It’s all about building a real digital presence, an online reputation that embraces the best practices of internet safety - building an online presence that lets you take advantage of the internet and not let the internet take advantage of you.
It’s just like life, it requires discipline to build it properly and yet you can still have the best fun.
Teenagers need to realise that over the next 10 years they’ll post more than over the rest of their lives and that it’s nearly impossible to reverse their internet impression over the following years.
Find your own style, don’t post simply to be popular, copied or shared especially if it isn’t you. That doesn’t suit everyone. It’s not a race to 5,000 followers, choose your friends wisely, don’t accept all friend requests.
It’s called social media not stranger media, they are meant to be your friends in the first place. Social media is called ‘social' for a reason, it’s intended to be friendly, social and positive - not a platform for meanness, bullying and fakery.
Be real, be nice, be yourself. If you have nothing to post, don’t post.
Furthermore, if you don’t like content or the nature of a message just received, take a breath before responding, think, take your time. Remember it’s social media not unsocial media.
There’s no substitute for knowing what your online presence says. Some of this you’ll know, because you created it! However, an online reputation is a two-way street. Sit down one day, see if what you have posted over the last 5 years would pass the ‘Grandmother test’. Would your Granny be impressed or annoyed, upset, that’s the test. If you are shocked yourself, it’s bad.
Do you allow comments, if so what do they say?. Remember it’s how the world see who you are. If there are negative comments, read them, consider deleting them.
When you are Teenager nothing matters to you but it does to others, you are creating your digital imprint on the internet now, building your online reputation, your digital presence. All the nights out, the fake tan, short skirts, all the flesh, all the tattoo’s, the booze fueled fun, middle fingers to the world. It’s natural for us to share this online with friends. But is this all you share, is there anything else you could post to paint another picture of you, creating a better impression.
It’s important to know that others including your Teachers, Coaches, Employers, Parents, Colleges will be looking to get an insight into you. 500 nights out and nothing else, is that it? Won’t impress the coach, employer, family, potential partners. Probably not the picture you want to paint of yourself.
Social media — Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat — influence your online reputation. Consider the balance and making your presence online balanced.
Try keeping profanities to a absolute minimum or better yet don’t. ‘F*** you ma bi**h, f***i*g gre8t nite, all the bi***es were f***ed up etc, etc”. Once or very occasionally we can ignore but NOT every week-end. Learn to hashtag carefully, remember Google records your 500 #Bitch hashtags monthly especially when kids can post easily over 5,000 times monthly.
Post several times a week on social media not just Friday, Saturday, Sunday. Take advantage of the internet don’t let it take advantage of you.
Remember Google, Social Media forgets nothing, they see and keep everything. Google can’t forgive or forget, (despite your right to be forgotten) it’s only a computer that’s all. Remember Google has no compassion, soul, has no kindness and can’t see the good in you. It’s just a computer designed to make money for Google, that’s it.
You need to take care of business because Google is, it controls mobile phone operating systems, 95% plus of all European searches. The same applies to Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram.
Older Teenagers need to realise that summer jobs, college admission, babysitting jobs, team selection, Coaches, first real job applications and interviews will be affected by their online reputation. Do you think that the coach of the U18s soccer team going for the cup isn’t interested in your online behaviours.
That’s the just the beginning, all employers, banks, colleges check your social profile prior to meeting you, because they can and it’s the easiest, best way to see if you are reliable. In our internet safety talks to 16,17,18,19 years olds we make this very plain indeed with examples of real impact. One on the biggest parts of internet safety is to ensure that your online reputation is properly nurtured.
It’s literally priceless, a good online reputation will give you chances, and maybe win you a job that your interview did not. It’s much easier to forgive a poor interview, write off to being nervous than a lousy online presence. A great online reputation will open doors all your life.
Our internet safety talks for kids help schools, parents and their children understand the importance of parental control, social media, online behaviour, gaming and cyberbullying.
Fore more information about our internet safety talks for kids, teens and seniors - please contact us.
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