Friday, October 18, 2013

Knowing who your friends are…

Should you be "friends" with everyone on your social media accounts?

By Cassie Rowan

I grew up in a time, where in order to sign up for Facebook, you had to have an email address associated with a college or university… yes, this means I didn’t have a Facebook account until June of my senior year in high school, when the university I planned on attending assigned me an email address. I was so excited to finally be able to join Facebook. 

I got wrapped up in the initial “friending” everyone I had gone to high school with and all those future friends I would have at college. After a few months, I realized I was “friends” with a lot of strangers; a lot of people I had never spoken with on a regular basis. I also realized that by having them as friends, I was sharing information with them. So, I went through my “friends” list and “un-friended” anyone I didn’t have regular contact with or anyone I had not known for what felt like forever. 

My point is, think about whom you are “friending” or who and how you are connecting, not just on Facebook, but on all social media sites. When it comes to social media, many of us think that the more friends we have, the better. Sometimes, quality overrides quantity.  Also, think about the content you are posting… my philosophy of posting to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. is "If I wouldn’t share it with my grandmother, then I shouldn’t share it on social media.”
REMEMBER, when you post something, all those friends, see what you post and know that much more about you!

NOTE:  This week Facebook announced that they are relaxing some of its previous security provisions for minors who use Facebook.  GSNC encourages all Facebook users to check their settings, understand what info is being shared with whom and make adjustments as needed.  Parents should provide guidance and monitoring to ensure that their children--including high schoolers -- are safe. 

View information on Facebook's privacy settings for teens>>

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