Are we a generation of oversharers?

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By Stephanie Vacchio

Twitter. Foursquare. Google Buzz. Flickr. And yes, the infamous Facebook status update. These are all ways in which our generation (and even some computer savvy members of our parents’ generation) share the intimate details of daily life.

We frequently tweet about what we are buying at the mall (“OMG this new dress from Forever 21 makes my butt look amazing—definitely wearing it out tonight!”) and let everyone known when we check in at our favorite restaurants on Foursquare (Monday, September 12, 2010, 5:04 PM- Cheesecake Factory, Albany, NY).

We upload pictures of our swanky European vacations on Flickr (Caption: Me and my baby at the Louvre. Paris is sooooooo super romantic!) and supplement our trip with subsequent Facebook updates (Paris is the city of lights—and love! My amazing boyfriend just bought me the most AMAZING Longchamp bag! Kisses!!!!).

First of all, no one—seriously, not one person on this earth—wants to know how AMAZING your boyfriend is for buying you a bag. A handbag is not romantic. And neither is sharing the intimate details of your relationship with all 1,391 friends in your network.

I’ll admit, those who are [un]fortunate enough to be my friends on Facebook know I love to update my status. A lot. I love to share how I feel, not necessarily what I am feeling, all the time. I can’t help it, I’m Italian! But there is definitely a difference between sharing a great song lyric or a political view and letting the whole world know you forgot your lunch today for the tenth time this month. (Seriously, you just look dumb if you write that. Invest in post-its).

My personal favorite is when people write self-critical statements like “I feel gross today” or “Worst. Day. Ever.” Upon seeing a posting like that, a light bulb should be going off in your head saying, “what this person really means is ‘I need attention,’” which is probably what they should have made their status anyway and cut right to the chase.

The desperate person in this scenario is just begging people to write, “Awww honey! What happened?” They want sympathy cocktails. They want someone to listen to them whine about their boss or professor or their shitty ex-boyfriend who just posted scandalous pictures of him and his new girlfriend.

Everyone has a bad day. And everyone can vent. But the key to properly venting is to pick up the phone and call one friend; don’t expect the entire Facebook universe to care.

Oversharing is a sickness to which our generation subscribes. We love to let people know what we are doing, and where we are, and how we are feeling 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

This is not only disgustingly annoying, but also extremely unsafe. Letting the entire Facebook/Twitter/Google world know that you are miles away from your home on a luxurious and ‘romantic’ vacation is a surefire way to get robbed (hope you made sure to take all of your valuables with you). Miami is fabulous, but your friends on Facebook won’t be missing out on anything if they don’t know you are there. Upon getting back from the beach, your priority numero uno will be uploading your pics to a new Facebook album, titled something deceptively clever like ‘Sangria, Sun, and String Bikinis.’ (Thanks in advance for those stellar visuals).

However, the absolute worst Facebook status mistake is when people post sappy love song lyrics or hateful jabs at their exes after a breakup. You look pathetic, so stop. Even without your lovesick lyrics, Facebook enjoys letting your network know you and your ex have broken up via news feed updates, which is a fabulous way of garnering support for your broken heart (“You are so much better off without him!”). Lame. Let the ex-haters come to you;  don’t force their sympathetic commentary through the use of John Mayer song lyrics.

There are things that we should be happy to share with the world: a new job, a new school year, a new puppy. But no one cares about a new bag. No one wants to see you desperate for attention or desperate to get your ex back. Stop Tweeting that your neighbor is annoying or that your boss is too uptight. The Internet is perpetual, and as we have seen with many a starlet, it can come back to bite you.

[Sunday, September 12, 2010, 11:49 PM—Stephanie Vacchio Just finished an article for the Concordy! SO MUCH WORK OMG!!!!! I HAVEN’T SLEPT IN DAYS!]

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