Social media is the platform used to express oneself, share thoughts, feelings, keep others up to date. Many people use it to inform others about what they are doing right there and then. This can sometimes mean people issue updates on what they are watching on TV and what is happening in the show they are watching. It may well be something you wanted to watch at a later date and as a result, you get spoilers. This article looks at the biggest media culprits and why it is annoying but an unfortunate fact of modern living.
This is, without doubt, the main convict for two reasons. One, it is all real time meaning it’s quick and simple, and two, it provides you with the hashtag link.
1- By being so current and accessible, it means the people you follow will turn to Twitter before most other platforms, such as Facebook. If you follow friends or people with similar interests to you, which is the point of social networking, you will undoubtedly see them tweeting about the things you want to watch. During summer, my Twitter feed was filled updates about DR Who and how it ended in relation to the “Pond” companions. Needless to say, I was pretty miffed as I hadn’t seen it as I was out of the country, but I knew exactly what happened. However, saying that, I tweeted something whilst watching an episode of a period drama recently. It was only two words, no one in my feed had ever tweeted anything about this show or shown any interest in it, and as far I knew, it wasn’t giving that much away. But my sister text me and told me off! I suppose it depends on who is watching what, how invested they are in detail and what you write.
2 - Trends mean you can see a snapshot of what is popular in a certain place, or worldwide at any given time. If something on TV is trending, the hashtags surrounding that topic can give away a plot line and it appears on your homepage. Doesn’t take a genius to figure it out after that. So even if no one you follow is tweeting it themselves, you still get spoilers from trends.
Spoilers don’t happen so much on here unless it is really big news. A national treasure of a show, a Christmas special, a last ever. If it is a huge story or monumental event then people may turn to Facebook to voice opinions about it and it can be just as annoying and give away just as much detail. It’s not quite as interactive and “live” as Twitter though so you are probably a little safer using Facebook, but not out of the danger zone completely.
Can It Be Avoided?
The only way of avoiding spoilers on social media, is to not use social media. Is this a realistic option for most? Maybe, if you use social media only to talk to friends and can be unplugged for a few hours but not if you use it for business as well. Sometimes, you may even log in and see you missed a show and didn’t realise and by then, you’ve seen all the trends and updates and it’s been ruined. You also can’t put rules in place to say people can’t tweet about topical issues or shows, that is the point of social media, an extension of free speech, opinion and thought. Just be aware that on days when you now you will be the only person not watching it live, avoid as much online activity as you can.
~Image source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisinplymouth~