Facetid Identity, Faceted Lives: Social and Technical Issues in Being Yourself Online

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This research explores key issues people experience managing personal boundaries within and across social technologies. We look in particular at email and online social networks. We offer a …

This research explores key issues people experience managing personal boundaries within and across social technologies. We look in particular at email and online social networks. We offer a theoretical framework for understanding the errors in assumptions about the singularity of identity that are currently inscribed into the sharing models of social technology systems. Through a questionnaire study we examine how people facet their identities and their lives, and how these facets are expressed through use of technology. We found for more mature users family was an extremely important context for sharing online, and that email was still a preferred form of communication for private sharing across facets of life. Single, working men had the highest level of incompatible facets, and a higher level of facet incompatibility was correlated with increased worry about sharing in the context of social networks.

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  • Lets begin with the problem. We observed that users increasingly connect…