Oh the power of the internet… because of social media I have met and interacted with so many awesome, smart people. And I have made SO many new friends. One of those awesome friends is the fab Chris Curtis. I have had the pleasure of being a guest on Chris's radio show, Tech Tuesday, a couple of times and we always have a great time. The Chris and Kris show rocks. LOL!
Anyway, this lady knows her stuff when it comes to maintaining a business-like etiquette on the web. And we are always on the same wavelength when it comes to this stuff. I could have written the exact same post. Read the below and soak up the advice. 🙂
Behind our computers we are anybody we want to be. A new confidence comes over us and there's nothing in our way to connect to the massive universe at our fingertips. We are super-people. We are opinionated. We are invincible! For some, that influx of confidence hinders the balance between Id and Ego, and often manifests as Tweets, Facebook posts and blog topics that could prove embarrassing or fan flames later on.
No worries. You can always turn over a new leaf. Here are some tips for getting your web spaces in order:
Review & Delete
Remove anything with profanity, and any unsavory of “iffy” connotations. Now is not the time to show off your off the cuff perspectives, or your witty one-liners. They could be deemed offensive and cost you an interview or worse, the job. Start thinking like the people who read what you've posted. Just because you post it, doesn't mean people get what you were trying to say. Do they understand the tone and perspective that you meant when you wrote it? If you're not sure, or if the answer is no, take it down.
Google Yourself. Bing Yourself. Yahoo! You.
What you don't know, may hurt you. Comments on blogs, Twitter and other online places may show up in search engines, if someone searches your name or a particular keyword. If you can't remove it, at least you will be aware of it and be able to address it, should it come up in a conversation (or job interview). Everybody has a misunderstood post at least once in a lifetime. Just know that telling someone you had a “brain fart”, won't get you off the hook. Have something positive to say and be willing to acknowledge your mistake openly and honestly.
Tell Your Friends and Family to Behave
Sometimes it's not your own doing that causes problems in the internet realm. It could be a post or comment from another person. Let everyone know you're cleaning up your act, and ask them to play nice or risk being deleted. The last thing you need is to do hours of work cleaning up your web spaces, only to have your 5th cousin post a picture of you sitting on the toilet at last years family reunion. Be firm, and be direct. This is no laughing matter. People will respect your wishes when they see you've changed your tune. Be prepared to have a few casualties along the way. You may have to remove offenders.
Limit Your Topics
Most of the time, you can talk about anything you want. Just be aware that certain topics automatically draw blood or spark fires online. Topics that surround gender, race, politics, sex, sexual orientation, and religion often turn ugly. If you're going to brave it anyway, at least keep your perspectives neutral so as not to cause undue attention to yourself. Business owners and those in job hunting mode, stay clear of these topics completely!
Remember, the web is a fun place to be, however, “With great power, comes great responsibility.”
Chris Curtis is a National Internet Business Strategist and Web Marketing Consultant helping business owners and entrepreneurs build, manage and grow online businesses. A veteran in the web world, Chris teaches you how how to get “beyond the point of pretty pages” to the point of profitability. For more information, visit www.chris-curtis.com.