As Annika points out in her post, the basic rule of thumb for uploading anything onto the web is: if you have a problem with the whole world seeing it, don’t do it. Because once it’s on the Internet, it stays there. Forever.
I saw this for myself with Facebook. About 2 years ago I decided to discontinue my Facebook account because I wasn’t really using it. I deactivated it and – I thought – deleted all the pictures I had uploaded there. About 18 months ago I decided to return to Facebook and to my astonishment, Facebook found all my old deleted photos and it hadn’t got rid of any of my status updates either. It was all there.
So considering that for example employers are doing searches on LinkedIn and Facebook about potential employees, you might want to think again before you upload that hilarious picture of when you fell off a chair, drink in hand.
But at the end of the day, humans are very social animals and we want to share. We want to know how our friends are doing and we want to let them know how we are. Many, myself included, have accumulated quite a number of Facebook Friends. Clearly, though, my 100+ Friends are not all my BFFs.
So let’s say your boss is your Friend on Facebook, or some of your work acquaintances. Do you want to share the same things with them as with your sister and best friends?
Here’s where Facebook helps you out. Nowadays you can organize all your Friends onto different lists and determine which lists see which status updates or photo albums.
For instance, a friend recently broke up with her boyfriend and has now organized all her boyfriend’s friends onto an “Ex” list. The people on that list, she feels, don’t need to read details about her new boyfriend. Another friend has made a “Family” list and shares certain photo albums only with them.
Me? I like to keep it simple. I only share things online which I can be sure won’t come back to haunt me. For the juicier stuff I go old school: I give my friends a call or meet them IRL. 🙂
Our in-house social media guru Jason has been tweeting about privacy on Twitter and Facebook extensively. If you want to be kept up-to-date on the topic, I recommend our Twitter and Facebook feeds for the latest on what’s being said about this issue.
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