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I know some of you will think this sounds funny coming from me, but here it goes. I know we are a close knit group and love to say and do things (in fun), but others don't always see it the same way. I have made post in fun that have been edited(rightfully so,I want to add) and I know others have experienced the same thing. I want people to realize what we say and do is judged by others. I'm sure some of them are not even members here, but could be our customers,business contacts, or our neighbors. I just want to caution all that we are always under a microscope.What we say and do is always being dissected from someone. I recently heard a story from my nephew. He recently graduated with a Bachelors Degree in business with honors. He went for a job interview and the employer had questions that he did not expect. These questions were about things revealed on his myspace page. The employer had researched the applicants and was using the information as art of the interview process. I'm sure this is not the first employer to do this, but it opened my eyes to the scope of the Internet. I wanted to share this to let others know that what we do in fun, can come back to haunt us in the future. I'm not judging anyone, I just thought you would want to know. ..... JB
 

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it's sort of like the whole issue of employers rating you on your credit rating..... i was totally able to perform a job but after the "background" check i wasnt called....hmmmm...... sort of weird too.... since the head of the dept. wanted me to work...

i think it's stupid..... if a company rated you on your 'personal' life i think that could be grounds for a lawsuit....i dont know.......

b
 

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I don't know about grounds for a lawsuit but I definently don't agree with it. I totally get where you are coming from COEDS, and I think it's horrible employers would even go to the measure, because people keep their private life from their business life for a reason.

Personally, I wouldn't work for a company that asked me questions like this. I have nothing to hide, but I'm not going to work for someone who is snooping around my life all the time to see what I'm getting into. Again, it's my personal life.
 

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He went for a job interview and the employer had questions that he did not expect. These questions were about things revealed on his myspace page. The employer had researched the applicants and was using the information as art of the interview process. I'm sure this is not the first employer to do this, but it opened my eyes to the scope of the Internet.
I've read about this before, but I didn't know it actually "happened". Here's a couple of articles on it:

Christine Hassler: Net-Etiquette For Job Seekers

Here's some interesting stats from a survey:
Vault's Social Networking Web Site Survey 2008

44% of employers surveyed looked up potential employees on social networking sites and that 82% of those employers would think twice about hiring candidates with something perceived as negative in their on-line profiles. Furthermore, 39% of employers have searched the on-line profiles of current employees.
It's not just employers, but potential customers as well that you have to think about.
 

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Its also commonly used, to ask psychological questions in interviews to see what type of personality a person has. I worked for a large investment firm and was trained on how to do psychological interviews. The interviews had little to do with the qualifications of the applicant, but more so of their personal traits. It is believed by companies that understand ones personality, gives a better understanding of whether they are a right fit for a company. They also looked very closely into the personal lives of the applicants, with what ever information they could find on them. Now that myspace, facebook and so many other social networks are available it makes it easy for companies to research someones personality by what they post when they think no one is looking.

Its really scary to think that everything you do can be seen in one way or another. Its like the google maps, where I can put in my address and see my house and my car, that kind of freaks me out a little haha. People can see what you do, where you live and so much more. I agree its best to really consider what you are putting out there, knowing that anything you do, has the chance of being seen by millions.
 

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Its really scary to think that everything you do can be seen in one way or another. Its like the google maps, where I can put in my address and see my house and my car, that kind of freaks me out a little haha. People can see what you do, where you live and so much more. I agree its best to really consider what you are putting out there, knowing that anything you do, has the chance of being seen by millions.
Speaking of which, I did a world tour on Google maps the other day. I saw the Eiffel Tower, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Wall of China, parts of Germany and Antartica, and the beaches of Tahiti. It's amazing how far technology has come.
 

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I find it an interesting subject. I feel like somewhere we have a disconect with personal actions. I'm not perfect, I've said stupid stuff. I've done really stupid things. But people sometimes feel like they can act one way in one place and one way in another. The internet is an obvious perfect example of this. It's like the old saying "When you tell the truth, you never have to remember what you said". I'm not saying that someone should be held responsible for their MySpace page, but it is obvious that what was on there came back to bite him in the butt.
 

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weird. I just looked up the Eiffel tower again. You can stand on "Avenues de New York" and check out the street view, and see the tower from the other side. Crazy!

Unfortunently, there's no street view of the pyramids of Giza. :(
 

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I totally agree that if you act in an honorable manner you dont have to worry about what someone might find. I can pretty much guarentee there is nothing I have done that I am not proud of online. It is a bit wierd though to see my house :)

In fact if you have acted in a manner that is good, you really dont have to worry about what someone finds, and can actually be proud of the content, that shows you in a good light. So I guess it can also be a good thing too.
 

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This is such a good topic. I caution people about this all the time. I write for a living and I write for our companies and my name is everywhere. It is also associated with our companies, so I have to be careful what I do online and what I say. Like it or not anything you do or say on the Internet can be found again, and it might be years later. You have to be aware of that and act accordingly.

It's all very well to say you can have a professional life and a personal life, but that's not really the reality anymore. Screennames aren't necessarily protection either. I know of a couple of bloggers who wrote anonymous blogs and they were still found out and fired.

The best protection, as others have said, is to do nothing of which you might have to be ashamed. Or, alternatively, know the risks and be ready to accept the consequences if the worst happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Kristine,very well said and I have been lectured on this subject by my wife many times. My wife works in the I T field and does a lot of cyber stalking for her job.She is constantly warning me abot things. I have for the most part ignored her and thought she was just parnoid. I now see things with a clearer set of eyes. I started this thread beause, I wanted others to hear about the ways companies are finding things out. I'm sure someone,somewhere right now is compileing information about many of us and using our post from here,myspace, or anywhere else we post. I guess the safest way to keep from being noticed is to hide under a rock. .... JB
 

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another reason to not use your real name on any internet things....
That can be a problem when you are trying to convince your online customers to have confidence in you. You are asking them for their personal information like name, email address, phone number, credit card info.

You can help to gain their trust if you show them that you are a real person and accessible like a "real" business. Hiding your name on your internet ecommerce store could cost you sales.

As a customer myself, if the person that wants me to take out my wallet can trust me with their name, phone number, email address, then I definitely don't want to trust them with my private info.

Not all customers feel this way, but many do. That's one of the reasons why some customers prefer shopping online. So they can research the company on their own time and not have to worry about a salesman asking "can I help you" or trying to "sell" them on something. Customers are getting very savvy these days :)

Here's a good blog post about it: Worst mistake an ecommerce site can make
 

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Personally, I wouldn't work for a company that asked me questions like this.
I'd be prepared to be unemployed in future then :D Of course, it's things like this that drive plenty of us to self-employment, so it may not be an issue.

Speaking generally, I think it's appropriate for employers to look at whatever publicly available information they feel like looking at. If you don't want them looking at it, don't make it public.

The biggest problem is that people have a false sense of privacy on the internet. They think they can throw up whatever they want on view for all, yet somehow only their friends are going to look at it.

If employers are going to use this information though, they also need to start having realistic expectations. People go out, people get drunk, people take photos of it, and people post those photos on the internet with supposedly hilarious captions. It should be meaningless in a job interview.

But if those hilarious photos are of you, say, stealing street signs - it should come as no surprise that they don't want to hire you anymore.
 

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My son was denied a job because he had bad credit (none). I saw where several government workers lost their jobs after 20+ years because their credit was bad and they said they might be tempted if terrorists offered them money. Same with my son, they say if you have bad credit you are more likely to steal. How does anyone expect the economy to get better if they let people go from jobs because of a family emergency or something else that caused the bad credit. No wonder som many people are losing their homes
I think it is horrible myself.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Lewis, I agree with what your saying up to a point. Actually until , I read your post I thought the whole thing was unfair. I then just placed myself on the employers chair, I thought what if I was interviewing someone that I needed to depend on. I then did some research and found that this great candidate has several pictures posted in a drunken state. This then gives me a look at his private time and makes me wonder will he be dependable. I think this is why they are doing this type of research. It's easier to weed out potential problem employees before time,money and energy is spent on training. .... JB
 
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