Benefits and Pitfalls of Social Media
How You Should Be Cautious On Social Media
Over 900 high school students piled into the auditorium of Don Bosco Prep in Ramsey, NJ to listen to a dynamic, entertaining and at times humorous presentation by Rico Correia, President of Centaur Consulting. The room buzzed as the students were about to embark on a journey through cyberspace. The subject, “The Benefits and Pitfalls of Social Media.” The concerns of teachers, administrators and parents prompted the progressive educational institution to seek out a professional who could help the students better understand what is at stake in the world of social media.
Rico, a leading Sports Image Consultant and motivational speaker who continues to assist professional athletes in NHL, MLS, NBA, and MLB began by asking all the students who engage in social media to raise their hands. Over 90% put their hands up. His next question brought nervous laughter and only 3 hands. “How many of you have EVER read the terms and conditions of what you were agreeing to?” Do you know what you have agreed to? Do you know who is reading your posts and tweets and looking at your pictures? Suddenly the room fell silent. Rico continued, “67% of college admissions people and over 80 % of employers. Friends of your friends and tons of people that you don’t even know are watching. They know where you live, who your friends are, when you are going on vacation. They listen to your videos, view your pictures and read all your posts.”
He continued to discuss all the benefits of social media but cautioned them that the benefits do not come without a cost. He warned that students must not only be aware of the potential dangers of posting their life experiences for the world to see, but that their pictures and posts create a perception of who they are and what character qualities they possess. “Do not post anything that you don’t want your parents or family to see, since 85% of adults in the US now have Facebook accounts. Also, since Don Bosco Prep students are highly recruited by prestigious colleges, they were advised to “clean up your pages and be constantly aware of your posts.”
The presentation was met with thunderous applause and a follow-up of questions and answers about professional athletes and the problems they face. As the auditorium emptied, a student turned around a softly whispered, “Geez, I got some work to do when I get home.”
Students…. be careful of what you post and be aware of what others post on your page as well. The information can have an extremely detrimental outcome.