Re-Tweeting (Not-So) Humble Promoters

Published on April 21, 2011
by Marshall Heyman

Whether we like it or not, and especially on social media, we’re all self-promoters, broadcasting even our quasi-achievements to every friend and follower.

In response, Harris Wittels, a standup comedian and a writer on the NBC series “Parks and Recreation,” created a Twitter feed called Humblebrag, which compiles examples of the offense. For instance, after he won his Academy Award for “Toy Story 3,” the director Lee Unkrich tweeted: “Just in case you think all this has gone to my head, within 36 hours of winning the Oscar, I was back home plunging a clogged toilet.” That ended up on Humblebrag.

There’s a “false humility” to these Tweets, said Mr. Wittels, that “allows the offender to boast his ‘achievements’ without any sense of shame or guilt.”

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