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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Sep 2014

Are you a compulsive social networker?

Snigdha Ahuja, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, June 22, 2013
First Published: 18:22 IST(22/6/2013) | Last Updated: 01:05 IST(23/6/2013)

Do you have a habit of updating your Facebook status every hour? Or Tweeting away your thoughts every minute? If you are a compulsive social networker, remember that the wide web can sometimes get you entangled and caught.

The share scare
The recent case of a Gurgaon pub coming under fire because of a blogpost which went viral, is a great example of the impact the internet community can have. Across the online community and the media, the post was ‘shared’ hundreds of times, forcing the restaurant’s PR to even issue an official statement denying the accusations. But, if it was a legal battle, would the post and pictorial evidence stand strong in court? If it’s in the public domain, yes it will.

The problem?
Internet is free for all, so everyone is free to be honest, or adversely — fake. Separating the real from the fabricated thus becomes the issue.

Getting personal
Privacy settings’ can be a tricky business to dabble with. So, in a personal battle, direct messages, updates and posts matter too.

“Me and my ex-girlfriend had a rocky relationship for a long time but the death knell rang when she lied to me. How did I find out? She had this habit of posting pictures on Instagram, of whatever she ate — of literally every meal. She ended up putting up a picture of a risotto with a happy tagline and something about ‘having the time of her life’ with her friends.

This is when she had told me she was sick, bed ridden. That was heartbreaking,” says 25-year-old marketing executive Prateek Khurana.

Networking smart
With ‘privacy’ becoming an ever evolving and even redundant term, it’s vital to network in a responsible manner. Whatever you post on a ‘personal’ blog is a public property at the end of the day, so if you are posting something online, it can be considered libelous if the facts are incorrect and can hurt another person’s/institution’s repute. So, it’s important to network smart. Expressing an opinion is our right, but doing it intelligently is our responsibility.

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