Don’t Be the TMI Twitter Guy
Everybody knows somebody who shares information that should be kept to themselves. I like to call that person “The TMI (Too Much Information) Guy.” Typically they are somebody you know at work or interact with in social settings. Now that social applications like Twitter and Facebook are bursting at the seams with new members, The TMI Guy is now your friend or follower.
Not only can this make your social media experience a not-so-fun one, but it can also hurt your online reputation with other friends and even employers. Imagine if TMI Guy starts blabbing about something embarrassing you did – it’s in their personality to share everything.
This is definitely a trend. Here are some tips to consider as you build your online networks, whether you know a potentially dangerous TMI Guy or happen to be TMI Guy yourself (shame!).
Keep personal matters off your wall. Many people who start using Facebook have posted sensitive information on their own or somebody else’s wall. Your wall is the first thing people typically see when looking at your page. This means private matters shouldn’t be here. Delete it away and let TMI Guy know about sending messages that only you can see, not something that can be shared around.
This concept also applies to Twitter. Some matters should be sent through a direct message, not blasted out to the world.
Your life is a series of links. Let’s say you and TMI Guy decide to ditch work and go to Las Vegas for the weekend, as your boss and fellow employees think you’re out sick. In fact, you post on your LinkedIn page that you’re feeling horrible to sell the story.
TMI Guy thought it was cool to post a video of your epic trip on Facebook. As your LinkedIn page might be linked to your Facebook page and remembering that everybody’s social media profiles can be easily found through search engine queries, you’re busted.
Just because TMI Guy is saying more than he should in one network doesn’t mean it’s okay. Personal and professional lives are blending more and more online today and people have been fired for less.
Don’t invite everybody. When you get a personal invitation in the mail, it’s normally meant for you and maybe a guest to know about. You’re getting that information because you’re a very important person. Sending social plans or invitations to everybody you know just isn’t classy and it could possibly hurt anybody you left out.
If something crazy happens during those social plans, posting them to everybody is just as much a faux-pas. Keep it to yourself or close company. And of course, everybody knows what you’re doing, which leads me to my next point…
Identity Theft’ed! If your home address is on your page and you say you’re on vacation for a week, a savvy crook would know it’s time to steal and you’re not there to put up a fight. TMI Guy may share a phone number in a public setting, but it’s easy to find out identification information from those numbers through a reverse lookup service on, you guessed it, the Web.
Keep your personal information like addresses, phone numbers, passwords, keycodes, social security numbers (!) and personal finances off social networks.
With all that said, the world of social media is a fun, happening place. You and TMI Guy can hopefully co-exist knowing this information and without too many awkward or painful situations.