Someone once said that in the era of social media (and in any other era for that matter) it is not enough to be good at something. You have to shout about it from the rafters. 

However, not everybody feels comfortable putting themselves out there and possibly exposing their expertise to harsh criticism. And yet in this social media dominated age having an online presence doesn’t seem to be an option. It’s more of a must.

Is there any way of making the first step into the social media realm less painful? How to start a blog and save yourself from feeling presumptuous? Check out: Shy of Social Media Spotlight? Get Over It. 



  • rogue – unprincipled person
  • philander – (of a man) readily or frequently enter into casual sexual relationships with women
  • throwback – a reversion to an earlier ancestral characteristic
  • opprobrium – harsh criticism or censure
  • robust – strong and healthy; vigorous
  • bloviator – one who discourses at length in a pompous or boastful manner
  • hit/strike a chord with sb – affect or stir someone’s emotions
  • abhor – regard with disgust and hatred 
  • dissect – analyze (something) in minute detail
  • presumptuous – failing to observe the limits of what is permitted or appropriate
  • paltry wisps – small thin pieces of something


Think about it

Based on the text answer the following questions. Leave your answers in the comments below!

  • What was the executive mentioned in paragraph one worried about?
  • What does the executive mentioned in paragraph two mean by saying: “I’m not really comfortable putting myself out there.”
  • In what sense was AOL a “walled garden” in the mid-90s?
  • What are some advantages for a beginning blogger of NOT being followed by many people?
  • If you don’t feel comfortable in the role of an expert on a blog how else can you establish yourself as a credible professional?


Practice makes perfect

Use the verbs in brackets in the most appropriate tenses.

 I recently ______ (teach) a workshop on crisis communication at a top business school. Afterward, a mid-career executive ______ (come up) to me with a question. But it ______ (not be) about how to handle rogue employees, or industrial accidents, or philandering CEOs. Instead, it ______ (concern) a far more personal sense of crisis: her overwhelming fear of public criticism if she ______ (become) active on social media. She ______ (be) an accomplished professional; she ______ (run) an environmental consultancy for the past six years. And she ______ (know) some kind of web presence was necessary for her credibility. “You have to have something up there for people to find you,” she ______ (say). “Having nothing would be bad.” But her web presence was spartan, a throwback to the “Web 1.0” days of static, brochure-like sites. Anything else, she feared, might risk opprobrium.


Fill in the blank spaces with the correct forms of the words in capital letters.


It’s ironic, of course. We can all cite examples of social media bloviators we wish would shut up. And meanwhile, you have ______ KNOW professionals who are too afraid to share their ______ SIGHT with the world. It’s true that the World Wide Web of the mid-90s was a Wild West; there’s a reason AOL thrived for years as a “walled garden” that protected people from idiots spewing ad hominem insults in chatrooms. But with the decline of ______ ANONYMOUS on the Web (hat tip to Mark Zuckerberg, who ______ FAME declared that “Having two identities for yourself is an example of lack of ______ INTEGRAL”) and the rise of using the Internet for professional purposes, it’s much less likely that anyone — ______ SPECIAL someone writing intelligently about their profession, rather than a hot button political issue — will get “flamed” these days.


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