| 16.4°C Dublin

What lies beneath Twitter rows and online perfection?

If you had a bone to pick with someone, what would you do? You might ask to meet to try to settle your differences, perhaps.

If you couldn't stomach a face-to-face discussion you could call them to have it out, or even text them.

Then again, that sort of confrontation takes real guts.

What if there was a way to release your anger and let that person know exactly what you think, without really having to engage with them at all?

Well, there is. Simply go on-line and vent your feelings on Twitter or Facebook.

It's so much easier to hide behind your computer rather than look into the whites of someone's eyes.

courage

With a few short taps of the keyboard you can get your rage off your chest and feel much better. No courage required.

Of course, this will ultimately be a pointless exercise because you'll resolve nothing, but if instant gratification is what you're after, then it works a treat.

Celebrities certainly seem keen on this approach.

In the past few days alone, singer Justin Bieber targeted actor Orlando Bloom via Twitter after the pair had a brawl in Ibiza, allegedly over Bloom's former partner, supermodel Miranda Kerr.

Meanwhile in Hollywood, the Kardashian sisters were incensed when an ex-girlfriend of their brother Rob mentioned him negatively in an interview.

They immediately issued a few cryptic statements via Twitter to make their feelings known, sending a very pointed public message in the process, which was probably the point.

After all, when you're famous, your gazillions of loyal followers will take your side, no questions asked.

Celebs know how powerful social media is, which is why they always go to extreme lengths to control and manipulate their image with every message they send.

Take Beyonce and Jay Z, for example.

After the infamous elevator incident, when Beyonce's sister Solange physically attacked Bey's rapper husband, they proceeded to post pictures of the three of them looking closer than ever, in an apparent bid to convince their adoring fans that there really wasn't any trouble in paradise, regardless of CCTV footage to the contrary.

If you think about it, though, most of us are guilty of the same sort of smoke and mirrors.

How many of us ever admit it online when we're having a bad day, for example?

Do we tell the world when we've had a fight with our other half, or when our children are driving us to distraction?

Only the brave among us, in my experience. The rest of us are too busy filling our profiles with cute photos.

But does the picture we paint reflect our true selves?

It's easy to fake a happy-go-lucky persona when you're sitting at your desk, but no one can really tell what lies behind a person's social media facade.

Peaches Geldof springs to mind.

Her Instagram page was a constant stream of pictures of a seemingly idyllic family life, but things were very different behind closed doors.

The truth is, we are all supremely aware that our lives are open to inspection by people we don't even know.

Unless we have our privacy settings on lock-down, then complete strangers can see what we're up to with one click.

Who knows who could be sifting through your family albums?

stalking

Your worst enemy from school could be cyber-stalking you, and you certainly don't want her to know that your life is less than perfect.

That's why we keep posting sickly-sweet selfies with flattering filters, along with the witty one-liners and the inspirational quotes.

At the end of the day, celebrities who engage in Twitter feuding have little to lose. In fact, if you believe that no publicity is bad publicity, they might even have a lucrative new contract to win because of it.

But for the rest of us, washing our dirty laundry in public just isn't worth it.


Privacy