but when a clearer head prevailed, I was slightly embarrassed by my comments. This is what I call a common sense filter and while mine might not function at 100% capacity all of the time, it does the job it should. I had assumed we all had one, but apparently I am wrong.

For example, my Facebook home page has become a bleak landscape of stuff I don’t really care about and to be honest, I am embarrassed to have every accepted these people as my “friends”. I’m a very open minded person and am certainly not easily shocked or by any means a prude, but after reading their comments day after day, I just feel awkward, exhausted and overwhelmed.

There are certain people that feel the need to consistently post comments full of explicit language with spelling mistakes, all without any point to their rants. If you plan on ranting, at least get the swear words right, otherwise you just appear desperate and uneducated. Others feel the need to share comments like “I just want to end my life” or “everyone would be better off without me, if I just left and never came back” or “I’m thinking about getting a boob job”.

If these posts are meant to be “cries for help”, I don’t mean to sound harsh, but in my opinion their cries are going unheard because the majority of their 1,000 plus Facebook “friends” are just as shallow and whiny as they are. It’s like watching a train wreck of “one-up manship”.

Then, there is other end of the “friend” spectrum - those exhibitionists that are constantly posting pictures of themselves in revealing outfits or compromising positions. Why don’t they just post “look at me, I have low self-esteem and need my 1,069 “friends” to comment on just how beautiful “I think” I am”?

Is it possible to “defriend” someone on Facebook without looking like a total tool - especially given that most of these individuals are actually related to me?

Admittedly, yes I’m sharing personal details of my life that would otherwise be unknown, as I’ve chosen blogging as my means of expression; however I do not feel the overwhelming urge to provide you with the intimate details of my love life, personal quarrels or personal demons. Perhaps if I did, things would be a little more interesting for you…


K13 said…
i've defriended a few people from time to time. if they ever say anything, I blame in on an application everytime.

and if they try to re-friend you, don't accept and don't ignore, then they can't continue to try and you can always chalk it up to that you just don't have much time for FB.
I've filtered a lot of things. For example only certain friends can see photos or updates and I don't allow every comment I post on anybody elses page pop up on mine. I'm pretty private but then again all the people on my FB are people I have physically met. You could always limit your profile you know, that way you won't get the inane comments or have to see inane comments. I hid several people on my newsfeed too.
Brian Miller said…
"a train wreck of 'one up manship'" love that visual and play well with social networking. one positive note is i have contact with people that I lost contact with over the years i never would have seen again most likely. but it rarely lasts...i share quite a bit on the blog, but thats me i guess.
Sylvia said…
That really sounds like a Vanity Fair. I guess when people have nothing to say they just start talking nonsense. The spelling is a real problem of our society and has a lot to do with uninterested teaching at schools. Unfortunately, as a teacher, I say. I used to teach my children how to correct their own spelling mistakes, but too many times I was told that according to the New Education I shouldn't. The pupils cannot be aware that there are spelling mistakes in their writings. Of course I continued to do as I believe.
Excellent post. Keep going...
CrazyCris said…
there's also an option on facebook that allows you to NOT see their updates and stuff! it's kind of like half defriending them? they can still see your stuff but for you to see what they've been up to you actually have to go look on their profile page... in other words you're ignoring them! ;o)
I've done it to quite a few "friends"
Thanks everyone - I'm going to try some of your suggestions because these people are just sucking the life out of me.

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