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At Shareaholic, we’re clearly all about sharing. We encourage you to make your content more shareable, give you details on how to add sharing plugins to your posts. But you all know how it is. There’s some people with no social media etiquette at all. They send some Tweets that just make you think, “This is why we can’t have nice things!!”

I asked the Shareaholic Facebook fans along with my Twitter followers and Faceook friends for their biggest social media etiquette pet peeves when it comes to sharing. Here were some of the great suggestions:

1. Roundups of “Top 10 Corporate Social Media Fails”

social media etiquette

This is a personal pet peeve of mine as a marketer. I think we’ve all heard of the most famous corporate social media fails: Red Cross and #gettinslizzard, McDonald’s and their hashtags etc etc. I’ve seen so many roundups of these. While I think it’s valuable to learn and think about how we can improve, I also believe there is a fine line between constructive analysis and finger-pointing. I feel like there’s far too much of the latter out there in the blogosphere. Analysis of one failed campaign with specific takeaways is one thing. A quick roundup or slideshow of the top 10 fails is too brief to be truly informative. The intent in these situations to embarrass, not to educate.

At the risk of sounding overly forgiving: Nobody is perfect. So the next time you think about sharing one of these link-bait roundups, consider if this is really valuable analysis that teaches marketers how to avoid a failure in their own campaign, or if it’s just finger pointing and name-calling.

2. Food Tweets and Instagrams

I’m so guilty of this. I definitely recently Tweeted this Instagram photo of my favorite salad from my favorite bar.

When I asked my followers what they hate seeing shared on social media, food Tweets was a popular one. It’s just so tempting with Instagram to share that deliciousness you’re about to nom on, and depending how into food and photography you are, this could be a love/hate one. What do you think?

3. Play-by-Play Sports Tweets

Here’s another one that’s completely subjective: If it’s your team playing, you may want to participate in the hashtag and follow along with other fans Tweeting about the game. If it’s not your team or you just don’t care about sports, watching that stream of updates during a game is your worst nightmare. Information overload!

For Twitter, you can circumvent this by creating a filter for certain hashtags or words in Tweetdeck. Find this option under File/Preferences.

For Facebook, you can’t filter the newsfeed for mentions of sports teams for over-sharers, but you can unsubscribe from their all-too-frequent updates. Hover in the top right hand corner of your friend’s update to see the unsubscribe options revealed.

4. Oversharing

Facebook isn’t your diary. While it’s certainly tempting to vent every negative thought that comes to mind or type out your innermost ponderings as you work through them, it can be annoying to others.

5. FourSquare Checkins and Mayorships

Posting checkins can go either way. When it’s obvious that the person auto-posted, it seems irrelevant. On the other hand, sharing where you like to go is a conversation starter. Plus, the small business owners probably love this for the additional promotion they get when you push notifications to Facebook and Twitter, and it’s a great way to support the local establishments you love the most. So think: Is there a way you can add relevance with the update you’re sending – an additional thought or photo? Maybe a recommendation of something to do wherever you are checking in? Perhaps a quick 140-character review of the place?

6. RSS Feeds

So to re-iterate on the FourSquare checkins point – are you auto-posting that FourSquare checkin to Twitter, which is auto-posting to Linkedin and to Facebook – along with your company blog, Tumblr and Instagrams? You have an RSS autofeed overload, my dear, and you may want to consider how much you are sharing.

7. Relationship Problems

People often recommend separating updates into professional and personal accounts, and I’m sure this is a reason why. Although talking about relationships and relationship problems can certainly be seen as a faux-pas, I think it’s nice to see people’s human side once in a while – especially if it’s a funny story or article to share.

I think it’s all about balance between the informative and the information overload, between making the mistake of sharing something unprofessional or taking the opportunity to share the fun side of yourself that opens up a conversation with a whole new crowd.

What do you hate to see shared on social media? Let us know in the comments.

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  • amberdegrace

    As a freelance writer and blogger who focuses much of what I do on food and cooking, I’m going to disagree with #2. I hear it sometimes too, the complaining about food posts, but for me it’s part of my job so I won’t be stopping anytime soon.

  • Janet, Janet, Janet…You scold us for tweeting food pictures, do a mea culpa for perpetrating the same, only to commit the crime yet again by recycling a foodie shot??!! Tsk, tsk. Credibility, where art thou? ;) Joher at http://www.coleManOnFire.com 

  • Or “Roundups taken from Facebook and Twitter Surveys”, that’s a good one.

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