This is part two of an ongoing GirlGuidesCANblog series to provide GGC Members, volunteers, and parents with a better understanding of social media issues and best practices.
Part 1: GGC’s online strategy
Part 2: Girl Guides Online…Now and Forever
Part 3: Guiding Principles for Facebook
Part 4: Pictures Say a Thousand Words… and Then Some
Part 5: Girl Guide Tweets and Tweeps
Part 6: Guiding Online Searches
A few months back I received an email to my work mailbox. It was the bio of a young Canadian woman written for a dating site. Her profile wasn’t in itself offensive or weird, but the fact that my Google Alert had ensnared it in its net caught me off guard. After all, the alert was set up to capture news and online articles with the words “Girl Guides of Canada”, and nothing more. However, after reading through her information (it was, after all, in MY email box), I realized that I had received the woman’s ‘personal ad’ because she had stated that she enjoyed ‘volunteering and spending time with her GGC girls’. No laws broken or misconduct going on here. She was simply sharing a fact about her commitment to volunteerism. Yet, I am sure that the woman would likely be a little freaked out to know that she – and her profile, were both being ‘picked up’!
This made me think about the importance of emphasizing that what goes online, stays online – likely forever. Perfect example: check out an archive photo I found online of GGC’s website from 1996 (publically-accessed archives, no laws broken here to locate this). Even our webmaster was shocked to see that this still existed!
What we put out there in the Twitter-verse, on the blogosphere, or Facebook-land, can likely be found by anyone, from anywhere and retrieved at a later date, long after you believe that it has been completely erased from existence. This isn’t cause for alarm, but a need for awareness. After all, we want to be just as courageous, confident and resourceful online as we are off.