If you publish something online, chances are that anyone with minimal skills can find it. That makes it important for you to know these four things that you’re not aware of that could affect your online reputation.
1. Your Facebook Posts Are More Public Than You Think
Facebook gives you certain privacy options, but none of them make your comments completely private. Even if you set your profile to the highest level of security, which won’t let people see anything about you when they visit your profile page (unless they’re your friends), someone can still find comments that you post on someone else’s page.
That means your comments are there for the world to see. You also don’t have total control over images of you. If a friend posts pictures of you on her page, then other people can see them. Your friend can even tag you, making it easy for anyone to search for images of you.
If you don’t want Facebook posts and pictures to cause you problems, your best bet is to avoid social media. Your second-best option is to scrutinize everything you post and ask your friends to respect your privacy.
2. Websites Can Post Information About Your Business
Business owners might not realize that a lot of information is available to the public. Websites like Yelp and Google Places can create pages for your business without your permission. Some of these sites let people post comments about you and your business. You don’t have any control over this information.
Using services however, can help you reduce negative comments. You can’t control everything on the Internet, but you can influence how people see and interpret things about you and your business.
3. Your Blog Posts Aren’t Gone When You Delete Them
In the heat of the moment, you might post something on your blog that compromises your online reputation. A few minutes later, after you have cooled off, you realize that your post was a really stupid thing to do. You delete it before anyone has even read it. No harm, no foul, right?
Not necessarily. Your blog posts can stay cached for an unspecified amount of time. When you delete a post, you can often still find the cached version of it, leaving you open to attack.
You can solve this problem by thinking before you post. Never publish anything on your blog while you’re upset. You can always save it for later. If you decide to publish it the next day, then you can do it rationally.
4. Your Tweets Can Spread Quickly
Perhaps you only have a few people following you on Twitter. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that this means you can tweet any asinine opinion. Ridiculous tweets rarely stay between friends.
If someone retweets your message, then it can spread virally. That’s not the kind of popularity you want after making an off-color remark that could damage your reputation.
How will you act differently now that you know they can impact your online reputation?