Be A F.A.L.C.O.N. Online

November 11, 2015

The world is adding new technology, everyday it seems like our whole lives are consumed with new gadgets and websites. Putting information out is easier than ever before. However how much information is too much information? Do you really know who is looking at your social media? How much can people really find out about you?

Hot new trends spread like wildfires on the internet and the pressure is on to post and gain followers as fast as possible. Before posting online think about being a F.A.L.C.O.N. because you hold your future in your hand.

Perception is different for everyone. A picture can be interpreted many different ways. Before you post ask if yourself what your grandmother would say. Maybe refrain from pictures that may reveal too much or show reckless behavior.

Not all information is safe for online. Some information that should never be publicly posted is your address, where you hangout, what time you are going places, and when you are home alone. People can use anything you post about yourself to find information on how to harm you. Do not make it easy for bad people to track you. Make your accounts private, a few lost followers is worth keeping you safe.

Reread what you post, it is easy to forget that people cannot hear the inflection in what you are typing. What is meant to be funny can come off as rude. Make sure what you post is not offensive, if you would not say it in a normal everyday conversation do not post it. Think about how you feel when you scroll past some post just going on and on about controversial. Putting it on social media will just start a fight.

Freedom of speech is great, but not everyone wants to hear about your opinion. Try not post things that would have a negative backlash. If you are so passionate about a subject, do something that will change the world, do not go rant about it on facebook or twitter. Also you have the ability to move past a post, meaning do not get consumed in a fight or comment rude hateful things. Once it is online it is hard to take away. Hiding behind your keyboard typing hateful or hurtful posts will not do any good for anyone. Respect other’s views and move on.

‘Once it is on the internet it never goes away’, I can guarantee you have heard this phrase before, but have you really considered the gravity of the things you put online. It is common for many employers to run background checks on new applicants. Online posts are like baby pictures your mother has, just when you think they are gone they resurface and they are embarrassing. Therefore anything that would cause an employer to do a double take probably should not be online. Pictures on your friends’ profiles can be harmful to your future as well. If you see a picture someone else has up that puts you in a bad light just ask them to take it down or opt out of the next photo that could put you in a bad position later.

New apps and websites are coming out almost everyday. It is hard to know who is who online. If someone asks to friend you that you do not know, think twice before allowing them to. The person behind the keyboard is not always the person described in the profile. We have all heard the catfish horror stories of creepy stalkers who impersonate to get close to someone. Do not be so quick to allow people to see your information and if you have not met them in real life they are not your friend. With this being said never meet someone in person that you met on online.

Before you post again think about what you are putting at stake. When you post online it is permanent and can change your future forever. Be cautious, the internet can be very dangerous and not everyone is online for honest reasons.

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