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Week-in-review: How public is too public?

Posted May 6th, 2010 by Carroll King Schuller

How much exposure on social networking sites is too much?  Protecting your personal information while at the same time carefully crafting your online persona can be a full-time job.

From Private to Public

Earlier this week, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, announced a policy change that allows for the disclosure of Facebook profile information to third parties for the purposes of marketing and marketing research.   Unless you manually opt out, all of your information will be considered “public.”

Online advertisers and privacy groups are going to be squaring off over this issue for a long time.  Bloggers at Inside Facebook  explore the nuances of the issue.  To hear even more, mosey on over to the latest Tech Talk podcast on the NY Times. Regardless of how you feel about the new announcement, it serves as an important reminder to think about how much of yourself you broadcast on the web.

If you think you’re being smart enough, think again.

In the midst of this Facebook brouhaha, Consumer Reports published a report (just yesterday!) showing that 52% of social networking users post risky information.The report offers 7 tips for protecting yourself–including checking on and using important privacy controls and refraining from mentioning when you’ll be away from home.

Protecting your personal information is one thing, and managing your online persona is another.

During the Italian Renaissance, the ideal courtier was to exemplify sprezzatura– rehearsed carelessness, a studied nonchalance.  Any skill that he had must seem effortless rather than practiced.In some ways, managing our online identities requires a similar mastery, a kind of sprezzatura of web conduct.Here are a couple suggestions, particularly for folks whose careers in small or large part require their participation in social networking sites:

— Disclose some things, but not everything.  Don’t completely stop posting about your family, but consider abbreviating your children’s names.  Call a kid S. instead of Sarah, or J. instead of Jane.

— Consider cultivating a double presence.  Create one page for close, personal friends with tightly controlled privacy settings.  Use  a separate page for a larger network of associates, colleagues, and clients.

— Stay positive as much as possible.   If your day sucked or your boss is terrible, find some other outlet for airing your complaints.

Finally, just to make you laugh on a Friday (come on, people!), here is a video showing what would happen if we interacted in real  life like we do on Facebook.

more about “FaceBook In Reality – from www.idiots…“, posted with vodpod

If you feel that you or someone you know could benefit from working with a life coach or career coach to help you with these types of issues, contact Carroll King Schuller for a free consultation today.  804-288-0099