Some teens who want to be what they deem “popular” and “cool”, boast, exaggerate and sometimes present an amazing image of themselves on Facebook for their thousands of “cool” friends (that they probably don’t know in real life).“21% of kidsclaim they make friends with people they don’t know on social networks to appear to have more friends”
If they also think going to college is “cool” or getting a job is “cool” then they may want to get real about their Facebook pages. According to Forbes magazine “The number of college recruiters vetting potential candidates via Facebookhas quadrupled in the last year. “Presenting a positive image online is pretty important in today’s internet world. Talking to your teen about what they’re posting for the world to see in addition to employers and college administrators is very important. Telling your child that putting photos out there on Facebook from a party last night where they got drunk and did all kinds of embarrassing things, even though they are not legally able to drink yet, to show the world how fun and cool they are is a bad idea. What would a college admissions officer think about a post like that? Poor judgement, at the least.
Some parents and teens may say that colleges and employers checking out their Facebook page is an invasion of privacy. That may be true, but it’s also true that nothing about the internet is private and the reality is colleges and employers will continue to check Facebook activity whether you think it’s an invasion of privacy or not. So if your child or teen is thinking about college and a job after college, then you need to teach them to think about who will see their pictures and posts, and the image they are presenting in the online world. Even better, check as a parent yourself occasionally on your child’s computer social networking activity to make sure that your idea of positive image and your teens idea of positive image are the same. Isn’t it better that you see what your child is posting before a college or employer does?