A Twitter friend, Lauren Gray, recommended Socioclean.com about a month ago. (If you’re not following her, you should be! She always suggests awesome articles!) I just had a chance to use it and was a bit surprised by the results.
According to this article on the Huffington Post, “SocioClean lets you scan all your different online social networks and then delete the offending items. Taking into consideration the landscape of a universe where it’s all too easy to broadcast the dirty minutia of your real life online, SocioClean helps you monitor and maintain your Internet presence.”
Here, I thought I had a fairly sterile Facebook profile. Turns out, I received a D! Most of that was from other people’s posts on my wall, but a few of my posts came up under the various categories, “Racial, Alcohol/Drugs, Sexual (butt does count), Aggression and Profanity.” I used the word pissed a few times and it took all the tennis posts that mentioned ball and misconstrued it. As for friends mentioning wine and beer, I’ll admit I have a few status posts mentioned the Wine Cellar and Bistro or the Hermann Wine and Chocolate trail (two automatic hits).
In all 14 wall posts made the list, one group, 9 photos (the comments on the photos, not the actual photo), 24 status posts (including two about heat stroke and one about strep throat). If that gives you a D, I’m curious about what the average score is and how other people fair. I also hope the search filter will eventually be expanded to go before 2009.
I was surprised at the nostalgia this search brought up and pleased with how easy it was to click on the offending status posts and either delete them or untag myself from the photos.
Bottom line: If you’re looking for a job or have to use your personal Facebook profile to manage company pages, it wouldn’t hurt to run this search just to see what’s out there.
By now, it is no surprise that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg does not value privacy in his business model. A colleague of mine and dear friend, Matt LaCasse had a post on his blog, Public Relations and Other Ruminations stating that he agrees with making the information public, even if it results in an embarrassing photo or two of him.
I respectfully disagree. My friends call me Puritanical because even though I am well above the legal drinking age, I don’t want photos of my on Facebook with alcohol. In my hand. In front of me. Anywhere in the photo. It isn’t the image I want to portray. I untag myself from the photo and ask posters to crop or remove the photo. I believe if you’re my friend, you’ll understand.
This policy has created some issues. A former high school journalism teacher posted all the archival footage from my freshman and sophomore year online. Unfortunately, at the request of my employer at the time, I had to ask for it to be removed. It wasn’t professional enough. While I sent a nicely worded, please cease and desist request, he took it personally. Let’s just say it didn’t end well.
Initially, Facebook started as exclusive to specific colleges and people with specific .edu addresses. I liked that closed community feeling. As Facebook became open to more and more people, I stopped using it as much. Now that my parents and their friends are using it more than my friends, I use Facebook even less.
Here’s where my biggest concern about privacy comes in: other users. What’s to prevent an estranged parent or family member from posting your birthday, home address and phone number under children or relations? Nothing. Even if you don’t have this information online and are against doing so, there is no recourse should that estranged person post that information and refuse to take it down.
I do think Facebook has a great business model and public information must be a part of that. Facebook has done an exceptional job of growing their community. I just don’t know if in 20 years when my peers are running for an elected office or when a stalker finds my home address because an estranged relative listed me under nieces, how that community will hold up.