Social Networks and You: Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Blogs, Flickr, LinkedIn… - Ohlone College
Think Before You Publish Online
College and high school students, as well as adults, use online websites such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Flickr, blogs, LinkedIn, message boards, and other social networking sites and online communities in increasing numbers. These websites can be great opportunities to connect with other students, co-workers, and others to form online communities with shared interests. However, you need to think carefully about what you're revealing about yourself when using these online forums.
- How you conduct yourself online and what you put on MySpace, Facebook, and other websites is public information.
- Realize how difficult it is to remove information from the World Wide Web. Information is captured and stored by search engines, Internet archiving websites, website hosting companies, and emerging technologies. The information you post may never completely be removed.
- Employers and university admissions personnel may use search engines, MySpace, and Facebook as a research tool when reviewing applicants. Would you want a prospective employer, a faculty member, or even someone you want to date to have a negative impression of you based on an impulsive picture, posting, or comment?
- Think before posting something about yourself that may be misconstrued by people reading it. Remember that people have an immediate impression of you based on what they read and see on your site.
- Think carefully about identity theft and cyber-stalking. By sharing your personal information in online communities, you may be giving others access to your personal records. In fact, give some thought as to whether you want to share your birth date with all of your Facebook or MySpace "friends". And never publish your home address online - not even on your online resume!
- Realize you can be sued for making inaccurate or slanderous remarks on your site.
More information about privacy and online communities:
- Discerning Facebook users learn that quality trumps quantity - February 24, 2009, Inside Bay Area
- Vaguely necessary: Think, then post - February 19, 2009, Ohlone College Monitor
- Howto: Protect Your Privacy on Facebook, MySpace, and LinkedIn at mint.com