I have to say that I was excited when the UK’s first youth police and crime commissioner was appointed. And therefore, I was also disappointed when it was revealed that she has now resigned, following the recent furore around her Tweeting history.
Although I believe that everyone deserves a second chance and that she shouldn’t be crucified for her past actions, I also think that this should serve as a lesson to all of us.
Twitter, which recently celebrated its 7th birthday, now has over 10 million users in the UK, a stat which I find quite extraordinary. The majority of feeds are open to the public, which leaves a wealth of information there for anyone to dig up.
But, do we think about this when we Tweet regularly? Most people have something to say on a daily basis, myself included, but do we ever consider who is reading our thoughts?
It is safe to say that it is unlikely to be just our committed followers; after all we don’t have to actively follow someone to see their Tweets if their profile is open.
I look at certain celebrity’s feeds every day, but you don’t think I would openly admit this by following them do you? Nobody needs to know about my girl crush on Kelly Brook. Or the fact that I am still fascinated by Lee Brennan from 911 (yes really).
But, returning to my initial subject; just when did we become so judgmental? The Tweets from Paris Brown were not recent, and we all make mistakes. The fact that she was appointed to the post says a lot about her, and why should that be taken away because of some silly and reckless teenage Tweets?
I am by no means justifying her past behaviour or saying what she said is acceptable, because it isn’t. But we all make mistakes and we should all be given the opportunity to prove ourselves.
The key point to all of this though is that we should never forget the fact that, by creating a Twitter profile for ourselves, we are also creating a public brand. From a corporate perspective, we advise clients on how to protect their brand on a daily basis, so why would we not do the same for ourselves?
It doesn’t make any sense really. So next time you go to Tweet, think about what it is you are saying and what effect it might have on you either now or in the future. And if you follow me on Twitter, you will be pleased to know that I will do the same. No more bad jokes, fascinating facts, or incredibly bad pop music insight*.
* Please note that this last sentence is an active lie.