Perhaps naïvely, I don’t consider my presence online particularly far-reaching. On Facebook, my relatively small list of friends consists only of people and met and spoken to in real life; and includes fewer and fewer people I knew from school and further back with whom I have no contact any more. What I think is interesting though, with regards having or no longer having on Facebook people whose views or mutual friends you no longer share; it is easy to live in a social media bubble of our own creation. During the last general election, for example, the vast majority of my Facebook friends and everyone I follow on Twitter was vocal about their support for Labour. The result, therefore, seemed inaccurate – everyone said they were voting Labour, what happened?! I read an article once about the importance of not deleting old acquaintances who share racist/sexist/homophobic views; because doing so shields up from the real world. It’s important to maintain even those tenuous connections to keep us aware of society’s opinions at large.
My Facebook profile may be reasonably private; but my Instagram and Twitter are completely public (with the same username). I like to think I post nothing offensive, controversial or potentially damaging to my future prospects – surely I don’t? – But probably that’s what Justine Sacco thought. In relation to LinkedIn, I have a cool one connection and I think it’s unlikely I’ll be racking up business contacts in the near future.