Social media

Get to know yourself in social media

Numbers play an important role in todays world. Mainly to count the number of retweets, facebook likes or instagram followers. Our lives are centred around social media. However, the content posted by a lot of people on social networking site is vituperative, crass and critical. It only channels anger and gives way to insult. The article introduces an app call ThinkUp which tracks your social media account and gives vital information about it. ThinkUp shows the image that one is portraying on a social media site which comes across as harsh reality. Through personal experience, the author, Farhad Manjoo, says that the application helped him retweet and give importance to more insightful words. In modern times, where facebook helps employers with background checks, the need for this application is further amplified. 

Read an excerpt of the article written by Farhad Manjoo:   

Anil Dash, a longtime tech entrepreneur and blogger, was recently studying a list of the top words he had used on Twitter over the course of a month during the fall. Mr. Dash has half a million followers on Twitter, and like a lot of people in tech and media circles, he uses the social network to chat with colleagues, to pontificate about technology, politics and pop culture, and to participate in a lot of in jokes. Over the years Mr. Dash has also found himself in the middle of some of the most loaded controversies that have roiled that network. But when he looked at the list of his most-used words for that month, he decided that many of his tweets were too combative, and he wasn’t proud of that. ‘‘A lot of it was me dealing with ‘gamergate’ folks,’’ he said in an interview, referring to the past year’s antifeminist activist campaign by some video game enthusiasts. ‘‘I’m like: ‘God, I’m wasting my life. Why am I spending time on this? There are so many other things I could be doing.’’’ But, he added: ‘‘Seeing it was a revelation. I decided I’m just not doing it anymore. I immediately blocked five people, and it made my life better in 10 seconds.’’ Mr. Dash has been thinking about his behavior on social media for a while. Together with Gina Trapani, the former editor of the blog Lifehacker, he is a co-founder of ThinkUp, a year-old subscription service that analyzes how people comport themselves on Twitter and Facebook, with the goal of helping them become more thoughtful, less reflexive, more empathetic and more professional — over all, better behaved. In addition to a list of people’s most-used words and other straightforward stats like follower counts, ThinkUp shows subscribers more unusual information such as how often they thank and congratulate people, how frequently they swear, whose voices they tend to amplify and which posts get the biggest reaction and from whom. Some of this may sound trivial. But after using ThinkUp for about six months, I’ve found it to be an indispensable guide to how I navigate social networks. Every morning the service delivers an email packed with information, and in its weighty thoroughness, it reminds you that what you do on Twitter and Facebook can change your life, and other people’s lives, in important, sometimes unforeseen ways. ThinkUp is something like Elf on the Shelf for digitally addled adults — a constant reminder that someone is watching you, and that you’re being judged. That is the point. ‘‘The goal is to make you act like less of a jerk online,’’ Ms. Trapani said. ‘‘The big goal is to create mindfulness and awareness, and also behavioral change.’’ She pointed out that people often tweet and update without any perspective about themselves. That’s because Facebook and Twitter, as others have observed, have a way of infecting our brains. ...Read more