Living With Regret

Our lives are displayed online for anyone to see. Many people use social media sites, like Facebook, to talk about their personal lives, opinions and also to vent about things that drive them crazy. Our social media profiles may not always display our ideal self. So, what happens when an employer looks for you online and sees your digital footprint? This is becoming extremely popular when an employer is looking at prospective employees. In a nationwide survey, the researches found that two out of five companies, or 39%, use social media sites to research job candidates.

Would you hire me?

fb cool

 I mean check out what a cool teen I was. Do I regret this? NO! I actually remember both these nights. These pictures are part of me growing up and I feel no shame in looking like a goof. I don’t think that I should be judged on my Facebook pictures of an adolescent me acting silly with my friends. These shouldn’t hinder my ability to get a job.

leo jacket

Is it fair for future or current employers to check out Facebook pages? To this I say no, unless it is relevant to the job. If you are going to be working in the public eye, such as in government, it would be good for the employer to see what goes on in your personal life and if it would impede your job performance. I believe that Facebook is kinda like a diary. It is a place to put personal things about your vacation, your friend’s birthday party or your thoughts on the really amazing movie you just saw. When employers look at Facebook pages, they are in a sense invading the perspective employee’s privacy. An employee is allowed to have a private life outside of work. As long as it won’t harm work performance, employers shouldn’t look at employee’s social media activity. This article discusses the issues that employers may face by searching for employees on social media sites, such as discrimination claims and breaking privacy laws.

Or an easy solution to protect yourself from employers checking you out online is to put your social media sites on private. This way they wouldn’t see anything that you’ve posted. This FOX article also talks about ways to prune your Facebook to display your best self to nosy employers. All of my sites are on private because I don’t want all my information public for anyone to look at. I’ve had my Facebook since Freshman year of high school. As you can see there is plenty of potentially embarrassing pictures on their! I don’t want an employer to judge me based on my 14 year old self doing silly poses with my best friends. I put those pictures up because I have found memories of those times and I like to take trips down memory lane every once in a while.

Since I don’t post a lot to my social media sites I can’t imagine my older self regretting any posts. I have gone on Myspace and felt a painful cringe at what was there, but I have warmer feelings toward my Facebook and Tumblr. Looking back in fifty years I will say, “Oh I was always easily excitable about things and my love of Harry Potter has not dwindled at all.” I grew up on social media and it is clear that I have evolved since 2009. I am not living with regret about things I’ve posted because they all mean something to me.

Will you look back in shame later in life?


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