Sometimes, navigating the do’s and don’ts of social media can be tricky. From figuring out what’s smart for your future to what’s just polite, we brought in an expert to answer your questions: Gail Hand, the author of Are You Sure You Want to Post That. So before stressing over that Twitter/Facebook/Vine/whatever post, read her advice!
This month . . . “Inappropriate” Reposts and Relationship Statuses
If I repost a funny photo and it gets flagged by my school as inappropriate, will I get in trouble for it? — JB
Thanks for the great question. Here’s what you need to remember, in situations like this: humor is subjective, whether it’s used online or in person. And what may seem funny to some—like a ridiculous picture of another person—can be seen as humiliating and bullying to others. But if you avoid political, racist, sexist, and foul language humor, you probably won’t get in trouble for it. If you want to play it safe, the picture would be of yourself, but not in degrading way. Self-deprecating humor is the highest form of humor and the safest—which is why so many comedians use it!
I know that sounds conservative, but the world is watching. Yes, you should express yourself, but take a second to think past the initial laughter to how people might be offended. Then make a good decision for you and your reputation. Laughter is awesome. Laughing at someone else’s expense isn’t.
What’s the big deal about posting relationship status on Facebook? — RC
Posting your relationship status online is fine if that’s the way you both roll. You just want to have a conversation about it with the person you’re dating first. Why does this matter if you’re in a happy relationship? Well, most students I talk to don’t mind posting their relationship status in the beginning. It’s just the part when you break up and both of you are not on the same page when you can get in hot water. Just remember that you may find yourself on either side of a breakup (the dumper and the dumped), so try to be kind in whatever you do and posting your status won’t be an issue.