Impulse Control and Social Media

22 Nov
Control Those Impulses!

Control Those Impulses!

You’ve been there before- you are walking along, going about your business, when an amusing thought crosses your mind, and you think, “That would make a great status update”.  Well, congratulations- Facebook has invaded your mind.

Now, when the clever thought occurs to you, do you post it instantly via your iPhone? Do you wait until you get home and then share your undeniable wit with everyone then? Or do you let the clever thought fall by the wayside, figuring that every passing thought is not worthy of spilling to the world?  I admit that I usually tend towards the latter course of action, but it takes a certain degree of willpower.  Without a certain degree of impulse control, it can be too easy to let the use of social media become an extension of the ego.

This idea that people feel compelled to express every opinion, joke and observation is not just limited to tweeting our physical locations and updating our status constantly.  I recently read the blog of the San Francisco Chronicle’s Mick LaSalle- a film critic who I like to read more for his skill with the written word than for this reviews of movies- and he wondered whether the people who leave mean comments all over the web are disproportionately mean individuals, or are normally decent folk who let their id run wild.  Anonymity, after all, means never having to own up to your rudeness (ironically, the people who left comments on this blog post were very well-behaved).

This brings us back to the idea of why people leave traces of themselves all over the internet.  It’s a medium for self-expression, for connecting to others, and in a way unlike we connect in real life.  There IS indeed more anonymity, more immediacy to it all.  And yet.  Just as we write ourselves on the web, we read others on the web. And just as we can grow tired of the rantings and ramblings of our friends and family- even those we admire; have you ever tried following ?uestlove of The Roots or marketing guru Guy Kawasaki? forget it!- others, naturally, can grow tired of us.  If we choose to let our brain leak out onto our feeds at all times.

A bit of impulse control is in order.  I don’t tweet from my phone and rarely use Facebook from my phone, precisely to avoid the impulse to share those random brain droppings with the world.  I have many amusing thoughts (or at least, they’re amusing to me).  But it is rather nice to keep most of them to myself.  I see Facebook and Twitter more as fun tools for connecting, personally and professionally, than as a way of projecting myself to everyone. Ick. I still cherish some sense of privacy (you’ll notice this blog is NOT under my real name).  Is it possible to impose some level of control on our more social, more connected online selves?  Let’s hope so.

103 Responses to “Impulse Control and Social Media”

  1. Mikalee Byerman November 22, 2010 at 3:51 pm #

    Ooh. I have a feeling you’re not going to like my current situation: I’m blogging about my soap opera life while fighting a court order attempting to prevent me from doing so. Uh-oh.

    However, I recognize there’s a fine line here, and it’s a mixed bag. People have a right to share, they simply tend to share too much. I’m trying to walk that fine line while doing something productive with the sh*@storm I’ve walked into.

    Interested in your thoughts on this one…

    • One Woman November 23, 2010 at 12:02 am #

      I am a blogging newbie with only a few posts and it takes a great deal of reading, re-reading, and courage to press that publish button. It is never a bad idea to take a step back from our own “profoundness” to be sure that what we are putting out there is worthwhile.

      One day I was feeling grumpy and wrote a blog that was decidedly negative and pointed but I left it in the draft folder. The next day it was deleted with a huge sigh of relief!

      So my final thoughts are: edit twice, press once!

      • lebanexican November 23, 2010 at 6:01 am #

        Edit twice, press once- words to live by.

      • arjunasoctopus November 23, 2010 at 3:52 pm #

        Very nice 😀

        I follow something similar to this advice. Edit over impulse ensures content quality.

        Great post Leb – it’s a button pusher and I like the way you weave your thoughts.


  2. Mikalee Byerman November 22, 2010 at 3:51 pm #

    …and you’ll notice I proudly use my real name! 😉

  3. The Simple Life of a Country Man's Wife November 22, 2010 at 3:52 pm #

    This is so true. This is why the ability to hide people from your newsfeed is a great option. I don’t want to remove the friendship (or family member), but the hourly update on the cold weather, the poor economy, the crappy job … yeah, glad I can hide the negativity 🙂

    • Terri November 23, 2010 at 8:28 am #

      I’m just glad I can hide the details of every meal, snack, nibble, and nosh. If I could implement one grossly unreasonable rule of censorship, it would be that no one but professional food and wine writers and chefs would ever be allowed to tweet or post a status update on what they ate. Ever.

  4. jacobtullos November 22, 2010 at 3:59 pm #

    You’ll notice that I’m leaving the comment using my real name. For me identity is what you make it. I carve my identity by the way I am with friends, with my family, and how I am a person (even when I’m alone). I’m a language learner so I feel that my identity is changed a little por los idiomas que aprendo. 😉 I’m a writer, so I gauge my identity by what I produce with the written word. I’m a memeber of the global digital community, so I feel that this comment helps construct who I am.

    I gree completely about the impulse control point. Even when I’m with my own wife, I don’t say everything that come to my mind… she’d think I was an idiot. We all have to censor ourselves all the time. We’re not animals… we make our own identity, we are masters of our own destiny. Sometimes, to preserves one’s name, one must do a little product quality control.

    Thanks for this post. I enjoy reading the identy you’ve carved for yourself, even if it’s through a created online persona…


  5. kima November 22, 2010 at 4:00 pm #

    Your post made me think about my own approach to social media — and blogging for that matter — as I saw it recently:

    You see, I agree that impulse control is in order … I have an Android phone and I don’t have data turned on, so when I go out for a lunch break or to have fun with my family I am not bothered with Twitter or Facebook

    On the other side, I disagree that Facebook and Twitter are just fun tools for connecting … I have my doubts around Facebook, but I think the value of Twitter is that you can make of it what you like/need … I am using it to connect with people and organizations that are relevant to some of my ideas and I have found it works great so far … and the great thing is that the use can be multi-faceted … while you’re trying to use it for something serious, there can be a fun component to it too 😉

    Btw, your background made me wishing to visit my favorite Lebanese restaurant 😉


  6. lenteaticepick November 22, 2010 at 4:04 pm #

    Great post about how today’s culture is really bith relaxed and agressive about self-expression, thank you!

  7. dearexgirlfriend November 22, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    you make me question my very existence. ha. im not that bad but seriously, when i get these impulses im definitely going to think of this post.

  8. Lenore Diane November 22, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    Nice. I’ve said similar things a time or three about the need for restraint, especially when it comes to rudeness and meanness. And humor? Well, convenient for me, if I don’t write down my self-proclaimed humorous or clever status update, I soon forget it.

    Thanks for the post!

  9. [postage stamp required] November 22, 2010 at 4:25 pm #

    …well…i want to leave a comment…but now i’m torn (lol)

    • Ingridd Addison November 23, 2010 at 2:22 pm #


      just an acknowledgement of a real lol. 🙂

      oh, but that is an impulse, isn’t it?


  10. Steve November 22, 2010 at 4:27 pm #

    There is definitely a dark-negative side to the Internet and Technology.

    The key is knowing what to avoid and look out for.

  11. Contactless November 22, 2010 at 4:28 pm #

    Perhaps the problem here is the thorny business of cultural and moral relativism – where there are no longer clear standards of ‘goodness’ or ‘badness’ anymore, and everything is essentially up for grabs; just so long as it raises one’s profile. It can be reasonably argued that this pluralist thinking leads to a phenomenon where a famous serial-killer is given the same degree of attention as say a famous brain surgeon?

    The attainment of even a modicum of fame / notoriety is everything. Twitter and Facebook – remarkable tools in themselves, although like all types of technology both remain essentially neutral. But as there are more entrants to the marketplace then the stakes will be no doubt be raised – until every nuance of our lives is there to be shared with others. This is great news for the unscrupulous and criminal fraternity too; and I suspect that in the decades to come ‘an individual’s identity’ will be the premier commodity to trade in. Wait until the ‘contactless’ roll-out really kicks in – then it’ll get interesting, and we may be forced to reconsider the sense in sharing so much with so many. Just a thought.

  12. Jason November 22, 2010 at 4:29 pm #

    I usually reason with myself that my “witty” thought can be put on the back burner indeinitely because — if it’s SUCH a ground-breaking thought — it will be reabsorbed into the collective consciousness and someone ELSE will put it as their status update for me. And — if it’s important enough — it will make its way around the web and find its way onto my news feed in no time. Then I’ll be left with that gnawing sense of Déjà vu or cringing that someone “stole” my idea!

  13. mollyschoemann November 22, 2010 at 4:50 pm #

    I like this post and definitely agree that social media should be a way of connecting with others rather than projecting yourself to the world. Sometimes it’s nice to hold onto a thought and to refine it and ponder it for a while before you send it out into the ether. I worry that people are becoming averse to simply sitting and ruminating on ideas; they’d rather send them out to the world the moment they occur, which means they’re likely still half-baked.

    • cristinafra November 23, 2010 at 9:47 am #

      Totalmente de acuerdo con tus comentarios, yo tambien creo que antes de enviar al universo tus pensamientos se tienen que madurar y no soltar sin freno

  14. Evie Garone November 22, 2010 at 4:54 pm #

    So totally agree! People really like to tell you way TMI and I don’t know about you, I really do not care what car they drive, not impressed, how often they vacation, etc. If they are hungry go feed their face, etc.

  15. Incognito November 22, 2010 at 4:59 pm #

    This is the third, maybe fourth Facebook post that has made it to freshly pressed (admittedly since i started noticing it) and once again i’m nodding because i know what you mean…I had fb…i was the one to most use fb day and night…i had a trial separation with fb…i deleted fb…

    Life is so much simpler without it, and in all honesty the ‘world’ does not NEED to know about my witty one liners…haha…i’m a much happier person without it and my witty one-liners keep me amused if no1 else!

    Enjoying your blog…and congratulations for making it to the front page 🙂


  16. bookjunkie November 22, 2010 at 5:00 pm #

    I love what you’ve stated here. It just needed to be said.

    I really needed this affirmation as I’ve just disabled (they make it so hard to delete) by Facebook account and am having withdrawal symptoms. Facebook was just intruding too much into my time and space.

    • lebanexican November 23, 2010 at 3:49 am #

      Wow, you actually left Facebook, bravo! Am sometimes tempted to, but just when I think I’m out….they pull me back in. And yes, hard to believe email now feels old-fashioned.

  17. Sathya November 22, 2010 at 5:05 pm #

    “… it can be too easy to let the use of social media become an extension of the ego.” – how so very true 🙂

  18. Ava Aston's Muckery November 22, 2010 at 5:31 pm #

    Yet, for those of us that have a music career (and what we feel is an important message within our music) the immediacy of social networking helps us spread our message to the masses, which to us, is a very rewarding and necessary thing.

    I choose to use my real name on all that I do, not for ego sake, but because to me it is my brand. With the constant bombardment of information and media from so many different sources now the consumer needs a constant reminder of a brand in order to retain it.

    Congrats on being freshly Pressed!



  19. Frances November 22, 2010 at 5:38 pm #

    I agree that people need some impulse control with social media. I have friends on Facebook using Foursquare to keep other people updated of their whereabouts at all times. I don’t get it and I’ll admit, it has changed my opinion of them. I also really don’t understand when people use social media to share their domestic quarrels with their entire social circle. Do they really want that filthy mouth and spiteful attitude immortalized on their family’s Facebook feed forever? Using social media to ruin someone’s reputation, makes the author look even worse.

  20. Juicy In Italy November 22, 2010 at 5:41 pm #

    TOTALLY had to go look at the “Are People as Horrible as Their Comments” and this guy and you are totally correct. For my self (even if it’s my online identity) if I say it on the internet I surly can say it in “real” life but that is just how I roll. Great post!

    • lebanexican November 23, 2010 at 3:57 am #

      Like they say, if you wouldn’t say it in front of your Mom, don’t tweet it (if it’s that off-color/personal, send it in a private message).

  21. Sunflowerdiva November 22, 2010 at 5:44 pm #

    I totally agree with you. I hardly ever post status updates to Facebook or Twitter from my phone anymore, and I see the world of social media as an addiction that we have to work hard at putting some distance from.

    On my own blog I never put my real name, and protect my friends and family trying to never mention their names, of if I must, I use a fake name for them.

    Leaving traces all over the internet is what the internest wants, and I hate it. Privacy on the internet is impossible, sadly.

    Very interesting post. And congrats on getting Freshly Pressed!

  22. Ryan Rosado November 22, 2010 at 5:44 pm #

    Wow, you really hit this topic spot on. I really enjoy reading your post b/c I relate to it all too much. I like to keep my status updates to twice a week max lol. Unless something really awesome is going on in my life. I also Tweet mainly for business purposes but totally see your point about people stroking their own ego by becoming consumed by their tweets and status updates. You get 4 *s 😀

  23. J DUBBS November 22, 2010 at 5:47 pm #

    haha, great post. it’s a struggle for me not to tweet everything i find funny. plus, no one wants to be ‘that person’…you know, the one that tweets everything they do and feel in too much detail, that annoys the crap out of everyone else.

  24. sambyte November 22, 2010 at 5:53 pm #

    This is an interesting article! I recently looked into how Facebook has affected us technologically and culturally, and you addressed the later component well. While I still am a Facebook user, I minimize my usage of it so that I can keep my personal life to myself and maintain a sense of peace and quiet. Whenever I work on my schoolwork and projects, I refrain from using its website by resorting to chat (exclusively) via Meebo; sometimes, I botch the chatting altogether and talk to my partners directly. I also cancel most of my email notifications through Facebook’s “Account Settings” to cut out what I consider distractions in my life. Although I cannot stop myself from sending the occasional notification, I still believe that making concrete actions to minimize the usage of technologies like Facebook is important towards balancing my intake of both the physical and digital realm.

  25. LainaLain November 22, 2010 at 5:55 pm #

    Most of the social networking sites are kind of boring sometimes. I think that’s because I don’t have many amusing thoughts and even if I did, the world probably wouldn’t understand my humor. xD

  26. Jessica S November 22, 2010 at 5:56 pm #

    Haha. I think this was the best blog post I’ve ever read!

  27. Bear November 22, 2010 at 5:57 pm #

    I like where your thoughts are. Think about this though. Let’s say you ARE one of those people that update from your phone every time you have any sort of brain function. Awesome. Now the creativity is flowing. Especially if you’re a smart person, such as yourself. Anything you put on that facebook is going to make somebody (someone you know, someone you like, someone who you just met, a potential employer, or whoever else is looking at your facebook) say, “hey, this person is interesting”.
    Every single post you make is another little piece of you for others to put together. It’s mind blowing how social media is changing the world. But I don’t think it’s bad that some people are fully integrated. I think it’s great. More ways to integrate branding strategies and the likes.

  28. fireygoddess November 22, 2010 at 5:57 pm #

    I like the conversation you’ve begun ~ both as a therapist and a fellow blogger with medium clever thoughts! Interesting, thanxs.

  29. halthit13 November 22, 2010 at 6:32 pm #

    I think it’s a lot harder for young people to have the sense of control over their impulses that you do (you sound a little more sophisticated than a teenager), but I definitely agree with you that people can get carried away when there is an immediate outlet for their thoughts. Hence, I deleted my Facebook page and got a blog because it’s a much better space for my thoughts.

  30. tweety November 22, 2010 at 6:36 pm #

    so true Leban!

  31. therisingpage November 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm #

    LOL! When I joined Facebook – Gosh, i spent my every second on it. Then I discovered Twitter – and i could do it on my mobile phone…I went insane 😉
    I definitely agree, it takes a certain degree of will power to reign in those thoughts.

  32. shelbycastile November 22, 2010 at 7:11 pm #

    “social media is an extension of the ego” — SO true, I just might have to post as my status update. haha j/k

    Much better for me too, to stay on the DL and remain somewhat private about the details of my life.

    thanks for posting.

  33. enjoibeing November 22, 2010 at 7:16 pm #

    i like the idea of impulse control. before when I had facebook and would check it on my phone or at home i would always see a long line of statuses with random bs that i really dont want to see. some things should be kept to yourself or a close group of friends that gets your humor. great post! and congrats on being freshly pressed

  34. workingtechmom November 22, 2010 at 7:22 pm #

    Love the post and agree…also have an anonymous blog so I can post daily musings without having to be my full, in person, controlled self…but still don’t allow it to encourage my self rantings!

    I love the photos on your background – it’s making me hungry – and wish I had the cool hat worn by your impulse girl. 🙂

    Congrats on being freshly pressed. Keep on blogging!

  35. brainicide November 22, 2010 at 7:24 pm #

    “A bit of impulse control is in order.” Excellent assertion. I just wrote an article touching on some of these points– basically because it peeves me to login and see all the intimate details of my friends lives. There are some things people should just keep to themselves. 🙂

  36. Prius Envy November 22, 2010 at 7:33 pm #

    Who says it has to be even a witty and/or clever throught to make it to Facebook? Yikes! The stuff some people post is absolutely ridiculous and sometimes makes me feel bad for these “friends.”

    …But then again I find it morbidly entertaining, so much so, I can’t bring myself to delete them.

    I guess I feed their overshares…. sigh…
    Bridget and the Girls with Prius Envy

  37. alisonsalt November 22, 2010 at 7:46 pm #

    Some interesting observations, although I question the reflex to post on facebook or tweet as an impulse of the ego. I think the ways in which we formulate our identity, our selfhood is under constant modification, particularly with the technologies available to us. We have not had for some time the comfort of a particular ‘role’ whether professional or familial as we become more and more of a transient society (inter-personally as well), thus lacking various cultural structures, we seek others. This is neither here or there in terms of ethics, it just seems to me that it reflects a desire for people to connect through expression, no matter what a minefield language and communication may be. Just a couple of thoughts.

  38. Yusra November 22, 2010 at 7:54 pm #

    The only reason I don’t go around writing my (admittedly awesome) thoughts right onto my blog is because the lengthy posts I have in mind are far too difficult to reproduce through a phone. And by the time I get home, I’ve forgotten most of it.

  39. auntbethany November 22, 2010 at 8:54 pm #

    Since beginning my own blog, I have not told any close friends or family, excluding 2 exceptions. I rather like have my own private secret…a place where it would be nearly impossible to vent about my own life, because, frankly, no one else in the blog-o-sphere would really understand it! I’m forced to write about topics that are accessible to everyone, and negativity doesn’t really find a place. Never thought about it this way until I read your post. Kudos on FP!

  40. notesfromrumbleycottage November 22, 2010 at 8:57 pm #

    Hmmm, interesting post. The problem with facebook is you are not undercover. Your name is right there so if you rant about something in an unreasonable manner. Perhaps what you rant about should be like parenting – pick and choose that which you should post/argue about.

  41. RMGreen November 22, 2010 at 9:53 pm #

    I always have thought it’s interesting that the most hateful people never give out their real name… like they know better, but think anonymity is license.

  42. Lori @ WittyLittleSecret November 22, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

    But what if you really are simple-minded and like reading about your friends’ Bejeweled scores and lost farm animals? You are advocating censorship of the American right to be arrogantly vain and indignantly disgusted by things we ourselves have all done in the secrecy of our cars. Anyway, if it weren’t for a status update, how would I have found out about peopleofwallmart dot com?

    • lebanexican November 23, 2010 at 5:59 am #

      You make a very good point, Lori!

      • wittylittlesecret November 23, 2010 at 4:52 pm #

        Just kiddin with ya. Congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

  43. bluecloverbelle November 22, 2010 at 10:02 pm #

    Interesting points made in this post! I have to say i can’t help my constant status updates on fb, i guess i feel the need to share stuff going on! At least i can safely say that i don’t reveal TOO much, like some people i know who will literally publish ANYTHING, normally stuff you really don’t WANT to know because its very wrong!
    I do find myself wishing i didnt feel the need to post so many statuses each day, and i now find myself going back and deleting the really pointless/tragic statuses later on in the day when i’m at home and randomly surfing the net.

  44. rtcrita November 23, 2010 at 12:09 am #

    Luckily, we can still choose to view or read what we wish to and avoid those sites, tweets, updates, etc. that are annoying. For myself, I choose not to read those comments and tweets and such that are nothing more than mindless dribble from people I don’t even know personally. I search out the ones that have something of value to add to my life, or those whose sites/blogs I have run across by chance that have caught my attention through their content–be it charming, witty, informative, or whatever. Their quick bursts of comments or tweets will usually be just as interesting to me later. You can almost tell by what people write whether or not this is someone you would avoid in real life or with whom you would want to strike up a conversation.

    P.S. That dish on your background looks delicious!

  45. kkonvo November 23, 2010 at 12:36 am #

    Thanks for the great post! I appreciate it when someone shares a particularly witty thought (it’s been months since someone has though). I don’t care to hear that my ex-coworker is tired and I really don’t care to read my sister-in-law’s daily sagitarius horoscope.
    I enjoy facebook posts that invite me and other to participate. Because we are engaging…there’s a certain amount of give & take.
    Too often facebook and twitter are used by people who toss out little bits of information, sometimes too personal, often just boring and then they duck back into their little pockets of solitude. I’m here to give something and get something in return! Where did you go?

  46. Robert Samuel November 23, 2010 at 12:57 am #

    Great article and very necessary. People need to think before posting that they just made noodles and found a third nipple. 🙂

  47. Stephen Mc Elligott November 23, 2010 at 1:35 am #

    this post has certainly been a light to me let me tell you. Irish and weak that I am, I am in dire need of a vacation from facebook and other social networking sites. Gets boring after a while to be honest.

  48. wisnusumarwan November 23, 2010 at 3:43 am #

    I Agree….
    Sometimes we put those Social Media into our life too far….

    Really love your writing…

  49. thisisnessie November 23, 2010 at 4:08 am #

    I was starting to think I was in the minority on this subject! I find the amount of personal information and facebook friends who use the platform as a way to expressive passive aggressiveness, overwhelming. In that way, FB still favours anonymity amongst people, because people can be obtuse to a large group of people and still get their rant in without anyone (except perhaps the guilty party, but unlikely) knowing that they’re talking to/about them.
    Another thing is this new ‘I Like’ option, with some often really random subject material that you have no option to hide from your news feed or comment on “Tina liked ‘I like squirell butts they are so furry” and “Woman don’t mess with me I am a diva and you will know about it” on Like.” It’s one of those things I find especially self-obsessive and forceful onto other people.
    I prefer to use the social network for socialising. I don’t use my status as a soapbox, but to start a conversation.
    That being said, I have a blog for anything more than a single thought or idea or expression. Nobody is forced to read it, which makes all the difference. I think a lot of people who turn up their noses at blogging as ‘self-centered’ don’t really understand the value of blogging, not even the catharsis it can provide without telling your whole social circle that you’re upset. Once again.

  50. clancashire123 November 23, 2010 at 4:20 am #

    You have some very interesting thoughts on socail media, but I have to ask, isn’t that the point of social media to project your thoughts and ideas onto others? Without mediums like Twitter and Facebook getting the word out about your veiws on thing is limited. Wasn’t Facebook created for students to connect, then it expanded to the rest of the world? Have Twitter and Facebook at your fingertip is the Public Relations’ dream.

  51. tayjengchu November 23, 2010 at 7:08 am #

    Well written essay. I think this whole digital identity thing requires us to pay more attention to our image online, especially nowadays where everyone can just google our name and get a good idea who we are before even knowing us physically. I wrote down my thoughts on a similar topic in my new blog. Feel free to check it out!!

  52. sayitinasong November 23, 2010 at 8:02 am #

    Not only do I stop and think if I should post certain “witty gems” (in my mind at least) as the fb status update- but I notice I keep telling my friends to do the same… “you should put that on your facebook”…lol…

  53. ajeya November 23, 2010 at 8:54 am #

    good post. Congrats. Consider this statement. An open book is often ignored . While blogging itself is on the decline ,f and t splashed over sites make a frantic attempt to grab attention . Everything has a saturation point . As a famous quote suggests ‘there should be moderation in everything . Moderation even in moderation’

  54. Robert Schmidt November 23, 2010 at 9:50 am #

    We probably are all guilt of using Facebook too much, but I have not yet got myself addicted to twitter.

    I have maintained it as a “mature” tool (I.E no silly tweets about my favrouite TV show), and primarily use it as a great way of maintaining and expanding business contacts.

    The same can’t be said for Facebook, too many incriminating photos…..

  55. cristinafra November 23, 2010 at 9:53 am #

    Me ha gustado esta entrada, describe muy bien mis pensamientos, en estos momentos que tenemos tantos medios y tan faciles para podernos comunicar, se ha de saber gestionar y valorar lo que vamos a aportar al resto del universo

  56. Avinash Sagar November 23, 2010 at 10:27 am #

    I love your post and totally agree with you that we need to restrain before putting up anything/everything that we believe is humorous and witty. Infact, we are “taught” by the status messages that we see. More the people on your friendlist..use it as a extension of their ego..more you are likely to do it.. It is post(s) like this that show us there are people who get irked by this trait of others, and it is noce for me to know about all of them. The “Lebanexican” and others who have commented on this post.
    Btw, congrats on being freshly pressed!
    When you have some time pls check my post “Top Six Personalities on Facebook” on

  57. Cassidhe Hart November 23, 2010 at 10:30 am #

    Once upon a time, I read a beautiful book about art and solitude and waiting (Letters to a Young Poet by Rilke), and my (almost) first thought was, “I need to put something about this book in my facebook status!”
    That was the day I deleted my facebook profile.
    I had allowed its version of reality to become a parasite on my own reality.
    Kudos to you for doing things differently – for having will power – without deleting your facebook presence.

  58. louboutian November 23, 2010 at 11:27 am #

    Wasn’t Facebook created for students to connect, then it expanded to the rest of the world? Have Twitter and Facebook at your fingertip is the Public Relations’ dream

  59. Sixthirtythree November 23, 2010 at 12:11 pm #

    I found your post quite amusing, as I am one for ranting and raving and rambling either on Facebook when I had it, and a more subdued version of my Facebook persona on Twitter. It’s wonderful to read the rantings of others,although I am wary of detailed locations, for I think a psycho may be reading their tweets and run out to get them. Yes, imagination runs wild with that one, but it can happen. People have been robbed after they have tweeted that they have gone on vacation. There are limits and people need to use common sense, myself included, so as not to post something that will get them fired or lose out on a great job in the future.

    Yes, I think of witty thoughts when I am off-line and laugh, and write them down so I don’t forget when I am online. I rant less and less these days, mostly out of trying to subdue the negative energy.

    We need more self-expression, hopefully, it keeps people from going insane, or worse…killing each other.

    I vote for let loose, with some common sense! A contradiction, I suppose.

  60. The Ramblings Of A Demented Mind November 23, 2010 at 12:20 pm #

    Totally agree with you! You have done a good job summing up it all! 🙂

  61. snoringdogstudio November 23, 2010 at 12:35 pm #

    I left Facebook (gladly) about a month ago. I wasn’t really learning anything new and, well, if people really think I’m that fascinating, they’ll keep up with me through other methods. I just don’t need the day by day, hour by hour update. I do find Twitter to be useful but only because I’m very selective about who I follow. And I don’t have a problem unfollowing or blocking – how else am I going to keep the volume down? I’ve been seeing a lot of posts on this topic and even posted two myself – one on Twitter rules and one on my breakup with Facebook. So, it’s starting to look like people are getting over the novelty and wanting something much more.

  62. travelingmad November 23, 2010 at 1:13 pm #

    Coincidentally we just talked about this same subject in my Global Communications class this morning.

    We discussed how various companies and brands have invaded our everyday lives and habits until there is not more privacy. Some people update their facebook status multiple times per day!

    It is growing increasingly harder to exercise the impulse control you talk about when it comes to all this social media. We are bombarded with so much of it it is hard to get a break from it sometimes.

    (Congrats on being freshly pressed.)

  63. nearlynormalized November 23, 2010 at 1:17 pm #

    “Words and deeds are living things.” Friends mother said that to me…Only in some state of growing up did it make sense…”Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never harm me.” I say, hmmm. Being able to vent with out picking up the sticks or stones, appeals to me more than an AK-47 or any other means of assault. Ramble done, fine cup of coffee flowing through my body.

  64. ravenswingpoetry November 23, 2010 at 1:57 pm #

    I’m inclined to believe that social media is neither good nor bad, but it is what we make of it. I use Twitter and Facebook as extentions for both of my poetry blog and my Asperger’s blog, and I avoid going with the random thoughts of my brain as much as possible. Yes, both poetry and my journey with Asperger’s are rather personal parts of my life, but there is a sense of selective sharing with which I approach my online life. And I think judging from the comments, I am not the only one who does this.


  65. aaaummm November 23, 2010 at 2:11 pm #

    Blogaphy: When you perform activities in your life just so you can put them into your blog.

  66. nrhatch November 23, 2010 at 2:26 pm #

    clap . . .claP . . .clAP . . . cLAP . . . CLAP!!!

    {{wild applause}}

    • lebanexican November 24, 2010 at 2:04 am #

      And that is the sound of one hand clapping! Thank you.

  67. jessiepeace November 23, 2010 at 3:14 pm #

    As a human race I think we crave understanding and acceptance, posting our every thought on facebook and twitter makes us believe that we are showing people who really are. But really we are just as your kind of saying boosting our “ego”.

    But thats a good thing right, we need more self esteem in this world there is enough self loathing. We are subject to scrutiny everyday, every day we see all those beautiful people on the TV and films. We need our ego bust.

  68. Rebecca November 23, 2010 at 3:54 pm #

    This is so true. I feel like a lot of people who post random thoughts/complaints on sites, such as Facebook, just want attention. I personally don’t want the whole world to know what goes on in my life every second of the day.

  69. Sunnshyne November 23, 2010 at 6:49 pm #

    I agree that some brain droppings are best left undropped as it were. I appreciate your insight and would like to thank you for sharing. I hope you don’t mind, but I am going to link this on my wall, so other people who feel the absolute urgent need (like one of my offspring) to update every time they sneeze, eat, take a shower, take a nap, go to a store or have an angry moment on their wall, that they might want to STOP and NOT do it!

  70. Lolchocobo November 24, 2010 at 7:31 pm #

    Thankfully, I have less of a problem with this because my phone is an old one which cannot connect to the Internet. So no Facebook on the go!

    I think that whatever we put online about lives follows the stereotypical TV show formula: no one cares what you ate today and that you walked your dog in the park; they want to know if you saw someone doing something stupid or something totally out of the ordinary. Or in some cases, some kind of inner reflection for the more literary-appreciative readers.

  71. Anna Holcombe November 24, 2010 at 11:04 pm #

    The impulsiveness of constantly checking my email window to see what’s come in, checking FB, checking work email- and why am I even doing this at home if I don’t have to?

    For me, it’s all about impulse control with online media and learning to use these ways of communicating/connecting with others/new ideas in a conducive way, rather than one that is merely distracting.

    I think it’s a paradigm shift in HOW we engage in conversation online instead of a mass run towards the computer screen to be a part of it all, all at once, kind of thing.

  72. Charlotte Jewell November 26, 2010 at 12:24 pm #

    I see a lack of impulse control regularly on my facebook live feed. Lots of my “friends” (people I have not met/rarely speak to/don’t like) write such useless statuses that I wonder who they think is actually interested in them? Things like “so-and-so is watching TV”.
    There’s nothing of interest that I can take from this sort of status.
    Sometimes I realise some of my statuses can be seen in this way, which makes me delete them.

    The fact that facebook apps are available on phones does increase useless statuses – I often post while Im waiting for a class or a person to meet me.

    I think facebook is now less about connecting with old friends, and more about showing off your lifestyle.

  73. avmartinez November 27, 2010 at 5:30 pm #

    I often find myself amused with observations or overheard comments from people on the streets. But my immediate reaction is not to pull out my phone and post it online. I agree with you that too often people feel need the overshare every aspect of their life. I have no interest in what everyone ate for lunch. Nor do I expect them to care what I ate for lunch. There are times when I contemplate deleting people from Facebook or Twitter because they post updates every 20 minutes. Who has time for that? I’m lucky if I can find time to update once a week. And like you said, some things are better kept to yourself. But I think the bigger question is: are social networking sites such as Facebook creating a generation of egocentric users? My guess is yes. And that’s terrifying.

  74. evilcyber November 28, 2010 at 1:40 am #

    The internet is a “medium for self-expression”?

    I beg to differ, the internet is a source for information; everything else is more or less a form of masturbation by proxy.


  75. gypsyjetsetter November 29, 2010 at 10:43 pm #

    Ha fantastic blog post! I thought I was the only one who related daily life to facebook updates, I’m relieved to find I’m not alone;).

    PS the hummus looks great, and lebanexican is very clever.

    -The Eurasian


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