Why is it important to think before you post? Everyone has been in the position where something happens and your immediate reaction is to share your views on *Facebook, *Twitter, Whatsapp or BBM. Who knew these ‘immediate reactions’ could have an impact on your future?
17 year old Paris Brown who was employed as the UK’s first youth police commissioner for Kent Police, only to be dismissed before even having the chance to take up the role. Why? Her Tweets came back to haunt her! Paris was excited at the opportunity of a new career working within the police force, but racist and homophobic tweets that she had posted at the age of 14 meant that her dreams were shattered. This case highlights that regardless of age and privacy settings, the police and potential employers have a way of finding out what kind of individual they are employing.
There have been several other young people who have been in trouble with the law for their social media outbursts. In May 2012, a 21 year old student was arrested for posting racially offensive comments on Twitter about footballer Patrice Muamba. Although the student did try to delete his comments, he was unable to do so and was arrested and suspended from his university. It just goes to show that you need to think before you post; otherwise you could be in serious trouble not only with the police but with potential employers.
*There are age restrictions on social networking sites: In order to be eligible to sign up or join Twitter or Facebook you must be at least 13 years old.