Orangeville, ON (James Doan) Most of us can tell the difference when someone mentions an amount of money earned. They can either be informative or bragging. There is a similar distinction in mentioning something praiseworthy that you’ve done.

When someone talks about a good deed, a donation or a commitment they made, it can come off as a kind of moral preening. The name for this is “virtue signalling.”

Why would onlookers put a negative interpretation to a positive gesture? This has implications for how we convey information in a bio or a blog post.

* The gesture may seem insincere or motivated by a desire for approval.

* Discussing the moral move can seem gratuitous – as unnecessary self-congratulation.

* People may disagree with the moral values involved and not want to make a direct comment.

Keep those dynamics in mind when you post, tweet or blog about your own good deeds.