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my social media life

Louise O'Neill's life online: 'My persona on social media in one word? Inappropriate'

Well-known Irish names tell us about their life on the internet.

TWITTER. FACEBOOK. INSTAGRAM. You’re bound to have your favourite social media site (unless you’re the type who eschews living online entirely).

And, of course, Irish celebs and well-known names have their favourite sites too. Some of them are even known for being a dab hand at the old tweet machine. So we put some questions to them about what they’ve learned from being on social media this year.

Louise O’Neill, award-winning author of Asking For It

What’s your favourite social media site?

Twitter. I’m a writer, I like words, so Twitter appeals to me. I’m particular about the people I follow as well so they tend to either be incredibly smart or incredibly funny.

What page/site do you check every day?

I regularly check The Guardian to feed my leftist, liberal agenda and I love Lainey Gossip. I gave up reading the Daily Mail online about six years ago because I couldn’t bear the language the site used around women’s bodies. Lainey views celebrity gossip through an intelligent, feminist lens.

If you could only follow/like one person on your favourite site, who would you choose?

Jeanne Sutton, the deputy editor of Stellar magazine, is hilarious on Twitter. I want to retweet pretty much everything she tweets.

What have you learned about people through social media?

I don’t necessarily believe that social media has changed people but I do think it has made their motivations more transparent. Some people have always had the capacity for great kindness and a desire for connection and that translates into how they use social media. Others are bullies and enjoy abusing those around them and that’s all reflected in how they interact with social media.

What have you learned about yourself?

I have learned that I have an extremely addictive personality and social media feeds into my desire to be validated. I need to watch that, don’t I?

What’s your favourite post of yours?

I go on political rants every now and again, especially on my Facebook page, and I enjoy them. I’m not so sure how everyone else feels about them though…. I wrote about the UCD 500 story in February and the amount of people reading, liking, and re-sharing that post was unprecedented for me. It did generate a lot of trolling but that seems to be the price many women have to pay for daring to be political on social media.

What’s your favourite post of someone else’s?

Marian Keyes / YouTube

Marian Keyes posts vlogs every Monday where she ruminates about what happened to her over the past week. Like Marian herself, the videos  are smart, interesting, and laugh out loud hilarious.

Have you ever shared something on social media and regretted it?

Yes! I try to either be funny or political on social media but one day I was feeling tired, overwhelmed, and upset and I posted a Facebook update which reflected that. I took a nap and woke up to a dozen texts from friends asking if I was alright and I was so mortified by having a meltdown on Facebook that I immediately deleted the post. Definitely veering into “u ok hun” territory.

What are you most likely to tweet about/share on Facebook/Instagram?

It’s pretty evenly divided between articles on politics that I find interesting, promotional stuff about my work (ie boasting) and random observations about my life. I talk about my parents a lot as well because they’re so entertaining. They love that, as you can imagine.

How would you sum up your persona on social media in one word?


Catch up with the rest of our My Social Media Life questionnaires here

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