Watching what you post online

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Aliceacc, Jan 28, 2009.

  1. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jan 28, 2009

    Today we had a faculty meeting. Snow or no snow, the kids had the scheduled early dismissal, and we had a meeting from 2-2:45.

    We talked about boundaries, and about how many kids don't seem to realize that there are boundaries. About how often they seem to forget all their common sense when it comes to electronic media.

    One of the topics we discussed was kids and the stuff they put "out there." They send an email or text to a friend, and assume that it's between the 2 of them. They don't realize that the info or pictures or text most probably are now "out there" for public consumption. (The discussion was sparked by an article in the NY Post about the phenomenom of "sexting"-- mostly teenage girls who send pictures of themselves in various stages of undress to boys, assuming that their beloved boyfriend will keep it to himself. Of course, as someone said, send that picture to one 14 year old boy, and you can assume that his 50 closest friends will be the next to see it, before they send it on.)

    A spin off of the discussion centered around facebook pages. One girl put something on her page that was restricted to her friends. The dean asked her how many people that was. The kids' response?? 200!!!


    We talked about how college admission officers and potential employers now routinely check online to see what they can find about candidates.

    And it made me think of this forum, and about all I know about some of the people here that they probably would NOT want a potential employer to see. I'm not talking about the mundane-- number of kids, number of years teaching type of stuff. But I've read some things about people here that they're probably hoping (or at least I hope they have the sense to hope) that a potential employer never sees. I know that I would have second thoughts about some people, based on some isolated posts-- and these people don't see the other bazillion posts that imply that you really ARE a wonderful teacher. One post that brags about the wrong thing, and you're "not the right fit" for a school.

    I just wanted to put out a word of caution. Please: YOU found this site. Please don't assume that others cannot!
     
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  3. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jan 28, 2009

    So true, Alice. And just remember that you don't have to be a member to see the Teacher Time Out section either.
     
  4. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

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    Jan 28, 2009

    Sound advice. I know I've put enough on here so that if a teacher who posts here regularly meets me or my kids, they won't have too hard a time figuring out it's me. I'll be able to deal with it fine (I don't think I've posted anything terrible or really terrifically gossip-worthy), but I'll certainly want to remain cognizant of it.

    edit: actually, I just realized I'm within the same city limits as Aliceacc daily. I'll have to keep a sharp eye out for math teachers. ;)
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jan 28, 2009

    Well, actually, I'm in the 'burbs of LI.

    I'm the one with the "heffalump"-- which means I've worn a blazer every single day since September's mastectomy.

    I think I'm pretty easy to spot :)
     
  6. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

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    Jan 28, 2009

    Great reminder.
     
  7. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Alice- such good advice which is also shared in other threads here related to dating, drinking, social activities, posting personal photos, complaints about jobs...Sorry to think though that you may just be "singing to the choir" in most cases and the other cases just don't get it...:mellow:
     
  8. deedee

    deedee Connoisseur

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    I got bit by that a while back so now I am very careful of what I post. I didnt post anyhting bad just asked a question about what I I thought was an inappropriate event of past employment.
     
  9. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I know. One of your posts on the subject prompted me to start this one.

    I know I'm preaching to the choir. The people involved tend to think "what I'm doing isn't THAT bad."

    News flash: with all the teachers looking for work, it doesn't have to be "that bad" to get you eliminated from consideration for the job you want.

    And they'll never have to tell you why you didn't get the job.
     
  10. Crzy_ArtTeacher

    Crzy_ArtTeacher Comrade

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    Jan 28, 2009

    As a young person myself who grew up in the age of computers... which evolved into myspace and facebook. I ALWAYS ere on the side of caution, and even when I was posting things about the poo thread, I was thankful that a couple of months or so ago I removed my state from my info. I don't want to be recognized by anyone no matter how silly a story is, it could Always be taken out of context. Anyone can see what I've previously posted and look at anything I've said on here.

    As far as I'm concerned you can never be too cautious, and you should always stay anonymous on the internet.
     
  11. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    Jan 28, 2009

    Oh great now I'm paranoid Alice.
     
  12. glen

    glen Companion

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    "One of the topics we discussed was kids and the stuff they put "out there." They send an email or text to a friend, and assume that it's between the 2 of them. They don't realize that the info or pictures or text most probably are now "out there" for public consumption. (The discussion was sparked by an article in the NY Post about the phenomenom of "sexting"-- mostly teenage girls who send pictures of themselves in various stages of undress to boys, assuming that their beloved boyfriend will keep it to himself. Of course, as someone said, send that picture to one 14 year old boy, and you can assume that his 50 closest friends will be the next to see it, before they send it on.)"

    This happened at my sons' schools just a couple of weeks ago. The pictures were forwarded via cell phones to kids in several grades and in at three different towns. The parents of at least one of the girls has threatened to press charges against any of the kids caught forwarding the pictures.
     
  13. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jan 28, 2009

    Me too, Jaime. I think it would pretty hard to track down exactly who I am, but if you put most of my posts together, you could figure out the general area in which I live.
     
  14. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jan 28, 2009

    I'm pretty easy to figure out.

    But I'm also pretty careful about what I post.
     
  15. Kangaroo22

    Kangaroo22 Virtuoso

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    I always worry about this, because I know how easy it is to figure out who someone is online, and I haven't made it that hard for others to figure out who I am if they know me. But because of that I always think of how what I'm posting comes off.
     
  16. TampaTeacher

    TampaTeacher Comrade

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    Yeah, sometimes I wish I hadn't put my city in my "name." But then, I don't want to change my name because I wouldn't want to deal with the confusion. I feel like I "know" some of the regulars around here, but if they changed their names, I wouldn't realize who they were anymore.

    Regardless, I always try to be careful about my posts.
     
  17. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    The sad thing is that in the fall, or next year, or the year after, they'll be changing jobs. And they'll apply and apply and apply, and never hear, and they'll wonder why.

    Or they'll get the interview, it will go wonderfully, and the job will go to someone who is a "better fit."

    Sometimes it's a valid reason. Sometimes it's code for "we don't want to hire someone who brags about public drunkenness, or about promiscuity or about drug use. We can find lots of qualified teachers who come without that baggage."

    And, no, that didn't apply to any one particular person. Just putting it out there.
     
  18. mom2ohc

    mom2ohc Habitué

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    Jan 28, 2009

    that is really great advice! I am really careful about what I say also, you just never know
     
  19. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Jan 28, 2009

    A long time ago, I started a thread here about MySpace & how it can affect your job (or potential job).

    I don't have kids yet, but I wouldn't want to post pictures of my kids online. God knows who can access them & use them for God knows what.

    I know this is kind of straying from the original topic, but I personally don't use MySpace or even text. I wish texting wasn't even invented. A lot of this new technology results in more harm than good. For example there was a huge Metrolink train crash in a city in my state a while back where numerous people died because the conductor was texting & not paying attention.

    With all this new technology comes the people who use it negatively. Just like the pedophiles & peeping toms who use camera phones to take pictures up ladies' skirts, etc.
     
  20. bballlady

    bballlady Rookie

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    Jan 28, 2009

    I totally agree with this post. I have always wondered why some people have "trashed" their previous jobs and the people they worked with. They have also openly stated how they would do personal things while on the job and have posted their pictures as well. I can only assume that they feel very secure in posting to this site.
     
  21. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    I always try to remember to behave the same way I'd behave if I was talking to someone in person . . . with other people watching.

    Works for me . . . at least most of the time. I slip up every now and then in real life, too. :whistle:

    Last year we had to teach a cyber-bullying unit to the kids because they were being AWFUL online. We had one incident after the other from things that started on MySpace or IM. I've been know to "rat out" kids to MySpace and/or their parents when they aren't behaving themselves. ;)
     
  22. Teaching Grace

    Teaching Grace Connoisseur

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    I was called on the carpet earlier this year because of being friends with another teacher at school on Facebook. I had posted school gossip (never mentioned the school name or anything) and her cousin told her mom who works at our school.. who told the principal. So she never actually saw my page or my comment but was told that it was slanderous towards the school. It was gossip but all facts and no slander. I was pretty upset but apologized and deleted the comment. Then I deleted all teachers that I knew within my county off of my friends list.
     
  23. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    I think most of us need a place to vent. We can't always vent to our co-workers for obvious reasons and our spouses/friends/family don't always understand. This place offers multiple perspectives and a soothing ear. This place offers something we can't get elsewhere and it seems seductively safe though it really isn't. I'm aware that many of my posts, though I changed my username and left off my state, can identify who I am to the right reader. Yet, I will confess that unfortunately it might take a hard lesson for me to abandon the very benefits this forum provides. I need it. I learn from it. I grow from it. I would not, however, want my coworkers to ever read it. That should be a red flag. It's certainly the one Alice is pointing out. Yet I don't know where else to go. For me, I'm also between careers so I don't always fit in with the ones doing the same job I'm doing and yet I don't fit in where I'm going quite yet either. I need to be able to express that somewhere. I have thought about this from time to time. It is not a new thought in my head (to heed my words) but I'm not sure I know where else to release the pent up frustrations and the questions I feel too stupid to ask. I really feel I learn more from here than I do from anywhere else. It comes in part because we ARE so open with each other. Yes, I would be fundamentally embarrassed to be found out and there could be other consequences. I hope I never learn that lesson Alice because I hate to give up the clear life-changing benefits I receive from mingling with others in such an honest way.
     
  24. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    Jan 29, 2009

    I'm all set as even when it looked like I used my last name, I did not I used my middlename.
     
  25. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I have a myspace page I have had students find it and ask to be friends, never! Mainly because my son leaves candid comments on my page :eek:
    I did change the wording from "I am handsome in an old fart kind of way" to "I am handsome in an old coot kind of way":lol:

    I list myself on Classmates as teacher
    I had to remove myself from the classmates at my last school, too many immature posts...:mad:

    Since I am retired I am not too concerned with employers reading myspace but if I was looking for a job I would delete the whole thing even without any bad stuff on it.:angel:

    I have read somewhere of an employer who would not hirer anyone with a myspace page! :eek:hmy:
     
  26. blessedhands

    blessedhands Comrade

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    Good reminder. I had to reevaluate the things I type, do, and say.
     
  27. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I think there's a huge difference between normal "venting" and saying something that could potentially cost you a job.
     
  28. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Alice, I am not as worried that I say inappropriate things as much as I worry that talking and venting about my coworkers could be potentially embarassing if they ever found out. Even if we don't talk about things we do outside of work and even if our language choices remain professional, just talking about our bosses, coworkers, parents and sometimes our students like we sometimes do is all cause for potential embarassment and in the right situation it could cost a job. Even though I remain a little defensive, it has crossed my mind more so lately because I havent had the best year.

    As for self-preservation--I do have some. I refuse to even get started, join or look at myspace and facebook pages. If I find it hard enough to heed these warnings on a professional site, over time I might lose sight of it and post something less credible than I want to represent on those types of websites.

    There have been a few times lately where I have taken some of those ventings and posted them via private messaging for feedback rather than post them publically. It isn't nearly as satisfying because I need multiple viewpoints to put things in the right perspective but this warning has been going off in my head lately that venting could be crippling if it were ever found.

    I try to remain professional on here but I do tend to wear my heart on my sleeves for all to see and I tend to not only write "books" but display all my pages. By the way, the ability to hide some of that and the ability to say things concisely without showing all my inner thoughts is something I sometimes think I need to work on in preparation for future parent conferences. Obviously I won't be practicing that skill with this post. ;)
     

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