Carving an Identity on Social Media

Social media encourages its users to emulate others, to resend others’ postings, to “like” others and, generally, to exhibit agreement or approval over a wide social network. Yielding to those opportunities leads to excessive homogeneity and, conceivably, loss of individuality. Real life does not generally provide similar opportunities. The question is: Are we losing anything by tending toward sameness or are we gaining something of value by conforming and, possibly, blending into an undifferentiated mass?

HOO-R-U provides the first step in the process of carving out an identity among other identities; it measures the key factors making up your online identity and helps you decide if you are pleased with your current social media identity; if you are not completely satisfied, it can help you draw your attention to the missing or misplaced facets of your individuality.

HOO-R-U Profile represents your own assessment of who you are by forcing you to envision what others think of you along significant dimensions. It does not reveal what others think of you; it lets you look in the social media mirror and simply asks you: What do you see? That is how it should be—after all, you are the best judge of who you are, and you are also the only one who is entitled to decide if you are happy with the identity you are projecting.

Social media—as opposed to real-life social environments—is a closed set that provides extraordinary opportunities to express yourself across a very large number of people. That is one of the reasons for its overwhelming attractiveness, but therein lies one of its great dangers. Establishing and managing your online identity is devilishly difficult, mostly because most of us do not think about all the implications of what we do, what we say and what we disclose when basking in the flickering light of our laptop or smartphone.

Consciously carving out an online identity among other identities does not come naturally to most social media users. Yet, knowing our unique identity, managing it and preserving the desired configuration of that identity ought to be a major concern of every social media user.