Cleaning up social media could benefit future

By News4Jax.com Staff, webteam@wjxt.com
Published On: Apr 18 2014 09:45:45 PM EDT
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

When you put something on social media you're not immediately thinking of the effects it might have in the future. Careless posting to social media can cause some real harm to college-bound high school students.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy has been talking about the dangers of social media since phones could take pictures.

"When you hit that delete button it's there forever," said Worthy. "Employers, when you apply for a job, will check to see what kind of person you are, the pictures you post, pictures holding beer or guns or inappropriate dress, they're going to use those things against you and they legally can."

Worthy urges college-bound students to take heed. When students apply for college, administrators check social media and can dis-invite students based on things that they see if they are bad enough.

Michael Spears has taught digital seminars where he explains to students the effects of careless posting.

"A college that has two candidates with equal qualifications, if one has a positive digital footprint and one has a negative digital footprint, they won't take the one with the negative footprint," said Spears.

Some school systems have been proactive with teaching students how to be smart online. A digital seminar class is offered at Grosse Point School System. They suggested students in the 10th grade get proactive about cleaning up their digital footprints.

There are websites available that allow you to completely and permanently delete your social media accounts and start fresh, but experts said having no digital footprint at all is just as bad as having a negative social media reputation.

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