Be Careful What You Post on Blogs and Social Media Sites

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January 26th, 2011

The use of social media and blogs is prevalent among college students, and these days you must be careful what you post online. Not only are debt collectors using information they find on social networks to try to ascertain a debt-dodger’s whereabouts, but college admissions officers have even taken applicants’ social networks into consideration when deciding whether or not to admit them.

When you’re in college, it’s tempting to blog and use social networks to rant about your college frustrations, but you should be cautious. This venting can all too easily get back to your professor or instructor. Even if you up your privacy settings on Facebook to keep your prof out of your social network, a friend from class could easily forward your frustrations to your teacher to spite you or get you in trouble.

Or let’s say you decide to play hooky from a class and you come up with an elaborate excuse for your instructor for why you had to miss class, like the death of a family member or a phony illness. If you post pictures on your blog or social network of your adventures or write a post about all the fun you had on your day off, it’s possible it could get back to your professor and you could end up in hot water.

According to USA Today, college students, high school students and even middle school students have been expelled, suspended, turned down for jobs, fired, kicked off of athletic teams and sometimes even arrested for the content they post online. Students have been arrested for posting incriminating pictures of their drug use or posing while holding a firearm, and denied jobs and internships because their profile photo depicts them scantily clad or drinking from a beer bong. Whether it’s compromising photos from a weekend party or status updates and blogs hurling insults against a professor or coach, your postings can land you in serious trouble.

The bottom line? Once you post something online, it’s out there on the Web forever. Be careful that the things you post don’t put you in the spotlight in a bad way during your college years.

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