PAUSE BEFORE YOU POST
Sometimes Forever is Bad!
I Wish I Could Take That Back!
Think Before You Post
Whether you are interacting on the internet with family, friends, or the school community, once you post something on the Internet you can't later say, "never mind."
It may seem funny or harmless but it could really hurt someone including you. Taking just a few extra minutes to make sure you're post won't hurt you or someone else is a no-brainer.
This will be funny.
You're about to post. You think, "This is so great everyone will think this is hilarious."
But wait a second.
Will you get labeled by this? What about next week when you're trying out for the team, or hanging out with friends will it still be funny? Is someone going to get hurt by this?
What Harm Can a Post Really Do?
Think it's funny to joke around about driving drunk? The authorities don't. An Oregon teen was arrested after posting on Facebook that he drove drunk and side swiped some cars. Jacob Cox-Brown says he meant it as a joke, but some did not find his message funny and shared it with police. You can read his story here and watch the news coverage below.
30-year-old Lindsey Stone thought the picture she posted on her Facebook page was funny. It is an image of Stone pretending to shout and pointing her middle finger as she stands next to a sign that reads” Silence and Respect” taken at Arlington National Cemetery near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. She and her friend who took the picture were fired by their employer. You can read more here or watch the video below to learn more.
Labeled a Racist
A Tumblr account set up to capture reactions of Hunger Games movie fans discovered that many viewers shared racist remarks in reference to the casting for the movie. While posts and accounts may have been promptly deleted, a simple Google search can forever bring up stories like this article from Jezebel that associates individuals with comments they may forever regret. Maggie's (whose Tweet is shared here) digital profile will do little to impress college admissions counselors or employers.
Consider This Before You Post
Be Responsible for Other's Privacy
Not only should you worry about your own privacy. It is important that you consider the privacy of others. This poster from Common Sense Media will help you do that.
Consider Your Audience
Teachers & Students
Use proper grammar. Do not tag anything (i.e. posts, photos, videos) without permission of the staff member responsible for the site.
Friends & Family
Communicate with friends and family using personal accounts (i.e. personal email) and platforms (i.e. Facebook, Instagram) for personal reasons. In cases where school staff or students are also considered your friend or family, check with a parent or guardian to ensure connecting on personal accounts makes sense.
Your writing can be relaxed, similar to your talking or texting style but remember, anything digitally posted can be captured and shared. Know your privacy settings.
You have no right to privacy from teachers and administrators on anything you do for school-related purposes. When using school internet, accounts, platforms, or devices and you must abide by the Internet Acceptable Use and Safety Policy.
This includes the following prohibited behaviors:
- Causing harm to others or damaging property
- Gaining or attempting to gain unauthorized access to school systems
- Using school systems for commercial purposes (i.e. financial gain, business activities)
- Engaging in criminal or unlawful activities
Personal social media use, including off-hours use, has the potential to result in disruption at school and/or the workplace, and can be in violation of policies, laws, and regulations.
- Have you ever posted or witnessed a post that could be hurtful or embarrassing or might result in someone questioning your character?
- What are some ways to avoid this or address others who are impulsive posters?
Did you know?
- The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) prohibits school officials from disclosing personally identifiable information from education records of students & families to third parties without parental consent.
- Parents are primarily responsible for transmitting their particular set of family values to their children, and discussing with their children what material is and is not acceptable for their children to access through the Department’s Internet Systems.
- Parents are exclusively responsible for monitoring their children's use of the Internet when the Department’s Internet Systems are accessed from home or a non-school location.
- Schools should notify parents on an annual basis if their child is invited to participate in professional social media activities. If access to a social media site will extend beyond individuals within the Department or Department school officials, then parent consent is required. Parents who have questions or concerns about their child's use of social media for school purposes should contact the school for more information.
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