How not to be a dick on social media

The other night I was spending an average Tuesday evening sorting out my lifemin (aka lying on my front, on my bed, with my rucksack and shoes still on, flicking through Instagram a full hour after arriving home) when NSF came in brandishing her phone in my face in a state of outrage.

What had offended my nearly unoffendable flatmate was a status posted by a girl she knew back at school that went something along the lines of:

‘I’m such an idiot! Thought I ordered cream napkins for the wedding but then it turned out they were white. Doh’ #wedmin #bridebrain*

Who fucking cares?! Screeched NSF ‘seriously why did she feel the need to share that with the world. What a FANNY’

*Please know that this status has been altered for the sake of not landing NSF in the shit. However the level of annoying was the same. So if you’ve been talking about your wedmin on FB, don’t have a go at NSF. THANKS

NSF is not the only one to feel this social media related frustration. Just a quick survey of my nearest and dearest threw up a whole crop of social media pet hates from uniformed political ranting to five of the same bathroom selfies posted in a row. The list went on and on.

It turns out it’s hard not to be a massive dick on social media.

We’re all guilty of it. Show me someone who claims to have never posted a gratuitous selfie and I’ll show you a big fat liar and also be able to show you picture of them posing on a sunbed/doing a fake sad face in the rain/holding up a drink with a weird stilted smile on their face (seriously that one is my twitter profile picture in a nutshell).

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So how do we become less annoying on social media?

After conducting some extensive research (typing ‘how not be annoying on facebook’ into google) I concluded that if you want to make sure your facebook post doesn’t become the subject of ridicule on a whatsapp group called ‘dicks we went to school with’ it should be one of two things:

  • Informative/interesting
  • Funny/entertaining

Simples no?

Essentially if your post is neither of these things you have to ask yourself – why would someone want to read this? Are people interested in what I ate for brunch in my own kitchen? Does the world need another picture of me wearing the gold crown filter on snapchat?

Unfortunately most of the time we (myself included) forget this vital piece of information and post whatever the hell we want. Resulting in extreme frustration from the poor sods who have to read our drivel.

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There’s no foolproof way to ensure that you don’t irritate the hell out of someone on social media, however there are some core things you can avoid doing to ensure that you don’t make people want to throw their phones into the middle of a dual carriage way.

Here are my worst social media offences ranked in no particular order. Enjoy and take heed!

1)‘Bae Overload’

Are you in love? Please kindly sod off.

I jest! I jest!

Well… I semi-jest.

Look by all means be the most soppy in love person ever. Enjoy your in-jokes and have baby names for each other so sickening that even a care bear would vomit in its mouth. That is your prerogative. But please please PLEASE don’t make me live your relationship through the medium of social media.

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I am Steven. We are all Steven.

Here are some actual real life things I have seen on Facebook that I believe to be entirely unacceptable.

Dickhead 1: ‘I love you boo’

Dickhead 2:‘I love you more’

D1:‘Ha! As if – I clearly win this one’

D2:‘you do NOT’

BANG

Sorry that was me blowing my brains out at this conversation that should have clearly been conducted in the privacy of your text messages. Do you own phones? I bet you do and for the sake of argument, if you don’t own a phone do you have a MOUTH?

Good – then go say it to each other instead of littering my feed with this inane nonsense.

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‘Omg fighting through that honeymoon stage with plenty of cranberry juice. Ouch! I blame (inset bf name here) for being so goddamn sexy ;)’

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TTTTTMMMMMMMMMMMMIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII

Seriously why not just write: HEY EVERYONE I’M HAVING SO MUCH MORE SEX THAN YOU. SO MUCH I INJURED MYSELF. YEAH! HOW WAS YOUR EVENING OF WATCHING NETFLIX IN THE BATH*. BET IT WASN’T AS FULL OF SEX AS MY EVENING.

*incidentally it was excellent and my vagina wasn’t on fire so….

Seriously though – we’ve all been in that honeymoon period where you can’t keep your hands off each other. It’s amazing. What’s not amazing is not being able to get the image of your co-worker and her new tinder squeeze doing unspeakable things to each other because she all but posted a video of them doing it on Facebook. GAK.

Keep it to yourselves people.

 

“OMG two tickets to Rome plus my favourite perfume. Best. BF. Ever.”

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OK I get it. You have an amazing boyfriend. I honestly am super pleased for you.

But please bear in mind that some of us may have just had to flee a date with a guy on account of him pinching their nipple uninvited and then had their card declined at the tube station so is now sitting on a bus next to an old lady singing into her hand who smells quite strongly of wee.

Do you think your FB post is going to make this poor soul a) smile/laugh/learn something new to enrich their life or b) do that ugly cry that makes their nose swell like an over ripe grape?

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Before anyone points the ‘bitter old witch’ finger in my direction let me just say, I LOVE love. There is literally nothing better than meeting someone who makes your stomach feel a bit weird and sees you merrily throwing down sixty pounds in Topshop on some weird kind of lace bodysuit that you are definitely not sexy enough to pull off. A bodysuit that your friend may or may not have to help you out of when you get stuck  in it….HYPOTHETICALLY (thanks B I owe you one).

But no matter how much I love being in love there literally are ten THOUSAND things i’d rather do than read about how much you just ‘WUV your boyfriends cutey pootie widdle facey’ and eating poo is one of them.

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I wish I could say that the above example was made up and that I did not read that phrase on the wall of a woman who is a full thirty years old but this is an honest space and quite frankly that kind of behaviour deserves our collective condemnation.

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MOVING ON

2)The undercover brag

Social media is there to update your friends and family about major events in your life. This falls under the ‘informative’ aspect of Facebook posting.

I’m not actually adverse to people announcing their pregnancies, engagements, new jobs etc on Facebook as long as it isn’t done in some incredibly twee horrendous way.

As the old adage goes ‘it’s not what you say it’s the way you say it’

This leads me nicely on to my top pet peeve of social media. THE UNDERCOVER BRAG

This includes but is not limited to humble brags, lie brags and brags disguised as rants.

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Humble brag

‘Of COURSE the one day I don’t wear makeup would be the day I end up having a meeting with David Beckham #sigh’

‘Apparently they now give PHD’s away to just about anyone! God knows how I passed those exams #blessed”

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OK so the problem I have here is not the boast itself. You met David Beckham? Good GOD I hope you licked his delicious face. You got a PHD? Amazing I bet you worked super hard. But come on, be real, don’t pretend you didn’t work hard or that there was anything annoying about meeting David Beckham. Just be excited like the rest of us peasants. We’ll like you more for it.

The brag disguised as a rant

This is my worst. Seriously we must put an end to this douchebaggery.

‘On my walk home from work, I was whistled at twice, honked at twice, and one car almost caused an accident slowing down to stare at me. Sometimes I really hate men.’

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‘trying to find someone to rent your flat whilst packing for a three-month holiday is seriously stressssfulllll. Help a sister out!’

‘Just rolled out of bed, no makeup and some guy is hitting on me at this bar – seriously?! URGH’

‘The world is literally against me today. So my shelf collapses this morning and repair man tells me I’ve got too many shoes on it? I mean really how much can 83 pairs of Louboutins weigh?! Then my uber luxe doesn’t turn up so I have to get my hubby to drive me in the lambo which is soooo cramped! Then go out for dinner at the Ivy and couldn’t sit at my fave table because some famous actor was sitting at it.’ (yeah alright this one is made up but you get my point!!)

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Are you really annoyed about your three-month holiday? Does it really suck that someone hit on you when you weren’t wearing any make up? Are you really furious that you had to go for dinner at the Ivy?

Either you know that your rant is actually a brag in disguise or you’re extremely ungrateful. Both are irritating af. The end.

Lie brags

‘Holed up in my sick bed’ with pic of you looking radiant and tousled and clearly wearing false eyelashes.

Do I need to go into this one? No didn’t think so.

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this is actually me when I’ve just woken up

3)The ‘this is your life’ status

This offender is most often spotted on New Year’s Day every year (but can also be seen popping up on birthdays, leaving jobs, post weddings etc). These are the status that you have to expand three times, often feature a worryingly high wank factor, a severe lack of punctuation and go a little something like this

‘What a YEAR. I can’t even begin to put into words how much life has changed over these past 12 months (k cool don’t then?). So many amazing friends have come into my life, you know who are. From my girls who inspire me every day and make me laugh til I cry – especially when there are rice cakes around amirite LMAO to my family who never falter – thank god for you I am truly blessed. This was the year that I took the plunge to find my own happiness. Changing career, changing location, changing perspective it’s been such an eye opening year and I just have to thank my main man of the moment who has been by my side throughout everything. I’ve grown as a person more than I ever could have imagined, finding myself in the forest of my own humanity and grounding myself in the love of those around me. I directed a short film, started writing a book, took a three-month trip in a beaten up van with nothing but my shoes on my feet and a rucksack on my back. I’ve fallen in love, had my heart broken, made friends for life and lost a few important people along the way, left a job and got the job of my dreams – it’s all been such a whirlwind. But we learn and we grow every step of the way. Here’s to an excellent year ahead.’

I mean….

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Don’t get me wrong, New Years is an emotional time and a lot can change in a year and reflecting back on it can make you super emosh especially when you drank enough wine to tranquillise a small elephant the night before. But guys – keep it to yourselves. Or call your best mate and sob down the phone to her about your enlightenment. Or better still make yourself a nice cup of tea in bed, have a happy reminisce in the privacy of your own head and then go to the pub with your mates. And don’t ever use the word ‘blessed’. It instantly makes you a prick. Trust me.

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Plus if nothing else spare a thought for people like myself who could have summed up last year like this:

‘How do I begin to sum up 2015. Oh I know: Sacked twice, dumped thrice and drunk and poor throughout. Apart from that nothing to report. THANKS’

4)The pointless post

Let me ask you something. Would you ever walk up to a friend or co-worker and announce

‘I just ate some crisps and now I’m off to reply to some more emails’

I mean… hopefully not.

So why on earth would you post something this pointless on facebook?

‘Off to the gym and then home for dinner’

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Thanks so much I was DYING to know what was going to happen after the gym. But now what happens after dinner? DON’T LEAVE ME IN SUSPENSE!!!!

‘is cooking spaghetti. Tomato sauce or creamy?’

Ooh umm…how about some ARSENIC? No? OK maybe tomato then. Creamy sauce is quite fattening.

I’m sorry but what was it than made you go to the effort of digging your phone out of your bag, type that status and post it? I’m serious I would actually like to know.

Remember the rules. Ask yourself: is it funny? Is it interesting? Will it make people happy or will it make them roll their eyes so far into their head that it hurts a bit?’

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5)The cryptic Christabel

‘Isn’t it funny how you can just give and give and get nothing in return #feelingused’

‘Feeling so let down and so sad. Why do I even bother?’

‘Some people just can’t be trusted. Feeling stronger now I know who they are.’

SIGH.

I’m sure I don’t have to tell you why this is annoying. You are essentially airing your dirty laundry in Facebook public. It’s attention seeking and, to be frank, if something has annoyed you that much, just speak to the person in question and let them know. Instead of filtering the message through a whole bunch of people who couldn’t give a rats bum.

But that’s not where the cryptic post ends. Shortly after the original post their comment feed lights up with :

‘u ok hun?’

This now goes one of two ways

The poster will reply ‘I’ll PM you babe’ or ‘I just think it’s funny that…*spills whole story*’.

Both are irritating in equal measure. The latter because it becomes apparent that you were quite happy to share all the details of whatever aggrieved you but wanted to be asked about it first which is just so douchey I can’t even deal with it and the first because however much I don’t care you’ve unfortunately piqued my interest. And now I’m sat in the bath feeling irritated because something juicy is happening and I will never ever know the full details

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6)Emotional Extortion

Oh my god don’t you hate it when you don’t re-post a random image about anti bullying and then you realise that all the bullying in the world is your fault because you didn’t share a Facebook post which means you don’t have a heart and you go to hell?

Nope didn’t think so.

This is the equivalent of when you were 13 and were told that if you didn’t forward a chain email a ghost girl would come and sit on the end of your bed and rip your head off.

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What these people are effectively saying is that by not re-posting this weird piece of propaganda (that quite often doesn’t make sense) you don’t care about the issue at hand.

This kind of slactivism makes people feel like they are doing something for a cause whilst actually doing nothing. Because sharing some weird made up story about how someone drank then drove then died then came back as a ghost on your Facebook wall is about as helpful as a chocolate teapot.

Maybe go raise some money? Or volunteer for a charity. Anything else apart from asking people to share things on their wall.

sadly, 93% of you won't share this, but this spiderman developed severe anal cancer after reading your post. i know most of you won't, but share this if you have a heart! <3 - sadly, 93% of you won't share this, but this spiderman developed severe anal cancer after reading your post. i know most of you won't, but share this if you have a heart! <3  cancer whore

7)Candy crush requests

Kindly sod off forever. The end

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2 Comments

  1. Imogen
    August 11, 2016 / 11:12 am

    I don’t think I can actually express how much I love your blog. The office is so silent I actually have to hold in my laughter otherwise my level of hilarity would sound crazed.

    • M
      Author
      August 11, 2016 / 11:19 am

      Thank you so much!

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