Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Yet Another Facebook Profile Photo Warning – Take This Advice Seriously!

Yesterday Peter Shankman’s www.helpareporter.com email alert had this query:

Doing market research for an article:

What, if anything, are kinds/young adults taught in grade school/high school and/or college re: online profiles and social media such as Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, etc.?

What if you found out that your college-age nephew, who is slated to take over the family business after college, looks like a total idiot online? How do we teach our upcoming “young professionals” that posting pics of themselves in nothing but a diaper at Halloween is just not appropriate?

Of course I immediately responded to this query because I often blog about this problem of inappropriate photos and personal info on social media. I even forwarded to the reporter my post of June 6th (see http://tinyurl.com/5g9hgr).

And then I went on Facebook because I’m working with a young woman and her mother to more effectively use Facebook and LinkedIn (and start on Twitter) to help establish their professional brands. And what do you think I found on the young woman’s profile page?

A profile photo of her making a face (she’ll be 27 in September), and for “interested in” on her profile she had put Men.

I immediately emailed her that she must:

a) replace that goofy photo with an appropriate profile photo

b) eliminate the “interested in” entry and instead use the “looking for” entry of Friendship and Networking

Was I annoyed that I had to tell her this? Yes and no. Yes, because she should have known better. No, because obviously from the reporter’s query there are lots of young adults who don’t know better.

If you’re a reader of this blog, I sincerely hope you’ve taken my warnings to heart. Be sure your profile photos on all social media sites of which you’re a member are appropriate as well as having appropriate comments on your profile pages.

The career that you do NOT sabotage if you follow this advice is your own.

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