Friday, March 18, 2011

Rules of engagement and Facebook:

Firstly I want you to think about why do you engage in Facebook (FB)? What is your primary focus?...this question is very important as you will read further into this blog. For me it is about connecting with people, friends, associates, overseas family, local family, it’s about linking, networking and disseminating information.... FB is one of the fastest growing social mediums in the is changing the way we communicate.... I see it as a fantastic way to get information out to the cyber world..... and remember it stays there forever:

A recent study shows that 54% of Australians use FB.........

Recently a friend described and instance where she was reprimanded in her work place over a Facebook (FB) comment, in fact she did not write the comment she ‘liked’ the comment; I thought that the reprimand was a rather excessive step, so I delved into the possible legal implications of such an activity and have decided that there are some specific rules that you need to consider when engaging on FB.... in fact we all know the rules I think that often people believe the comments they are making are so ambiguous, insipid or insidious that it won’t be connected to them or their work place..... Think again.

The term ‘friend’ on FB is a false term it lures you into a artificial sense of security; come on think about it.... how many of us really have 200-300 friends in real life?.... when I was growing up they use to say “if you are lucky, you will be able to count your true friends on one hand”..... In FB the people I allow in yes are called ‘friends’ and some truly are but the majority are valued colleagues, acquaintances, ex students, friends of friends...etc... not what I consider true ‘friends’, I have to say I like them otherwise I would not invite or accept them..... but in the true sense of the word friends.... most of them are not.... please don’t misunderstand this.... but it is a fact of life: Therefore I go back to the question Why do you engage in FB? You have to really consider who you let into your FB world and what you publish. Keep work and FB separate.

After doing a web search regarding some legal issues on FB... I have come up with a list of rules that might help you keep out of trouble in the work place or anywhere else relating to FB.

Rule 1: really consider carefully who you are letting into your FB as a ‘friend’, if you allow mangers, work colleagues/associates this means you let your work into your private life. Ensure you have a closed privacy setting.

Rule 2: Do not mention anything to do with your work place no matter how insignificant you think it is... if you can be connected to your work by your comment you probably break the golden rules of ‘confidentially’ and ‘Code of Conduct’.

Rule 3: Be mindful of the photos of yourself you allow on FB, these photos become the property of FB and if you are acting in an unbecoming manner this could come back to bite you later. Don’t allow people to take your photo without asking you and letting you know if it is going on FB.

Rule 4: Do not write on FB when you are angry or under the influence of alcohol once the information is in cyber space it stays there: Internet Defamation is the fastest growing litigation don’t write anything derogatory about anyone.

Rule 5: People seem to believe what you do outside of work does not affect your work life....WRONG....this is dependent on what it is and if you have you bought your profession/company/school into disrepute? Just think of our footballers .....there is a prime example of unbecoming behavior.

Rule 6: Social responsibility: this is like a duty of care to society, a reciprocal duty: we owe society and society owes us a mutually beneficial obligation. Be kind to each other.

The bottom line FB is on your employers radar; remember be careful who you invite in your world, don’t talk about work, don’t say anything derogatory and be mindful of the photos you let FB have:

Have a read.. How to use FB without loosing your job over it.....
Happy Facebooking!!!!!!!

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