Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Employers use MySpace, too

People are still talking about the risks of personal information in your MySpace profile. This morning, I heard Stephen Viscusi interviewed on NPR's Morning Edition: Employers tap web for employee information. He moved right past any ethical question of whether employers should be snooping through people's personal lives online to the fact that they are. The ability to discover answers to questions they can't legally ask in an interview seems to be one of the perceived benefits of these online background checks. Viscusi mentions some examples of very personal information that shouldn't be part of the hiring decision but is available on many personal profiles.

Employers and recruiters may disagree on whether it's ethical to look for personal information, but at least some will use it. It's human nature to find those personal tidbits interesting. If you don't want employers to know it, don't put it on the web. Instead, leave a trail that enhances your brand.

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