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Social Networking Checks by Employers on the Rise

Social Networking Checks by Employers on the Rise

When it comes to our careers, social networking can be a double-edged sword. We love LinkedIn for the ability to connect with hiring managers, plus having a floating resume or CV on the world’s largest professional network free of charge.

But what about our social networking activities and presence on other sites? Can’t we use social networks to be, um, social?

The short answer is Yes – but often at a price.

You never know who is looking at your social networking

For the past several years, stories abound of job candidates who didn’t get jobs because recruiters visited certain pages of popular social networking sites and observed photos of alcohol-induced fun. Recruiters would locate Twitter feeds and find tweets that were negative, offensive, or even laced with typos or expletives. Too many selfies on Instagram? Probably a no-go from the company.

Employees have even gotten fired from questionable social networking activity, especially those employed in regulated industries, such as healthcare and financial services. Read some statistics from a past study here .

As such, we have learned of the dark side to updating our status via social media. Exercising judgment, some have devised solutions to being tracked – we realize we can never eliminate electronic footprints altogether – but we can be more cautious.

For example, because of the ever-changing and often confusing privacy settings, some have resorted to creating ‘shadow’ accounts on Facebook. They may have their ‘official’ Facebook profile – one which they give coworkers, bosses, clients, acquaintances, and even family members. But the other is reserved for close friends, for whom they feel that they can be their true selves online.

This is not dissimilar to having multiple email accounts – each expressing a different persona, and serving a different purpose.

Things get tricky when accessing multiple Facebook accounts on multiple devices, requiring logging in and out every time, and remembering which account you are signed in on.

That is why we created PurpleSlate

At PurpleSlate, we wanted to offer a solution. We wanted to remove the anxiety of maintaining multiple social networking personas and exercising judgment when posting to public social networks. We created an app whose privacy is dependent on the connections to people for whom you have a mobile number stored in your phone. As the mobile phone number seems to represent the strongest sense of personal information ownership – after all, one pays for the right to have a mobile phone – a connection to someone via that number is strong.

When you create an event and send invitations, there is zero possibility of that information being shared with strangers or the public. You can have confidence that the information and photos you share will remain private and only for the consumption of the individuals you designate.

Feel free to use PurpleSlate knowing that your and your connections’ information is free from sharing on public social networks.

Your boss, coworkers, or clients will not see your event or photos – unless you have invited them. Which, of course, might be a nice idea at some point.

Posted by Jake Wengroff on June 27, 2015.

Jake WengroffI have served as the Founding Chairman of the Social Media Strategies Summit, and have written for publications such as CMO.com and InformationWeek. I have been quoted in Time, Reuters, Bloomberg, and other publications on the topics of social media and marketing. If you enjoyed reading this post, join our email list to get free email updates.

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