‘Smoasting’, if I’m honest, is a term I had to look up after being accused of it on the Book of Face recently. It came as no surprise to me that it is a contraction of Social Media Boasting, and joins such terms as ‘egotwistical’ and, ironically, ‘twabbreviating’, on the ever expanding list of social media slang.
Whilst the first accusation was somewhat tongue in cheek, the second was from a friend who is somewhat of a noted Facebook troll. Although I usually try to stick to the adage ‘Don’t Feed the Trolls’, this second comment riled me somewhat and made me question why posting on holiday is such a faux pas, if indeed it actually is.
The accusation was basically that, as well as being boastful by posting from a glamorous holiday location, I was neglecting my partner and not taking full advantage of my time off.
I find this odd. Very odd.
Firstly, let me quickly dismiss the ‘best use of my vacation time’ aspect as pure nonsense. I enjoy Social Media, my partner enjoys her Kindle. These things can co-exist quite comfortably with the states of ‘enjoying our holiday’ and ‘spending time together’. I pity the fool (Thank you Mr T for never being able to utter those words without your voice in my head) that feels they have to spend every single waking hour of their holiday devoted to their partner – it’s not natural!
So on to the main point:
Are we really saying that it is ok to post about what we had for tea, how the journey home from work went, what the weather is doing, and what colour pants we are wearing to a party round the corner a week on Thursday, BUT, it is not ok to post that we are having a great time, in a great place, away from the humdrum of everyday life?
Do we really only want to hear about the mundanities of our friends lives?
Don’t we want to share in all the exciting achievements, happy times and great experiences?
I for one love to see the exciting things my friends are doing, and value those posts just as highly as those which tell me that they’re at Nando’s, or just about to go into a movie, or the launderette.
(Although obviously the most prized posts are those much-shared photos of children who survived cancer and now need your ‘Likes’, or the child being reunited with his US Serviceman dad who needs Facebook to remind him how much of a hero he is).
Back ‘on topic’, the concept of ‘smoasting’, whilst genuine in some cases, is, i believe, far too often attributable to what the Australians call ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’, i.e. wanting to cut down to size those who have any measure of success.
I don’t think it’s as simple as jealousy, but I still think it’s a bit ugly, and a clear example of how, as a modern society, we struggle to applaud the good things in life, but are happy to while away the hours ‘Liking’ each others ‘unremarkability’.
There you go…..I’ve made up my own insulting word.