Costly Pitfalls in the social media..Beware

By
Real Estate Agent with Northwood Realty Services

How many times have we read about Social Media and it's advantages?

How many times have we blogged about the potential liability of putting ourselves on the line with transparency about our personal views and opinions?

I am going to suggest again for the " Nay Sayers "  and the " Freedom of Speech  in blogging " enthusiast,... that they read the article written by Walt Baczkowski,  President of the Metropolitan Consolidated Association of Realtors

on the rismedia website

Walt warns to use the social media to your advantage iceberg

but beware of the pitfalls.

This perspective is worth reading

and evaluating how we blog and

how we comment.

Walt has covered many

thoughts to consider.

 

He stated ...I quote

" colleges, prospective employers and law enforcement regular check the Web to find out more about you.

So what are they learning?  Would you provide this information if you were in a conversation with them?

What image or impression is your social media conveying ?

 

We have blogged and commented on this subject many times ...in reading Walt's  perspective and his advice to re-check our profiles, our comments, our opinions in our blogs, the thought  crossed my mind .......

Have we  become to complacent, too comfortable with our surroundings and each other? 

There is something about blogging that creates a protective barrier that the conversation is among friends, colleagues a close knit group....It is true...we build relationships with others within our industry our friends on the social pages on the Internet.....but.........

It is wise to remember Walt's  comment.......

 

                      " Remember that once the information is posted on the Web, it is in the wind."

 

How descriptive and visual is that statement?  Bloggers need to heed the warning of the " Pitfalls ".

Social network has exploded in our industry..we just need to keep it in check ...

We don't need to be a casualty in the explosion.

 

Walt also makes a point of " cyber-bullying "  ( that could be a post all of it's own ) ...we know it exist.

He mentioned the in May, NAR established Policy regarding the posting of negative comments regarding other Realtors.

There are rating sites already in existence  such angieslist.

These sites could control and monitor the very workings of social networking.

What impact will it have on us?.....I guess we patiently wait.

..No doubt  we will  be hearing  more about these rating sites .from NAR........This is just the tip of the iceberg.

What is below the surface is not yet visible, only as a warning of caution to all in social networking.

 

 

*Photo credit to Microsoft photo

* Walt Baczkowski president of the Metropolitan perspective can be read in it's entirety in RISMEDIA Real Estate

  July 2009 edition magazine or follow the link to www.rismedia.com



 

 


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Rainmaker
1,129,104
Li Read
Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring) - Salt Spring Island, BC
Caring expertise...knowledge for you!

Very thoughtful...thanks for the timely "alerts".

Jul 23, 2009 10:02 PM #21
Rainer
16,787
Margaret Barnes
Windermere Investors Marketplace, Jacksonville, Oregon - Jacksonville, OR
ABR, GRI, Jacksonville, Oregon

Hello June,

Thanks for the timely word of caution, as I am beginning my venture into this social media world.

Jul 23, 2009 11:15 PM #22
Rainmaker
253,266
Troy Erickson
Diverse Solutions Realty www.ChandlerRealEstate.weebly.com - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

June - Sometimes I am amazed at what I see about people on the internet.  It seems as though they don't really care about their image, or think it's cool to see them partying or worse.  I personally would like to leave some of my life private.

Jul 24, 2009 12:29 AM #23
Ambassador
1,910,038
Nestor & Katerina Gasset
International Properties and Investments LLC - Wellington, FL
Realtors, Wellington Florida Homes For Sale

June- I am still trying to figure out how this 'once you post it is there forever' thing works. I hear it all the time but I don't find that to be the case unless someone prints out the post or the comment. If you go and delete a post and then try to find it, you get, 'this page can not be displayed'. Is there some big brother cyber safe where they keep everything tha was ever written online?

I say to them; google my name anytime!

Jul 24, 2009 02:30 AM #24
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Nestor And KAterina.  I too hear it all the time.  Someone knows more than I do about blogging , that is for sure. 

I tend to follow the advice of the experts. " If they say it is a forever thing " and they know what they are talking about than I am not about to test the waters of something I have no  expertise about.  Maybe someone hear can dispel or confirm

what many have said. 

You brought up a [point of interest though...are they talking about blogs that have been posted and submitted only or are they talking about comments and blogs that have been submitted then deleted.  Is it too late after the delete? Has it already been embedded somewhere beyond being deleted.  I think about what happened to me on facebook..I typed my name wrong...and I can not change it.....Is this  blog and delete stuff to the point of no return?

  I don't know.

The reason I posted this blog is to link to Walt  Baczkowski perspective in the Rismedia magazine.  I felt it timely and

excellent advice  that I felt would be appreciated.  Thanks so much for your comment.

Jul 24, 2009 02:57 AM #25
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Troy  I think we form a mindset close knit relationships and become too relaxed in what we say by blogging and how we respond.  AS Katerina said above' Google my name anytime "   We have to become so comfortable with how we conduct our blogging and what we feel works for us, that we can confidently say  " Google me "

I continually go back to Walt's article where he says " Consider your postings, blog, and profile as if you were a prospective customer or college recruiter.  What message do you think they would receive ?

Just as a mention ..our office mamager was telling us her nephew lest a message on her facebook page that she felt was not appropriate. She called him and warned him, consumers, clients and friends could be offended by the comment and she din't want her facebook page to cause dis-comfort to viewers visiting.  ......She took action to prevent a Pitfall

Jul 24, 2009 03:10 AM #26
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Thanks everyone for your interest in this subject...really... it is the tip of the iceberg and we really don't see the danger below the surface.  Any sharing of thoughts will be valuable in determining how and what we say on the Internet.

Myrl  Jeffcoat emailed me on this blog and continues the subject with an excellent blog and her opinion on the subject of mining in blogging and avoiding the risk.

Jul 24, 2009 03:18 AM #27
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Margaret,  Social networking is a fascinating world with many advantages...just some common sense and caution is needed.  Glad you stopped by. Thanks

Jul 24, 2009 03:39 AM #28
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Li thanks for the visit ..will visit you soon 

Jul 24, 2009 03:42 AM #29
Rainmaker
996,143
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

June:  I just cannot imagine anyone being so stupid or so unaware that they would put such damning information on one of their internet "pages"... such information that could so easily come back and bite them in the butt.  What were they thinking ?  Well... that's just it... they weren't.

Oh... the risks one takes for their fifteen minutes of "fame."  It can turn into an endless nightmare.

Jul 24, 2009 05:02 AM #30
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Karen Anne.  I agree..sometimes I think they don't realize how many viewers actually could get hold of what they read.

The Internet is far from perfection.  The other day I was searching a found a sketchy profile of mine only the address had me from Portland Oregon,  my picture, my company, my phone but the location was Portland..Kinda scary

Jul 24, 2009 06:58 AM #31
Rainmaker
1,170,739
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

@ Nestor, Katerina and Karen - I think for the most part what we put here on ActiveRain is not in the "forever" world of the the internet, like internet newsgroups and many blogs may be.  For example, on ActiveRain, we have an opportunity to delete any blogs or comments we later have second thoughts about.  BUT, some social media (like Google Newsgroups) archive your posts forever and ever!

Jul 24, 2009 09:12 AM #32
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Myrl   Thanks for the explanation..it certainly clears up some mis-conceptions.  When you think about how everyone is concerned about privacy, confidential information being protected not only in real estate but banks, doctors, hospital records

in fact almost everything that isn't  of public record...it will just be a matter of time before bloggers become a target.

Like shooting ducks in a barrel. ( in some situations )

I know when I covered an event for a church I was told  NOT to post individual photos of people working in the kitchen or in a booth UNLESS I have permission.  If it was someone I did not know,  they suggested getting written approval to post on the Internet.  The city newspaper follows the same process.  I guess it  is called cover your butt!

Jul 24, 2009 11:06 AM #33
Rainmaker
134,027
Janie Coffey
One Sotheby's International Realty - Coral Gables, FL
GRI - Miami Real Estate

when I realized that twitter posts (every single one!) sitck around forever, and having a fairly unique name, I realized quickly you can't feel that what you say will just disappear into the twitterstrem in 15 sec, it stays around, and around and anround...

Jul 25, 2009 08:22 AM #34
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Janie

You are right >>Isn't it like an e-mail?  Once you hit the SEND button...what you say is it...it goes..can cause complicated problems and come back to haunt you.?  isn't it funny how a potential for harm can go un noticed and treated so casually. 

Who knows what and where a person's life will be in the next few years and what they voice today may not be the voice they have in later years.  We change, mentally, physically and certainly our perspective and opinions can change in an instant.  Not to be negative..just a caution call that needs to be realized..thanks for the comment.

Someone powerful as a social network as Active Rain has a disclaimer on their network.  Certainly a  broad message to the members as to the pitfalls is necessary...we are the one's at risk..not the social networks. In fact I may turn this into another blog and include your comment Thanks Janie

Jul 25, 2009 09:20 AM #35
Ambassador
1,910,038
Nestor & Katerina Gasset
International Properties and Investments LLC - Wellington, FL
Realtors, Wellington Florida Homes For Sale

June- I understand. The facebook thing, you could just delete your entire profile and then it would be gone. I suppose it could be ordered by some court to be dug up somehow in some data back up database. 

Janie- it would be hard pressed and a lot of work to dig up a certain tweet even it is at one time was indexed by google.

June- I think that he is talking about like when people are out job hunting or getting a promotion at work and stuff like partying and doing stupid stuff and then puttting it online. But even my daughters have done stupid stuff and then deleted it and it can now NOT be found anywhere online. You would also have to know what to search for.

I am not trying to be difficult, I suppose I am just a proponant of free speach and see it being squelched at every turn that I have a difficult time accepting that I should keep my mouth shut :) Katerina

Jul 27, 2009 12:46 AM #36
Rainmaker
198,819
R.E. Renée Hoover, Salesperson
Century 21 Geba Realty, Milford, PA - Milford, PA
Poconos, Pike, Wayne, Monroe Counties, PA

Great post - I've written one similar and emphasizing legal implications and potential ramifications.

Jul 27, 2009 05:44 AM #37
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Katerina ,  Yes the job hunting thing has a lot to do with it. 

Sometimes we hear in the media how disk hard drives can be searched and it suggest privacy concerns. 

I agree, about freedom of speech. 

 In our industry  we often  find ourselves having to walk on eggs, in the name of cover your butt.  As I write this thought comes to mind about using certain words in advertising like a short walk, beautiful sight...every.one is looking at protecting someone's  interest ..not that this is wrong but it's schematics how can it cause harm or be detrimental

Social network is new, it has exploded and someone out there will figure out how to capitalize on our right to freedom.

Saying this,... we can't live in a glass bubble either ...so it just leaves us cautiously rolling with the punches.

BTW   It never entered my mind you were beoing difficult.  If we aren't proponants to what we believe in ...then what would that say about our character   Thanks for the comments

Jul 27, 2009 06:50 AM #38
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

Hi Renee Thanks for the visit and I will check out your blog and be back. 

I am interested in what evolves from all the legal and potential ramifications.  Wouldn't it just be a kick in the head after finding the platform of social networking that seems to offer it all to us in the real estate industry, only to find out we are setting ourselves up for a potential legal problems.

Like Nestor and Katerina said above about their daughter deleting stupid stuff off their pages. Most young kids think in the moment and with social network relatively new aren't thinking down the line with college, work place, marriage and the fact their actions and belief systems will change as they get older...of course sometimes they can hit the delete button....but can it be traced or found?  As someone said , as for us doing this to promote our  business , we just can't say stupid things and suggest profanity...for sure our customers will base their opinions on us by how we blog and comment..

 

 

Jul 27, 2009 07:04 AM #39
Rainmaker
171,907
June Lewis
Northwood Realty Services - New Castle, PA
Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571

HI Renee   Thanks for letting me know about your blog.  I missed it, ..why am I surprised?  There should be a warning sign , red flag or a buzzer when blogs are posted that could make a difference to someones future....( I think it use to be called a feature )

.like Stop....read this..you just might want to think twice about how, what and what you are doing.

....You wrote an excellent blog, not only your wise opinion but because you were a paralegal , you have expert experiences and documentation on what already has happened and what to avoid.  I hope any future comments and anyone following this thread will check out your link below.  Thank you for the advice.  The more we shout out " Watch how you say it " the safer it will be for all members on social networking.  Thanks for doing your share.  BTW I love your little corner of Pennsylvania. I am going to gather all the warning blogs on the legal pitfall and ramifications and link them in one blog

maybe this might bring more attention to a subject that needs to be shared to other members  here in the rain( at least )

This exposure is not to be negative or controversial...just a warning to use business common sense.

http://activerain.com/blogsview/1165932/the-poconos-4-seasons-of-fun-jack-frost-big-boulder-18th-annual-pocono-blues-festival

Jul 27, 2009 07:29 AM #40
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Rainmaker
171,907

June Lewis

Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571
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