Nov. 21, 2018

Are We Oversharing On Social Media?

We all know parents who chronicle their baby’s every bathtime, give their toddlers hashtags, and air their tween’s hurt feelings on social media. We don’t do *that*…but what are the long-term ramifications for our kids’ privacy when we press SHARE?

The word “oversharenting” has been coined to describe those among us who chronicle our baby’s every bowel movement, ascribe hashtags to our preschoolers, and relitigate our tween’s hurt feelings, all of it for universal consumption on social media.

For sure, we all know oversharenting when we see it— but most of us are equally certain that it’s really something other parents do. And we’re also fans of all the great, useful, meaningful ways social media keeps us connected.

But are we considering the long-term ramifications for our kids’ privacy every time we press SHARE?

In this episode we discuss:

the “disclosure management work” of making sure loved ones are kept up-to-date on social media- and why it’s usually Mom’s job

why we’re not as good at guarding others’ privacy when we post as we are at guarding our own

why we’re motivated to share (and overshare)

the “clean slate” of our own childhoods versus the extremely well-documented stories we’ve been writing for our kids

the best practices we have in place for our own social media use

whether the privacy concerns are real, or just another place to overthink

Here’s links to research and other writing on the topic we discuss in this episode:


Sarah Zhang for The Atlantic: Facebook Groups as Therapy

Frank Landman for readwrite: Are You Oversharing on Social Media?

Lisa Heffernan of Grown and Flown: Oversharing: Why Do We Do It And How Do We Stop?

Tawfiq Ammari et al, University of Michigan: Managing Children’s Online Identities: How Parents Decide what to Disclose about their Children Online

Liza Lazard et al for The Conversation: Sharenting: why mothers post about their children on social media

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