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By Regis L. Roberts

Pictures taken after a night of drunken debauchery may seem like something funny to post on Myspace to show to “friends” — Web friends or physical world friends — but who would have thought that they could come back to haunt someone looking for a job?

Employers are now looking at the social-networking sites and blogs of potential employees to make sure there is no dirty laundry aired.

“The Web is a space to embarrass yourself all over the world,” business Professor Thomas C. Friday said.

Delia Joseph, computer information systems professor, tells her students that once something is posted on the Internet, anyone can see that content.

Users conducting themselves in the proper manner on the Internet also goes for e-mails.

Friday said people should be aware of whom they are e-mailing.

For instance, e-mails to friends do not have to conform to a professional structure with proper grammar, but careful consideration about content and structure need to be taken with official e-mails to colleagues in the workplace, he said.

An e-mail to the boss should not contain smiley-face emoticons.

Content, Friday said, is something people should always be aware of, whether it is the content of an e-mail or Web site.

Joseph said she advises students not to use their work e-mail for class business because many employers pay close attention to what employees are using their e-mail for.

Students who are jumping into the world of the Internet, she said, think the Internet is a fun tool, and do not understand the repercussions of what they post. 

“Students don’t realize the full potential of the Internet,” she said.


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