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Is Your Profile Safe?

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By Richard Martorello, SMC Member

Companies are using third-party applications to comb through profiles found on Facebook. A popular application used to sometimes access personal profiles is BeKnown.

BeKnown is a Facebook app by Monster and provides an easy way to search for and apply for jobs by job seekers within Facebook. Personal Facebook information can be enabled private by users and its fully integrated with Facebook.

According to Alison Doyle, job search and employment expert with About.com’s job search site, BeKnown is for all types and levels of job seekers. Doyle continues by saying “You don’t need to be a professional to use BeKnown. BeKnown provides networking on Facebook, regardless of the position you’re seeking. In addition, with availability in 19 languages, it’s a truly international networking tool.”

“Another important feature of BeKnown is that it separates personal from professional. Your BeKnown profile is separate from your Facebook profile and it stays that way. You don’t have to worry, any more than usual, about your personal life and what you post on Facebook overlapping with your work life,” Doyle explains.

An example of a company using third-party apps is Sears. Sears job site through Facebook can allow an applicant the option of logging on where a third-party application can draw profile information such as a friend list.

The company assumes “that people keep their social profiles updated to the minute, which allows us to consider them for other jobs in the future or for ones that they may not realize are available currently,” said Sears Holdings Inc. spokeswoman Kim Freely.

Social media has its good and bad sides. BeKnown and Facebook are good when used properly by users and jobseekers. Remember to read the user profile setup instructions of the application. Review and set profile settings to the level one is most comfortable with. If uncertain with a profile setting, check the applications Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

Learn more about how social media may work for you at Merced College and its new Social Media Club.

References:
– “Some employers are asking job applicants for Facebook username, password”, The Associated Press, The Star-Ledger (nj.com),
http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/03/some_employers_are_asking_job.html
– “BeKnown”, Alison Doyle, About.com Guide, http://jobsearch.about.com/od/social-job-search/a/beknown.htm

The views and opinions expressed here are not those of Merced College

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The Internet and Job Prospects

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By Richard Martorello, SMC Member

Diane Stafford wrote in an August 2011 article printed in the Fresno Bee about Internet immaturity can hurt your job prospects.

On March 20, 2012, written in many newspapers across the country and found online on many newspaper websites and search engines was a news article titled “Some employers are asking job applicants for Facebook username, password.”

It would appear some companies and public government agencies are wanting to take a peek at social profiles of applicants and employees. These organizations want to see more than just the public profile viewable online. They want to see an individual’s private profile as well and are going so far as to ask for a username and password to get this access.

There is a new practice by managers where they are reviewing publicly available profiles to learn more about job candidates on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. Some companies are asking applicants to “friend” human resource managers.

Chief Deputy Rusty Thomas, from the Sheriff’s Department of McLean County, Illinois, defended the practice, saying applicants have a right to refuse. But no one has ever done so. Thomas said that “speaks well of the people we have apply.”

When asked what sort of material would jeopardize job prospects, Thomas said “it depends on the situation” but could include “inappropriate pictures or relationships with people who are underage, illegal behavior.”

“In the past, we’ve talked to friends and neighbors, but a lot of times we found that applicants interact more through social media sites than they do with real friends,” said Captain Mike Harvey, Spotsylvania County, Va., Sheriff’s Department. “Their virtual friends will know more about them than a person living 30 yards away from them.”

Harvey said investigators look for any “derogatory” behavior that could damage the agency’s reputation.

E. Chandlee Bryan, a career coach and co-author of the book “The Twitter Job Search Guide,” said job seekers should always be aware of what’s on their social media sites and assume someone is going to look at it.

Management guru Tom Peters, as reported by Stafford, warned years ago that we each are “the brand called you.” What message does your online brand send?

Learn more about how social media may work for you at Merced College and its new Social Media Club.

References:
– “Internet immaturity can hurt your job prospects,” Diane Stafford, The Fresno Bee, August 17, 2011
– “Some employers are asking job applicants for Facebook username, password”, The Associated Press, The Star-Ledger (nj.com),
http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/03/some_employers_are_asking_job.html

The views and opinions expressed here are not those of Merced College

Your Online History and Your Career

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By Richard Martorello, SMC Member

A recent article in Baseline Magazine revealed a Microsoft survey of more than 5,000 people saying we are not dealing very well with reality. To clarify, the reality of what is posted online.

It may not be pretty but our online reputation precedes us. We post online. Our friends post online. What is the connection? The connection is social media pages.

55% of the adult respondents claimed they were concerned about their online reputation. However, 30% of the respondents felt they had little or no control over their online reputation.

Meanwhile, 38% of the respondents do say they think about the impact of their online actions on others including social network friends. Posting information online that has damaged relationships or harmed others was done by 12% of those surveyed. Negatively impacted by online activities by others on social media and other outlets have made 14% guilty by association.

What are some of the results of these social behaviors? Three negative consequences were reported by the respondents.

  1. Getting fired (21%),
  2. Getting turned down for a job (16%), and
  3. Getting turned down for a mortgage (15%).

What is posted on social media pages can impact our personal image and professional career.

“Your online reputation is shaped by your interactions in the online world and spans the disparate and varied data about you, whether created and posted by you or others,” says Brendon Lynch, chief privacy officer at Microsoft. “This information can have a lasting presence online, and can affect your life in many ways — from maintaining friendships to helping you keep or land a new job.”

It is said what happens in Las Vegas stays in Las Vegas. And maybe we should remember this piece of social media wisdom:

Say it. Forget it. Write it. Regret it.

Learn more about how social media may work for you at Merced College and its new Social Media Club.

References:
– “Your Online History Jeopardizes Your Career”, Dennis McCafferty, Baseline Magazine,
http://www.baselinemag.com/c/a/Careers/Your-Online-History-Jeopardizes-Your-Career-479983/?kc=BLBLBEMNL03072012STR3

The views and opinions expressed here are not those of Merced College

Your Reputation May Precede You

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By Richard Martorello, SMC Member

A recent article in Baseline Magazine revealed a Microsoft survey of more than 5,000 people saying we are not dealing very well with reality.  To clarify, the reality of what is posted online.

It may not be pretty but our online reputation precedes us.  We post online.  Our friends post online.  What is the connection?  The connection is social media pages.

What is posted on social media pages can impact our personal image and professional career.

“Your online reputation is shaped by your interactions in the online world and spans the disparate and varied data about you, whether created and posted by you or others,” says Brendon Lynch, chief privacy officer at Microsoft.  “This information can have a lasting presence online, and can affect your life in many ways — from maintaining friendships to helping you keep or land a new job.”

Below are some of the Microsoft survey results reported.

  1. 55% of adult respondents say their online reputation concerns them.
  2. 49% of respondents do not use social media sites’ privacy settings.
  3. 44% surveyed have said they actively thought about their online activities and the long-term consequences.
  4. 37% of respondents have rarely or never used a search engine to find out how their name is trending.
  5. 17% of respondents revealed sharing private information online unintentionally.

It may not be directly stated by the the survey, but one should think about what is posted online.  If your posting is meant to be private, please make sure your social media application’s privacy settings are properly set.  If you are uncertain, review the application’s online help

Dennis McCafferty, the article’s author, writes “Ultimately, though, your chances for success depend on getting proactive.”

Learn more about how social media may work for you at Merced College and its new Social Media Club.

References:
– “Your Online History Jeopardizes Your Career”, Dennis McCafferty, Baseline Magazine,
http://www.baselinemag.com/c/a/Careers/Your-Online-History-Jeopardizes-Your-Career-479983/?kc=BLBLBEMNL03072012STR3

The views and opinions expressed here are not those of Merced College

FYI, DBEYR. YWIA.

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By Richard Martorello, SMC Member

(For Your Information, Don’t Believe Everything You Read. You’re Welcome In Advance.)

Huh?

The cryptic looking code you see above is known as Texting. A text message is the act of typing and sending a brief, electronic message via a wireless network to another person. These short messages, usually less than 160 characters, can be viewed by another person on a mobile or handheld device such as a Blackberry, a cell phone, a PDA or a pager.

There is an increased use of using acronyms, chat acronyms, shorthand and smileys in text messages by more and more people as the screens on many mobile devices are rather small. What can now be called text message shorthand is now appearing in instant messaging (IM), newsgroup postings, chat rooms, blogs, and in electronic mail.

Wikipedia explains “text messages can be used to interact with automated systems such as ordering products and services for mobile phones or participating in contests. Advertisers and service providers use direct text marketing to notify mobile phone users about promotions, payment due dates and other notifications that can usually be sent by post, e-mail or voicemail.”

As social media evolves with users, communication follows course with respect to how we used the medium. Initially, language presented and viewed to the non-user of the medium will find it difficult to understand the message sent. Over time, rules of etiquette are established and standardize for all to learn. This in turn makes it easier for the non-user to be able to participate in the medium experience. Meanwhile, the experience user is able to refine their skills and more effectively present their message.

Texting is a part of the social media experience. There are also blogs, vlogs (video blog), social networks, and social photo and video sharing sites. Let us not forget electronic mail and websites.

Learn more about how social media may work for you at Merced College and its new Social Media Club.

References:
The Fine Print: References and Disclaimer (see above)
– “The List of Chat Acronyms & Text Message Shorthand”, Netlingo.com, http://www.netlingo.com/acronyms.php
– “Text messaging”, Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Text_messaging

The views and opinions expressed here are not those of Merced College

What is Social Media?

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By Richard Martorello, SMC Member

Daniel Nations, a freelance writer and programmer, explained Social Media on About.com Web Trends in the following way:

“The best way to define social media is to break it down.  Media is an instrument on communication, like a newspaper or a radio, so social media would be a social instrument of communication.”

“Think of regular media as a one-way street where you can read a newspaper or listen to a report on television, but you have very limited ability to give your thoughts on the matter.”

“Social media, on the other hand, is a two-way street that gives you the ability to communicate too.”

Joseph Thornley, author of the ProPR blog site and CEO of Thornley Fallis and 76design, refers to social media in his plain language definition as:

“Social media are online communications in which individuals shift fluidly and flexibly between the role of audience and author.  To do this, they use social software that enables anyone without knowledge of coding, to post, comment on, share or mash up content and to form communities around shared interests.”

Today’s world of the Internet is not like its early days where one would mouse click through the World Wide Web one hyperlink at a time.  We can do so much more online with recent advances in hardware and software technologies.  Beside the what we may now call the “basics” of electronic mail, website viewing, and search, we can bank, buy and sell products, order tickets and view our favorite newspapers, magazines and television events online.

Our desire to communicate with each other has provided the opportunity to create blogs, vlogs (video blog), social networks, and social photo and video sharing sites.  Social media has given us the chance to self-publish our thoughts to others freely and for profit.
So what is social media?

Maybe the easiest definition of what social media is can best be described by Jacob JS Bornman:
“Any online application or a combination of applications, whereby individuals or groups can interact, for social reasons.”

Learn more about how social media may work for you at Merced College and its new Social Media Club.

References:
– “What is Social Media?”, Daniel Nations, About.com Web Trends, http://webtrends.about.com/od/web20/a/social-media.htm
– “What is ‘social media?'”, Joseph Thornley, ProPR, http://propr.ca/2008/what-is-social-media/

The views and opinions expressed here are not those of Merced College