Monday, August 23, 2010

Check Your Ego at the Door - How Social Media Lost Its Manners

What happened to common courtesy? More specifically, what happened to professionalism and good manners on social media platforms?

I'm not even talking about Facebook (not that I'm excusing anyone who uses Facebook to blast and criticize others!) It's time for people to start checking their ego at the door because there is no room in professional social networking for huge egos and negativity. It's turned into one big slam fest. I've written about this topic before but it seems to have grown worse over the summer months.

Why are these people so bitter? Did they lose their job? Do they hate the economy and give into all the negative hype in our world right now? Do they need a good dose of Deepak Chopra and Tony Robbins? What's up with their bad 'tudes?

It has turned into a "look at me, look at me!" show-down where these supposed business professionals try to one up each other. I've met some amazing people on LinkedIn and have found clients on there so the power of LinkedIn works - when people actually USE it in a positive way and aren't such Debbie and Danny Downers.

Competition is good - don't get me wrong. However, telling people they suck or people's posts are "just sad" (direct quote from a marketing professional on there who shall remain nameless) is beyond rude and unprofessional. As a freelancer, I always try to put my best "face" forward especially when my words represent who I am and my business brand. 

It's not surprising that people are getting fired from their jobs based on what they write on social media sites. If I had employees and saw the horrible things they wrote to other business professionals on LinkedIn, they would be fired - no questions asked.

So for all the egomaniacs who post on professional networking sites such as LinkedIn, I have one question for you: do you talk to your mother like that? I didn't think so!

My advice - skip over groups that don't interest you and keep your negativity to yourself. There's no need to harass, threaten, put down, criticize or chastize others because they don't have the same type of experience you have or GASP, they repeated the same information that someone just posted ten posts ago. 

If some of these egos are checked at the door - maybe just maybe - social media can find its manners again. I'm hopeful.


  1. Wow...I had no idea people were being so unprofessional in a business social media site like LinkedIn...but I happen to be a firm believer in the "you reap what you sow" philosophy, so they'll get what they deserve...

  2. It's pretty bad, Claudia. Start hanging out on my LI groups and you'll see just how mean and critical people are. I've opted out of some groups because people were out of control with their snide comments.

  3. Thanks Therese. . .one good thing about those negative Nellies though, it allows those that vibrate at a higher rate to find each other with ease on LI. Great to meet you today-- thanks for standing up and out from the crowd.

  4. Wow, LinkedIn? I've seen some dumb posts and dumb questions, but I keep those thoughts to myself. Let them look foolish. But to just criticize people! That's why I stopped posting a lot of places, people were so rude and it's like they get off on being mean. Meanwhile I was spending all night trying to determine if I should retort or not. Too much energy spent on negativity!

  5. Just came across this through my involvement in the Society for Professional Journalists group on LinkedIn. Well stated! I recently did a similar blog about an absolutely (I thought) *outrageous* exchange in another group I belong to- . *So* outrageous, in fact, that I thought maybe it was some kind of sociology experiment. (Sadly, I don't think that's the case.)

    The online social environment, just like the "real world" social environment is monitored and influenced by those participating in the conversations, of course. The issues are really no different-just the reach!

  6. Hi ladies,
    Thanks so much for your feedback.

    Vanessa, It was great "meeting" you as well - always nice to find someone who vibrates on the same level as me!

    Stephanie, No doubt. There are a lot of negative people in this world - I'll pass, thanks ha!

    Linda, I need to check out SPJ's group more on LinkedIn. Thanks for stopping by and saying hi/commenting!


Therese Pope, Copywriter/Content Developer & Digital Buzz-icist

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