iKeepSafe Blog

this year’s social networking trend: private-it’s the new public

What do teachers, police officers, firefighters and waitresses using Facebook have in common?

They’re getting fired over some all-to-candid comments posted on the site.

Based on New York Times article Privacy Fades in Facebook Era, this week’s iKeepCurrent curriculum highlights the consequences consumers risk when posting unfiltered comments, complaints, photos, and personal information on Facebook.

The iKeepCurrent curriculum—complete with lessons, learning activities, professional development, parent tips, and additional resources—points out that:

1. Consumers are failing to understand the business model of ‘free’ websites. These companies don’t make money by selling advertising; they make it by selling access to you, and information about you to advertisers, marketers and others.

Consumer’s Facebook content is being extracted and sold by Facebook and other companies in near real-time. This point was highlighted in the settlement  between the FTC and Facebook last week when the FTC ruled “Facebook promised users that it would not share their personal information with advertisers. [But] It did.”

2. Nothing you post online is guaranteed private, and what you share can, and likely will, impact you in the future. Between the eight privacy policy changes Facebook has implemented in the last twenty months, leaks, hacks, and careless friends, you have to assume anything you share will be seen by others.

Over the weekend, even Zuckerberg had the opportunity to relearn this lesson as a flaw in Facebook allowed users to access his personal photos.

3. It’s not just what you post on Facebook that may cause damage. Last year, Microsoft conducted a study that asked hiring managers and college recruiters in several countries to identify the types of online content that influenced their decisions to reject a candidate. Their feedback paints a clear picture of how content you post can harm your future, but it also showed that 43% of decision makers who rejected a candidate had done so because of inappropriate comments or text written by friends and relatives.  So it turns out that what your parents told you all along about the importance of choosing your friends wisely is even more true in the internet age!

Read the full curriculum and sign up for iKeepCurrent today.

Categories: Social Networking

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