Social media use

on captainepoch's log

You might read this in some social media profiles:

  • Opinions are my own.
  • Opinions are my own and do not represent my employer’s.
  • The opinions expressed here do not reflect my employer’s.

And similar lines on those profiles.

It truly baffles me that people have to specify that in their personal social media profiles. A profile that their employers did not pay them to have. It is not your corporate profile, it is not an account that your employer requires you to have. It is your account.

When you start working for someone you have to separate what it is your personal and professional profile. Your social media accounts do not belong to your employer, unless your employer requires you to make one (for some reason), in which case that profile should be dedicated to what employer requires you to do.

If you are a public figure, let’s say a software developer, you might post something from your employer from time to time, because you wrote something on its blog, or because you find something interesting your employer did, but that does not mean you express any alignment whatsoever with your employer. Same goes for a journalist, for example, or a writer, or even CEOs.

If you write a blog (like what you are reading now) and you want to use your personal account to promote it, whether it is a post with some (controversial) opinion, a technical post or a story, again, it is your blog, your personal social media account, therefore it should not matter what you wrote, or who or what you are criticizing.

Doing a repost (or retweet or whatever terminology is used in your preferred social media network) is not endorsement of anything. It just means you found something interesting and you wanted to share it inside the social network itself to your followers. You do not need to mention in your description/biography.

Your personal opinions about any topic are exactly that: your personal opinions. Companies should not be able to force you to have an opinion you must agree with, no matter what. Because nobody agree with 100% of the opinions expressed by any company (nor should you).

If your employer wants to force you to agree upon its opinions, somehow, make a separate, corporate-focused account to express those. Although, if you are forced to agree upon those opinions, you might want to rethink if that is good for you.

Your job and your personal life are two separate things. You should use your personal profile as exactly that, your personal space, and nothing else.