Social Privacy 411 Series: Twitter

By Renee Revetta | Jun 18, 2010
More Articles by Renee

Some level of privacy must be considered if you’re active on social networks. But with some networks, the “openness” is the whole point. That said – private Twitter accounts have no place in the marketing world. Unless you have a private personal account just to use for family and friends etc, Twitter accounts should be open when it comes to networking, personal branding and general marketing usage. I continuously stumble upon private accounts where people are obviously *trying* to network, but failing miserably. Without an open account and sample of tweets, how are people supposed to decide if they want to follow you back? Regardless, there still are privacy issues to be discussed in this open network of Twitter.

First off, check your company’s social media policy – I bet you’ll find a few things about privacy in there. Are you allowed to be openly talking with clients on Twitter? How about RT’ing their content? Do you have to disclose that they’re a client? In a public network, these are certainly worthy questions.
Consider that all tweets will now be archived, not just online, but in the Library of Congress. So, be careful what you talk about on Twitter. I’m sure you’re all good people, but just so you’re aware for next Tax season – Mashable says “Trying to Evade Taxes? You Might Want to Avoid Social Media”:

They look for a wide range of publicly posted personal financially-related information including relocation announcements, earnings boasts, gig announcements and more.

As if that isn’t big enough news on its own – the implications of this are huge. What about speeding tickets, and other traffic violations? Think it will ever get to that point? I’m not positive about that just due to the amount of resources necessary, but I can tell you I never thought the IRS would be searching Facebook and Twitter for tax evasion. So before tweeting something you might regret, remember that tweet (even if it’s deleted) won’t actually completely disappear…um ever. Again a reminder of The Library of Congress’ announcement tweet:

Library to acquire ENTIRE Twitter archive — ALL public tweets, ever, since March 2006! Details to follow.

And as summer vacations pop up, consider not blatantly tweeting that you’re away from home for the weekend, week or however long. Just looking out for you all. Have questions? Feel free to find me on Twitter @ReneeRevetta.

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