In 2013, we can take pictures with our phones, share images and articles with a click of a button, stream and watch our favorite shows right on our computer, post videos that can be viewed by millions of people across the world, and maintain long-distance contact with family and friends using email, text message, social media sites, and even video chat.
Yes, living in the technological age can be quite a blessing…but also a curse. If we’ve learned anything from leaked private videos and cases in which illegal behavior posted online has provided enough evidence for an arrest, it’s that what goes online, stays online and can follow you for the rest of your life.
While many adults are guilty of oversharing online, teens, college students, and young adults are more likely than other age groups to post inappropriate alcohol-related pictures online, even of themselves. At the time, it might seem cool to show off your beer pong skills, how much liquor you can “handle,” or your new fake ID, but those pictures might come back to haunt you when it comes time to apply to college, for a job, or even for an apartment.
In fact, because the internet has become such a common source for finding information about people, from LinkedIn profiles to a quick and simple Google search, and people are so open about their personal lives on their social media accounts, college recruiters, employers, and landlords often check out the online presence of potential students, employees, and tenants, which can be a deciding factor in your acceptance or hiring.
Social media’s not the only thing that can reveal your alcohol-related mistakes. Potential employers, landlords and apartment community managers, and even car insurance companies can easily find records of drunk driving and other alcohol-related convictions you might have through online databases of court records.
Keep your personal life private and your future bright by remembering that what goes online, stays online and by following these guidelines:
- Never drink and drive or commit any other alcohol-related crime
- Don’t post pictures, videos, or other content of alcohol-related behavior online, especially if you’re underage
- Keep your social media profile private if you decide to post such content but remember that something you post only on your social media profile, blog or website, or photo/video sharing account can end up elsewhere on the internet and stay there, even after you delete it from where you originally posted it
- Delete any content containing inappropriate or illegal alcohol-related behavior from your online accounts if you already have such content posted
Also, remember that “what goes online, stays online” can refer to any sort of inappropriate, illegal, or just distasteful behavior, not just alcohol-related behavior.