Many people strive to increase their privacy on Facebook by hiding their photos, limiting who can see their profile and accepting few friend requests. However, Facebook is also a tool used (and abused) by chronic over-sharers, and as a recent study by three British universities found, these users might be doing significant damage to their personal relationships.
“It’s worth remembering that the information we post to our ‘friends’ on Facebook, actually gets viewed by lots of different categories of people: partners; friends; family; colleagues and acquaintances,” said Dr. David Houghton, the lead author of the report. “And each group seems to take a different view of the information shared… Our research found that those who frequently post photographs on Facebook risk damaging real-life relationships. This is because people, other than very close friends and relatives, don’t seem to relate well to those who constantly share photos of themselves.”
The research done in the study, called “Tagger’s Delight,” seems to confirm what many Facebook users already knew: Facebook over-sharers can be extremely annoying. However, the research was able to pinpoint the exact personal cost of users’ over-sharing actions, something that had never been established concretely. While Facebook’s increased photo-sharing ability makes spilling every detail of your life onto the site easier than ever, sometimes it’s best to show restraint and simply keep your personal information private.