Overuse of Social Networking?

The editors of The New York Times, ask, "Is there such a thing as overuse of social networking tools? In the online world, is the notion of a public/private divide simply not applicable?"

Throughout the post, the editors consulted the following experts in the online social media field:

Clay Shirky, Interactive Telecommunications Program at N.Y.U
Timothy B. Lee, Princeton’s Center for Information Technology Policy
Susan Mernit, former AOL vice president and blogger
David E. Meyer psychology professor, University of Michigan

Clay Shirky, "Society has always carved out space for young people to misbehave. We used to do this by making a distinction between behavior we couldn't’t see, because it was hidden, and behavior we could see, because it was public. That bargain is now broken, because social life increasingly includes a gray area that is publicly available, but not for public consumption."

Timothy B. Lee, "Many users find these tools inconvenient or hard to use, and some are careless about posting information that could become embarrassing in the future. But we shouldn't be too impatient; the offline world has a centuries-long head start in developing privacy-preserving tools and social conventions."

Susan Merit, "One of the truths of social media that is hard to face is that micro information can be both embarrassing and boring, leading to a terminal case of twittering too hard and to the need to get over yourself. Wondering if you’ve crossed the line? If you have to ask, you probably have."

David E. Meyer, "Excessive multitasking can lead to chronic stress, with potential damage to the cardiovascular, immune, and nervous systems. Fatal accidents are more likely too. Nobody, not even the inveterate multitasker, is completely invulnerable to these effects. "

After reviewing the comments of these experts, what do you think warrants an overuse of social networking?


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