In my ’principles’ I talk a little about not ’crossing the streams’ and as that happened a little this week after my (very) little mention on the Guardian website I thought I’d expand on what that means to me.
On Twitter (and to a lesser extent G+ and Linkedin) I basically reflect the tone of voice and attitude I use in the office.
I *try* not to swear, avoid really controversial topics (some of this is due to being a civil servant as well), talk about work and work related stuff, try and support colleagues and peers, ask for help if I need it. But like in the office I also moan about my commute, talk about the rugby, recommend TV shows to people, tell the occasional story of crazy nights out, countdown to my holidays and on occasion tap people up for favours and sponsorship. Now not everyone is like this in the office I know and not all offices are receptive to people like me (just look at my job history on LinkedIn!) but even as I’ve become more senior I haven’t really changed.
I take the piss a bit out of friends and engage in friendly back and forth. Generally I keep it pretty light though and at least vaguely professional.
Over on Facebook it is quite different. There it is much more of a mix between a night out in the pub and the kind of pretty harsh mickey taking that dominated football changing rooms for the years I played.
I’m more likely to go in to rant mode, actively disagree with people and openly discuss my politics and beliefs over there. The big difference is that on Facebook pretty much all my friends are a more old time definition of the word. The main factor being they’ve known me for years and been (very) drunk with me.
Some people know both sides of me (especially my old Jisc colleagues) but for the most part people in my life are in one camp or the other the majority of the time and that works for me. I’m not saying it would/could/should work for anyone else but my personal experience has been that this has kept me relatively sane these last seven years or so!