Cyber-speak iz hard 2 read, IMHO

I can’t be the only one to witness Facebook statuses or Twitter updates that resemble some sort of foreign language or those racy photo posts from Halloween 2008.

Many employers find it not only challenging, but also completely unprofessional. According to a recent CareerBuilder survey, 45 percent of employers use social media sites to research potential new hires and red flag any candidates that use incorrect grammar or have inappropriate posts on their profiles.

According to Shelby County resident Adam Weiger of Lyons HR in Birmingham, social media users should always remain aware of what they’re posting.

“You have to remember someone’s watching. Especially on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, you don’t know who you could be connected to,” Weiger said.

Which means, you may have been disqualified from the running for a job if your social media profiles aren’t up to par. Some of you may be thinking, “but it’s my profile, I can post whatever or whenever I want,” and you’re correct. But be aware that you may be sharing more information with more people than you realize.

Facebook terms and conditions state: “you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook.” In other words, Facebook may access or even use your content at any point after you upload it to the site.

To better your chances of passing an employer’s social media research regulations, make your profile completely private to anyone who is not a friend. This prevents the majority of information from being viewed without your direct permission.

Also, don’t complain about your job on any social media forum. If you have a bad day, say you had a bad day, but leave out the part about your boss not giving you that promotion you wanted.

Manage your photos, especially those from your college days, we all know what’s in those red solo cups, you’re not fooling anybody. Make them private so only you and your fellow partygoers can witness your nights of debauchery.

Always use proper grammar. I can’t stress this enough. On social media it’s all about appearance, if you have two master’s degrees in biochemical engineering and rocket science but you regularly post updates using improper grammar and spelling, it’s detrimental to your communication skills in the eyes of an employer.

So the next time you post a rant, upload a photo of your dog or write on your buddy from high school’s wall, be aware that it could be public information and use proper grammar and punctuation.

Nicole Loggins is a staff writer for the Shelby County Reporter. She can be reached at 669-3131 ext. 40 or by email at nicole.loggins@shelbycountyreporter.com.