How often do we hear about the perils of social media? Don’t share your wild nights of debauchery, nobody cares about your relationship drama when it occurs every single day, and yeah those comments? They’re going to come back to bite you. We’ve seen people lose their jobs for inappropriate jokes made on social media, political scandals blow up over a few mishandled tweets, and all kinds of other news headlines develop due to the nature of social media.
Even when you’re following all rules, you still need to be aware of what you type and the possibility of consequences that can result. Very interesting consequences as I found out.
Let me properly set the mood. It’s summer of 2012 and for some un-forsaken reason the world had decided to fall in love with the ‘song’ “Gangnam Style” by Psy. You walked down the street and you were bound to see somebody trying to imitate the signature dance. IT WAS EVERYWHERE. I was that person who despised the song from the moment I heard it. The more I heard it, the more irritating it sounded to my ears. So I did what I do best, offer witty commentary.
“Think it would be rude to walk around with q-tips in my ears so I never have to suffer through listening to Gangnam Style again? Maybe people will just label me a trendsetter.”
I’ve always had my Facebook on pretty tight lockdown. I’m also pretty vigilant on being aware of saying anything that could be misconstrued in any negative way. With those two things, I figured the joke was only going to be amongst my family and friends who knew my distaste of the song. Harmless right?
I forgot about the comment until one day my friend and I were sitting in the student office during a lunch break. It was raining outside and we didn’t have much going on so we did what any bored university student would do – Google themselves. The results were mainly boring articles about us being overly involved on campus. But then, we did image search.
Why was there a pack of llamas as my second result?
Color me confused as the most interaction I’ve had with llamas was watching The Emperor’s New Groove. Curiosity too strong, we clicked the link. It took us to a Tumblr (which has sadly been deleted or else I would’ve linked it in a heartbeat) that somehow had gotten hold of my PRIVATE Facebook status. A pre-teen girl from the Philippines had managed to unearth my Facebook comments and let me tell you she was pissed. My status was screen-shotted along with my name and a rant about how I had to be taught a lesson gangnam style until I couldn’t do anything but the dance for the rest of my life. Their exact words, not mine.
We spent the rest of the hour laughing hysterically. I remember I slipped halfway out of my chair and had tears in my eyes due to us finding it so odd. (Fun fact: my friend will still randomly send me that gif years later.)
[ctt title=”Turns out what you say on the internet is never really private.” tweet=”Turns out what you say on the internet is never really private. via @katirose13 – http://ctt.ec/GkI5N+” coverup=”GkI5N”]
While I’m lucky that my situation turned out to be nothing more than a good story to share over beers, it’s not always that way. That day was long before I started my blog, but I know it made me have a realization about the true span of social media. It’s a lesson that is constantly in the back of my mind while I write each post. Do I want this information out in the world? Am I okay with a complete stranger reading this? Can I handle the possible fallout? They’re all worthy questions we must consider before pressing post as your blog is a reflection of you and even if it’s just your little piece of the world, you never know who may stumble across it.
Have you ever had any social media mishaps?
P.S. – Just because I keep in mind what I post doesn’t mean I shy away from controversial topics – The Cult of Celebrity anyone?
Until next time,