Social Question

ETpro's avatar

Do you know what not to share online?

Asked by ETpro (34605points) September 15th, 2010

This is regarding the article ’‘6 Things You Should Never Reveal on Facebook’’ warns about what not to share on Facebook, and why not to share it.

The same prohibitions that apply to apply here and on other online Social Media as well, of course. Nosy employers, insurance companies, credit agencies, identity thrives and law enforcement all know how to use the Google. So don’t post information online, even in bits and pieces here and there, that any of them could compile to hurt you. Failure to follow safe specs suggestions (revealing too many personal specifications) can result in the loss of a job, auto or health insurance being hiked sky high or even your policy being canceled, identity theft and even criminal prosecution.

It’s fun to be open and honest in what seems to be a setting where you are anonymous. But be aware that what happens online stays online—and it could come back to haunt you. When a dedicated net-savvy sleuth is determined to figure out who you are and follow you online, your anonymity might be easier to crack than you think. Anyone with additional suggestions for safe specs feel free to add your input.

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23 Answers

TexasDude's avatar

Excellent link, ETpro. Out of the listed behaviors, I’m only really guilty of sharing my birth year and certain vices (I post occasionally on cigar forums). My birth year is easily deduced based on my age, anyway.

This sort of thing raises interesting ethical questions about online privacy. Do companies and the government have the right to mine data from social networking sites? Or do we, as both consumers and citizens, have any rights to prevent this, aside from the assumed responsibility of keeping our personal data safe?

iamthemob's avatar

Personally, I think that the age of privacy is nearly over. That I’m fine with. I agree with @Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard that the question will really become what rights to people have to use data that they have mined against you. For instance…I think it’s completely inappropriate for an employer to hold an employee accountable for actions in their “private” lives unless it has a direct effect on their work. With information becoming more readily available, I think it’s going to become more important how we compartmentalize our behaviors – and respect for proper compartmentalization rather than privacy will (or should) be more the norm.

I dream, maybe.

muppetish's avatar

This reminds me, and it is somewhat related, I have developed the habit of writing down every phone number that I find on Facebook. I have no intention in ever calling these people, but they should not be posting their digits on someone’s wall where everyone can see it, write it down, and do with it what they please.

I don’t break any of the security points raised in the article except giving out my date of birth. Does revealing how old I am really give away that much?

I’ve been using the Internet for the majority of my life and have been fairly conservative about what information I am willing to reveal, to whom, and when. The majority of the people I have gone to school with? Not so much.

EDIT: I also find it really amusing how the friends who intend to one day work for the government post not-so-flattering information and/or photos of themselves online. I could singlehandedly run a smear campaign against them… if I were that sort of person.

ucme's avatar

My cookies.They’re my cookies & i’m not sharing them with anyone see.Yummy!

TexasDude's avatar

@iamthemob, I think it’s completely inappropriate for an employer to hold an employee accountable for actions in their “private” lives unless it has a direct effect on their work

I completely agree.

iamthemob's avatar


It’s upsetting that employers seem to feel differently, sometimes.

chyna's avatar

A girl I used to work with (she is an intern through a temp agency) posted almost daily how much she hates her job. I don’t understand why anyone would do that, not only because other people that work there can read it, but, really, quit if you hate it so much.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

No S.S.#, no address, and I’m unfindable on FB, anyway.

iamthemob's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir that sounds like a challenge, Ms. Simone…

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@iamthemob Take it. I’m sure it’s not that hard

ETpro's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard & @iamthemob The data miners need to be reminded that truth is, like the Sword of Damocles, a weapon that is sharp on both sides and cuts as readily either way you swing it. We can just as easily create and distribute online databases of people and companies who misuse mined data. Imagine a snooty employer’s surprise when, after firing employees for their personal behavior that has no effect on job performance, they discover that their help wanted ads go unanswered and they can no longer maintain a sufficient workforce to stay profitable and grow.

iamthemob's avatar


So why don’t we? I’m on board with that project.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

I am listed as totally private on FB, no one can do a search on me. Only friends can see my info, and I don’t friend every Tom, Dick and Harry that asks, either.

downtide's avatar

I’ve occasionally been guilty of posting my birth year (or at least my age) occasionally, including here in a Fluther question this week. And I do occasionally post when I’m going away but it’s rare that someone else isn’t staying at home. In any case I’ve never posted my address, not even the town.

Other things I will never, ever post online is the name of the company I work for, the names of anyone else in my family, and my full name. My real surname only appears on Facebook (and it’s not that rare of a name) but nowhere else. Add my middle name, which is unusual, and I’m probably unique. So no. No-one gets that.

Like @WillWorkForChocolate , my Facebook is locked down to friends only, and I will only add people I already know face-to-face.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

I’m really a moron when it comes to being private. I post everything without thinking twice.

CherrySempai's avatar

Be careful posting pictures. Some college students can get kicked out because of certain photos. Girls in my high school got suspended for underage drinking photos and disrespectful things about teachers written in posts.

It also depends on your privacy settings and who you friend, but it’s just stupid to put things like that on Facebook anyways. :)

DominicX's avatar

I’ve given away my birth year (1991) and I’ve talked about my underage drinking (hella). Other than that, I haven’t really done any of the others.

chyna's avatar

I’m guessing nude pics are a no no too.

ETpro's avatar

@iamthemob I’m up for it. More by PM

@chyna That’s probably a wise thing to avoid. Even a lady who works as a stripper right now may some day need to get a desk job at some stuffy company pushing papers. And those images will stay out there year after year.

chyna's avatar

@ETpro Trust me, no one wants to see me nekked. :-)

ETpro's avatar

@chyna You won’t find me posiing in my birthday suit either. There has been zero public interest in such an album. :-)

AshlynM's avatar

It should be common sense what to put online. If you don’t want anyone else to know what you’re thinking, simply don’t write it down. Don’t put something stupid like yourself getting high on weed or making out with a minor if you’re over 21. Obviously you shouldn’t post credit card or bank account numbers or your street address.

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