You Can't Always Blame Facebook

Jessica Lee, LCI Account Executive here…

Last week, Facebook announced new privacy controls after backlash from users who complained that the social network was sharing too much information with outside sources and making it too difficult for users to edit their privacy settings.

While I’m very glad that Facebook has made the effort to make controlling our profiles easier, I also think that it’s our own responsibility to maintain our own online “brand” and be selective about what we choose to put online, even if we intend it for our friends’ eyes only. Like we tell our clients during media training sessions, you should never say or do anything that you don’t want to appear on the cover of the New York Times. Recently, a friend of mine (let’s call her Friend A) endured a few days of silent treatment from Friend B after she posted photos of Friend B dancing with some guys at a bar – Friend B demanded Friend A remove the photos because she was afraid that someone she was dating might see the photos. Now, perhaps if Facebook had a setting where friends would have to approve photo tags, it wouldn’t have been an issue – but at the same time, isn’t our own responsibility not to do things in public that we might regret later?

The good news is that a recent Pew Internet & American Life Project study showed that people my age are quite conscientious about moderating their online reputations:

The Pew study found, for instance, that social networkers ages 18 to 29 were the most likely to change the privacy settings on their profiles to limit what they share with others online. The percentage who did so was 71 percent, compared with just 55 percent of the 50- to 64-year-old bracket. Meanwhile, about two-thirds of all social networkers who were surveyed said they’ve tightened security settings.

The survey also determined that:

— About half of young people in that 18-29 bracket have deleted comments that others have made on their profile, compared with just 29 percent of those ages 30 to 49 and 26 percent of 50- to 64-year-olds. The numbers were similar when it came to social networkers who removed their names from photos that were tagged to identify them.

— When asked how much they can trust social networking sites, 28 percent of the youngest adults surveyed said “never.” A fifth in the 30-49 bracket said that and just 14 percent of those ages 50 to 64 agreed.
(From the San Jose Mercury News)

So get online and start editing those profiles! And now, here are some Buzzworthy activities coming up in June:

Dine About Town:
From June 1-15, San Francisco restaurants are offering prix fixe meals for $17.95 (lunch) and $34.95 (dinner). It’s a great way to check out eateries you might not normally be able to afford. So far I’ve made plans with my friends to try Aziza and Campton Place.

Summerthing:
A free concert in Golden GatePark by Alice radio – this year’s lineup is Lifehouse, Kris Allen and One EskimO. A great way to spend a day in the sun with your friends!

FourSite:
The SF Museum of Craft+Design (an LCI client) invites you to watch four California artists in action as they build large-scale installations, transforming the museum space. The installation period runs through June 8 and the exhibition continues through September 18.

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1 Comment

  1. David Landis Reply

    Jessica – couldn’t agree more. Don’t say things – or do things – that you don’t want to see appear in public later. First good rule of PR! All the best, David