While doing research writing policies for my former employer, I ran across Intel’s social media policy. To this day the one line that still sticks with me is “if it gives you pause, pause” meaning that if anything makes you stop and think maybe it should not be shared on the web or wise counsel should be sought before doing so. This past week Google + surprised me with a notice when I began to share a friend’s post. The box appeared when I clicked share reminding me that it had originally been intended for a limited audience and asking me if I really wanted to do that.
I loved the reminder. All of us could use a pause button. To this day my post on filtering your tweets is still one of my most read entries. We make mistakes, are impulsive and even at our best often lack judgement. We let things slip that should not be said. We say things to people we quickly regret. Is it so bad to have filters and checkpoints? Google found it worthy enough to include it in their sharing methods.
My grandfather told me once that I should pause before saying anything and roll it around my head first. He said that trying it on first will help to say something more meaningful. As we have increasing ways to broadcast ourselves, pause is more valuable than we may realize.