Think Before You Post… Will the message ever be heeded?
In a paper I wrote recently concerning the future of social networking, I argued that the single most effective solution for its safe use going forwards was the need for education to be heightened. This educative solution focussed on many things, from privacy related issues to piercing the virtual veil – a concept that I coined late last year. My recommendations were quite far-reaching and centred on a broad, multi-pronged approach to raising education and knowledge of the full-blown implications of social networking. On this basis, I guess, sending out reminders to job-seekers that their online actions can have real world implications – particularly for their job prospects – can only be a good thing.
From an email that dropped into my Inbox overnight from Lawladder.co.uk:
Social networking is a relative newcomer in the world of online recruitment and research is still being carried out into its effects.
However, it has already had a massive impact on millions of people and it would be naive to believe that you are immune from its effects.
When companies are researching a potential candidate for a job, running the person's name through Facebook or MySpace is increasingly becoming a routine part of the process.
Think about it. Would you really want your potential employer to see photos of you from a night out, your last holiday or another personal event? Would they present you as the most suitable person for an executive job?
Repeating the same message countless times, though, is of little use. Ultimately, those users who document some of the wackier things they get up to in their spare time on social networking sites really have to stop and take that message on board.