Oversharing on Social Media

High profile social media gaffes, in some cases costing individuals their jobs, have led to increased attention – and discretion –surrounding Facebook and Twitter posts.  Nonetheless, users consistently and unwittingly reveal personal details on less publicized social media platforms that could prove to be just as troubling.  For instance, the peer-to-peer payment app Venmo publicly shares all payment transactions in a social media style feed viewable to anyone who has a user account on the site unless users adjust their privacy settings to prevent public sharing.  Another example:  Publicly shared golf scores on club websites or amateur scoreboards, which can allow anyone to determine when an individual was golfing – potentially an issue for someone with other scheduled obligations.  In an age of increased sharing, these are good reminders for individuals to exercise discretion and always check their privacy settings.  From the researcher’s perspective, be aware that the public records playing field is constantly expanding.