These days, embarrassing photos, stories and outright violations of privacy are so common that once the initial shock wears off, the online community offers a collective shrug. Many tech pundits and journalists then proffer two perfunctory statements -- this kind of thing happens to everyone eventually, and thanks to the Internet and ubiquitous camera technology, privacy doesn't really exist anymore.
These kinds of over-generalized statements simply aren't entirely true. The more content you blast onto the Internet, the more pieces of your personal puzzle you're offering to complete strangers.
In other words, don't throw your arms up in exasperation and totally give up on the idea of controlling your online image. With a little personal restraint and friends who respect your efforts to manage your online reputation, you can keep damage to a minimum and really put a shine on your expertise in the process.
For more on professional behavior and the Internet, read on to the next page.
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- Brandt, Andrew. "How to Protect Your Online Passwords." PC World. Jan. 26, 2009. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.pcworld.com/article/157816/how_to_protect_your_online_passwords.html
- Carlson, Nicholas. "'Embarrasing and Damaging' Zuckerberg Ims Confirmed by Zuckerberg, The New Yorker." BusinessInsider.com. Sept. 13, 2010. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.businessinsider.com/embarrassing-and-damaging-zuckerberg-ims-confirmed-by-zuckerberg-the-new-yorker-2010-9
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- Garner, Jayne and O'Sullivan, Helen. "Facebook and the Professional Behaviours of Undergraduate Medical Student." Wiley Online Library. May 19, 2010. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1743-498X.2010.00356.x/full
- Gunn, Eileen, P. "8 Ways to Buff Your Professional Image -- Online." U.S. News and World Report. Oct. 24, 2007. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://money.usnews.com/money/careers/articles/2007/10/24/8-ways-to-buff-your-professional-image--online.html
- Microsoft.com. "Research Shows Online Reputation Matters." December 2009. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.microsoft.com/privacy/dpd/research.aspx
- Pattison, Kermit. "Managing on Online Reputation." The New York Times. July 30, 2009. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/30/business/smallbusiness/30reputation.html
- Ramel, David. "Can Your Online Past Come Back to Haunt You?" Computerworld. May 7, 2009. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9132615/Can_your_online_past_come_back_to_haunt_you_
- Rosen, Jeffery. "The Web Means the End of Forgetting." The New York Times. July 21, 2010. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/25/magazine/25privacy-t2.html
- Schonfeld, Erick. "Kleiner and Bessemer Put $8.65 Million into Reputation Defender." TechCrunch.com. Jan. 12, 2010. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://techcrunch.com/2010/01/12/reputationdefender-kleiner-bessemer-8-65-million/
- Stone, Brad. "Viruses that Leave Victims Red in the Facebook." The New York Times. Dec. 14, 2009. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/14/technology/internet/14virus.html
- Trenholm, Richard. "Google Boss Solves Embarrassing Facebook Photos: Change Your Name." CnetUK. Aug. 18, 2010. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://crave.cnet.co.uk/software/google-boss-solves-embarrassing-facebook-photos-change-your-name-50000385/
- Zetter, Kim. "Palin E-mail Hacker Says it Was Easy." Wired. Sept. 18, 2008. (Sept. 23, 2010)http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2008/09/palin-e-mail-ha/
A study found workers in open offices were so self conscious about their images they changed the way they dressed. Find out more at HowStuffWorks.