Eugene Hwang, a 41-year-old marketing executive from Westwood, uses a smart-phone application to record the distance he runs and calories burned, and then to share the information on his Facebook page with friends and other runners.
He lost 20 pounds over the summer, a feat he said he accomplished only because his online friends were there to hold him accountable. But not everyone was supportive; Hwang said he occasionally saw comments accusing him of being a showoff.
“I know some people get upset,” he said. “I just call them haters.”
The expanding online world of social-network sites, blogs and smart-phone apps has allowed people to share the most intimate details about themselves. Information that was traditionally whispered among close friends — struggles with weight loss, misadventures in dating, psychic anguish and the like — is now relayed as news flashes on Twitter and Facebook.