Five years ago was, I think, was the first time I wrote about young Net users needing to be good spin doctors and get in touch with their inner political consultants. I was thinking more about protecting reputations and future prospects than opportunities to run for office. But now we’ve had the first election in which politicians have had to confront the social-Web skeletons in their closets, the New York Times pointed out yesterday. “Who knew it would happen so quickly?” If you have a child running for class president or considering a political career, have him or her read this article, which aggregates a number of cases of politicians’ Web-based indiscretions gone very public. The Times writes suggest we’re in a transition time, with 20-something future leaders having come from a time when hardly anybody thought about what social-media research danah boyd calls “invisible publics” and before we’re all inured to seeing people’s party behavior turned into public indiscretions – inured due to sheer volume. “Still, it seems certain that, right now, the aspiring leaders of the United States are busy scrubbing their Facebook profiles of incriminating evidence, looking at those who have learned the hard way,” according to this article. Its writers don’t believe it’ll get easier for politicians as the social Web matures. They end with the view of Prof. Daniel J. Solove, author of The Future of Reputation, that human nature isn’t that forgiving. Do you agree? I’m not sure. I do think we have a lot of work to do in new-media literacy and citizenship, but I also think kids have already gotten smarter about all this than some of these young politicians were in 2006.
NEW! Subscribe to our newsletter
Please sign up for our email newsletter. We publish about twice a month (you can easily unsubscribe if you need to).
NetFamilyNews – by Anne Collier
- Millennials’ changing social media use: Survey
- Heard of Twitch? Amazon has!
- Dealing with the nasties online
- Leadership in bullying prevention and so much more
- Kindness really could be going viral! Just look…
- More clarity on teens’ ‘Am I pretty?’ videos
- A bit of videogaming is good for kids: Study
- Virginia teen sexting case: (Somewhat) reduced injustice
Analysis & News – by Larry Magid
- Internet Governance Forum topics include human rights, network neutrality and child protection
- Protecting children online needs to allow for their right to free speech
- It’s time for schools to upgrade both technology and pedagogy
- Why Google (and Facebook) should admit kids under 13
- As Ferguson struggles, Georgia teens create app to rate police departments
- Tech can make driving dangerous, but also safer
- IAC’s Ask.com buys Ask.fm and hires a safety officer to stem bullying
- Massive data breach shows skills of Russian hackers