Manage Your Online Image

Do you Google yourself? Come on, admit it… we all do. We all want to know what other people are saying about us. We want to know if people like us, or just tolerate us. We want to know if people are spreading rumors online or anything unsavory about us.

Our online image  also relates to what we post about ourselves, not just what others say about us. We share pictures, comments, and status updates on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media outlets. Sharing information about yourself is something you have complete control over so do so with care.

Image I copied from the internet. The girls in it posted this in 2007. I'm sure they want this picture off the internet

We all have done unpleasant things in our lives that we hope stay locked away, but we sometimes send text or post those un-pleasantries to get attention or as a joke. Do you have nude pictures, one night stand information, or a drunken night at the club online?  Today it may seem funny, because you had a blast at the bar with your friends, or you paid for professional topless photos… Why not share them online? The reality is those images and words will now follow you FOREVER. Anyone can copy your comments or save an image. If you don’t believe me go to Bossip.com or TMZ.com and see how many tweets and pictures they copy to circulate the internet.

Anthony Weiners Twit-pic of his shlong got him booted out of Congress

Your online image can cost you your job, a good relationship, or a lot of humiliation. So I encourage you to search your name, but also go through your previous comments and pictures you posted on your social media accounts and remove anything that makes you look bad.

SEARCH & REMOVE

  • If you search your name and find negative information including rumors that are not true, request that the owner of the website remove the post. Words can really hurt you. Many people believe everything they read, so be proactive in removing wrong and negative information.
  • You don’t want negative information about you online, don’t write cruel and ugly information about other people, even if it’s true. You are in control of your own actions, so choose the higher ground when dealing with conflicts. You will be judged based on what people read about you and what you write. Only write funny, positive information online. If you are upset with a friend, let them know directly, face-to-face. Posting disagreements online will make the situation worse.
  • Don’t post nude, provocative, bad, or drunken photos of yourself online. These images are completely in your control. It’s not funny to see you passed out after a night of partying. If you don’t look great in a photo, don’t post it. You should never be in lingerie or topless in a photo or be in a sexual pose or any similar pose in pictures online. If your friends post pictures of you that you do not like, ask them to remove it. If you tell your friend how uncomfortable it makes you feel they should understand and remove it.
Ellen Simonetti Fired from airline for posing and posting this sexy picture
In today’s world searching the internet for negative information about you is a must. In a 2009 survey over 79% of hiring managers looked at online information about you. I’m pretty positive that freaks you out. It should. Like potential employers, most of us look at the profiles of friends, potential boyfriends, and coworkers on FacebookLinkedIn, or Twitter. We want to know what their family looks like, what interests they have, and where they like to hangout. Inquiring minds want to know how professional or wild you are.
Use the internet as a marketing tool for your life. Manage your image with a vision of 10-20 years down the line. You never know what opportunities may come your way. You don’t want to scare off the new guy, get turned down for a job, or have years of humiliation due to careless behavior.

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