Social media has undoubtedly taken over much of our lives, with the invention of smartphones you’d be hard pressed to find a Dean College student that isn’t updating the world of their day to day activities through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or something. However, many avid users of these sites forget that not everything they post stays where they posted it. Here’s two ways Social Media was used in a way that was less than preferred, teaching us all that we need to keep a close eye on the way we represent and protect ourselves online.
1. Carly McKinney- 23 Year old Carly Mckinney, a middle school teacher in Aurora, CO. Was recently fired after a number of her tweets became public. Using a protected account on what she assumed would remain a private twitter page, McKinney tweeted inappropriate photos of herself. She even admitted to wrong doing while on the job in this tweet:
“Watching a drug bust go down in the parking lot. It’s funny cuz I have weed in my car in the staff parking lot.”
Needless to say, McKinney’s private account didn’t remain private for long. Those tweets, photos and other posts are now linked to hundreds of online articles retelling her unfortunate story. McKinney has her twitter to thank for her unemployment and national humiliation.
2. Humans of New York Vs. DKNY – Brandon Stanton is the man behind the increasingly popular photo blog Humans of New York (can be found on both Tumblr and Facebook.) Stanton, who spends parts of his days walking around NYC and taking artsy picture of its inhabitants then posts the photos to his blog and includes a short story about or quotation from the photos subject. Stanton’s pages are followed by well over 500,000 fans. Over this past weekend, Stanton was informed by a follower that over 300 of his pictures were on display in a DKNY store over in Bangkok. On display, without permission from Stanton at all, he explained the situation more in this Facebook post.
“I was approached by a representative of who asked to purchase 300 of my photos to hang in their store windows “around the world.” They offered me $15,000. A friend in the industry told me that $50 per photo was not nearly enough to receive from a company with hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue. So I asked for more money. They said “no.” Today, a fan sent me a photo from a DKNY store in Bangkok. The window is full of my photos. These photos were used without my knowledge, and without compensation.”
Stanton’s post calling out this world-famous company quickly received over 40,000 likes and shares off of his HONY Facebook alone, creating a backlash of nasty status’ and posts on DKNY’s own Facebook page slandering the company. Within 2 hours of the post going public, DKNY has received over 10,000 hateful comments on their own Facebook page shaming the company for their blatant disrespect of artists along with copyright infringement and theft. Social Media was helpful in exposing this scam, but did nothing to help DKNY protect themselves or gain any respect from the companies dwindling fans when nearly 10 hours later they had yet to respond to the accusations.
So what can we learn from these mistakes? Rule number one is try and keep your social media sites kosher. Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want your mom, grandmother or boss to see. I know this can be challenging, and it is for me as well, but it can be something we strive to improve upon over our college years. Use your sites to be informative, funny and whatever else you want to be, but think twice before you click! Also, don’t assume that because you declare ownership over creative media online that it’s safe from scammers. Be sure to protect your creations with copyrighting, etc!
On a completely unrelated note: Come see Dean’s College’s school of the Arts presentation of “Romeo and Juliet” this week and weekend! Tickets can be purchased at http://www.dean.edu/romeoandjuliet. This is a show you seriously don’t want to miss. Plus you might just happen to see some familiar bloggers faces
See you next time!