07/05/2013 09:08

Privacy on Social Media? Impossible! Only good behaviour!

05 MAY 2013. Online platforms are an extension of our own personalities so the advice would be to consider anything posted online, whether it be a photo, comment or story, as something you’d be willing to share with your friends, your mom, your parish priest or pastor. Faith, charity and love should be in the forefront of anything we post.

But even before one considers whether or not to make a particular post, you must first determine why your online presence exists. In other words, before considering the tone of your online voice you should establish who your audience is. For some, it’s to promote a business or product, for others it’s a corporate page that highlights their work day-to-day and for others it’s more of a network of friends. Depending on the profile the content will be impacted accordingly.

Expressions of gratitude or appreciation towards others for acts of kindness, praising leadership and sharing professional articles or photos that help tell a compelling story in an interesting way are examples of safe posts, regardless of the intention of the profile. Things to avoid include everything that can be conveyed as belittling, destructive or malicious comments which do not engage intelligent conversation.

You should also consider the impact a personal profile can have when job hunting in the future.

Everything you post online is recorded, this is called a “digital footprint”. Your digital footprint can be traced for many years to come, and it can help or hinder your career. You’d be surprised at how much you can learn about someone before they even walk into a job interview. Employers using material from social networking sites is a common practice. Given current business models and habits, it is exceedingly difficult in practice for individuals to maintain privacy or effective control over the access to and distribution of personal information.

Even material that’s been removed from your profile may still appear in Google. While the mentality that online is forever may be a slight misconception, it isn’t completely farfetched.

Once information is posted to a social networking site, it is very difficult to delete it and assure that it is gone. The simple solution is for individuals to be more careful when deciding what material to attach to their personal online profile by remaining mindful of the potential audience. You need to treat every post that goes out there in cyberspace as the potential for a headline on the front page of a newspaper. (catholicregister.org – 22 Feb 2013)

(cbcpngsi.org – giorgiolicni@yahoo.com)