If you are the person behind building your brand online, what you say can have a huge impact. Your reputation can literally change in 140 characters or less!
Every day someone says the wrong thing and literally that person gets unfollowed, or even harassed. Perez Hilton was a prime example when he bashed Michael Jackson after the legendary pop star passed away. Tila Tequila bashed Perez Hilton, Kanye West bashed… Twitter, and of course, there have been other kerfuffles from celebrities, non-celebrities, and even members of the blogging community.
You of course, have a right to share your opinion, but it comes down to: should you? Regardless, of the subject and no matter how many or how few people hear you, your reputation is important. It is not censoring if you keep your mouth closed on certain things – it is common sense.
There are going to be people out there that are in for the shock value, but if you do not want the backlash, have second thoughts over what you say. On Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks, no matter how old you are, you are speaking to people of all ages.
The worst case scenario is when your social network account has been reported and flagged because of what you say. Unfortunately, Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks have a moderation team that is not sympathetic to sharing controversial opinions, especially if it may end up pretty chaotic. So… in worst case scenario, you could lose your social network account or the conversation that is offensive removed. It seems unfair, but most websites, even blogs have a responsibility to make sure things do not get out of hand.
So, think about it:
- Will it emotionally harm someone?
- Would you regret saying it later?
- Is the topic highly controversial and already having trouble on other websites?
- Are you willing to take full responsibility of the backlash?
Have you had an incident online where it was very controversial and caused your social network account to be suspended, flagged, or even terminated?