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3 Social Media Rules to Follow to Prevent Embarrassment or Getting Fired

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Your co-workers are very proud of you for being smart with your social media

With the news of Ashton Kutcher’s Twitter blunder, I thought it would be appropriate this Friday to offer up 3 Social Media Rules to Follow. From celebrities and politicians to us average everyday people, there is quite the list of mistakes being made on both Twitter and Facebook.

I know some of you are going to head out to your local bars this weekend to kick back and relax. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s times like those that some of the biggest social media mistakes are made. Yep, you know the ones I’m talking about. And of course, some of them are made just because of sheer misinformation or ignorance.

So, let’s start this weekend off right. I want you to walk into your office Monday morning with your head held high, not thinking “I wonder how many people saw my Facebook post?”

3 Social Media Rules to Follow

1. Get a DD (designated driver) and a DPH (designated phone handler – yes, I just made that up)

In Peter Shankman’s keynote speech at BWELA, he gave some fantastic tips on blogging, business and life tips. One life tip he follows is to leave his phone at home when he goes out with a particular friend. He learned the hard way that you can tweet and Facebook some pretty stupid stuff when you’re, shall we say, not thinking 100% clearly. So, either leave the phone at home or give it to a trusted friend. Emphasis on trusted.

2. Know who your followers and friends are

Back in 2009, teacher Ashley Pane was fired from her job when she posted pictures of herself on a trip to Europe. Some of the pictures were of her holding glasses of alcohol, as well as a reference to a local trivia contest with a profanity in its title.

Although her Facebook page was private, she was friends with a few of the teachers from her school. Long story short, the principal found out about the photos through a parent, called her in and gave her a choice: resign or be suspended.

If you think posting certain photos of yourself or a status update could compromise your job, don’t post them. Better yet, don’t be “friends” with your boss or with your friends’ kids.

3. Get back to the good ‘ol days where everything didn’t end up on the internets (the s added to internet was done on purpose, in case you were wondering)

Do you remember those days? Long gone is the water cooler talk when everyone is chatting about their weekend. Instead, the water cooler talk usually involves “Oh Em Gee, did you SEE what Frank did this weekend?”

Imagine not posting what you did this weekend on Facebook or Twitter. As you walk into the office on Monday, you’ll be the mystery man or woman. No one will know where you were or what you did. You will actually have to tell them, face to face and in-real-life. Crazy idea, I know.

Now it’s your turn. Share some social media rules you follow, wish you would have followed or wish your friends would follow. And, have fun this weekend as you use your social media smarts.

Julie Bonner covers breaking news in several different areas for the BlogWorld Blog. After blogging in a variety of topics, she found her calling in the world of toys and owns ToyXplosion, a site dedicated to all things toys. Feel free to connect with her on Twitter (@juliebonner).


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