If you thought you could "be yourself" on Facebook, as opposed to the public free-for-all of Twitter or the buttoned-down professional circles of LinkedIn, you may want to reconsider.
This June, the Federal Trade Commission approved the creation of a "Social Intelligence Report" that lets private companies archive your social media activities for up to seven years, for "compliance" reasons. A human resources manager can hire consultants, like those at the Social Intelligence Corporation, to compile a report of what you've posted across all your social networks (kind of like how a landlord checks your credit score). Social Intelligence Corporation's CEO Max Drucker told Social Media Today that they generally flag four types of posts in their reports: racially insensitive remarks, sexually explicit materials, flagrant displays of weaponry, and other demonstrations of clearly illegal activity. Getting fired over Facebook for trigger-happy posts can't be all that difficult, especially if you're one of the 250 million members who access Facebook through a cell phone app.[RELATED_ARTICLE]
All this is confirmed in the infographic below, created by MindFlash and based on a 2009 survey from CareerBuilder. It's a bit old, but it does remind us that Facebook screening results in more people losing jobs (or opportunities for jobs) than getting them. It also shows how much more influential the Palo Alto-based network is over other social networks, like Twitter and LinkedIn, which are notably more open. We can't wait to see this infographic eventually updated with Google .
To be on the safe side, crank up your privacy settings on Facebook to the maximum, because these companies can only pull content you've made public. For the most up-to-date guide to crafting your online profile, see Social Networking 101: A Beginner's Guide to Facebook, Twitter, Google , & LinkedIn."
Credit: MindFlash (click to enlarge)
Copyright © 2010 Ziff Davis Publishing Holdings Inc.