The educational thoughts of Jason Epstein
THE PERSONAL VIEWS, OPINIONS AND COMMENTS CONTAINED HEREIN ARE SOLELY THOSE OF THE BLOG’S AUTHOR IN HIS PERSONAL CAPACITY, AND ARE NOT ENDORSED BY ANY OTHER PERSON OR ENTITY.
Eight Smithfield State High School students who joined a cyberbullying social networking group that branded another girl a "liar" have been suspended. The Smithfield High students, all girls, were suspended for one day and the Facebook group, which had 11 members, was shut down after The Cairns Post was alerted to it before the Easter school holidays. It is understood the Facebook group was started after an argument between friends. Smithfield High acting principal Barry Courtney said the school took a tough stance against any form of bullying."Our response is students who join any cyberbullying site will be dealt with and it is a suspendable offence and parents are contacted about it straight away," he said.
Here are 8 tips to monitor and protect one's online reputation:
Search your name. Type your first and last name within quotation marks into several popular search engines to see where you are mentioned and in what context. Narrow your search and use keywords that apply only to you, such as your city, employer and industry association.
Expand your search. Use similar techniques to search for your telephone numbers, home address, e-mail addresses, and personal website domain names. You should also search for your social security and credit card numbers to make sure they don't appear anywhere online.
Read blogs. If any of your friends or coworkers have blogs or personal web pages on social networking sites, check them out to see if they are writing about or posting pictures of you.
Sign up for alerts. Use the Google alert feature that automatically notifies you of any new mention of your name or other personal information.
Limit your personal information. Tweet/chat/discuss regarding business and the emerging trends in your industry, but limit posting information on your personal life, which could be a subject of major scrutiny by recruiters and hiring managers. Also, be sure you know how organizations will use your information before you give it to them.
Use privacy settings. Most social networking and photo-sharing sites allow you to determine who can access and respond to your content. If you're using a site that doesn't offer privacy settings, find another site.
Choose your photos and language thoughtfully. You need to ensure that information posted online is written professionally without use of swear words and catchy phrases. Also, be very selective in posting photographs, and use your judgment to ensure that these photographs are how you want the world to see you.
Take action If you find information about yourself online that is embarrassing or untrue, contact the website owner or administrator and ask them to remove it. Most sites have policies to deal with such requests.