There was once a time when you only had to worry
about children I have heard many a blogger say that blogging
fills a need. While blogging provides a humanizing effect
on news and journaling, it also opens a window into personal
lives. The details shared in blogs were once only available
to a select group of friends, and while blogging has become
common place, it has risks that should not be ignored.
Cyberstalking is a new phenomenon that allows
anonymous online stalkers to prowl for victims. Online bloggers
traditionally provide personal details about their lives.
As a result, many women that blog are becoming victims. Most
people are concerned about children on the Internet and set
up rigorous posting guidelines for children, adolescents,
and teenagers, but few adults heed the warnings and often
do not consider that they too can be targeted.
Females, in particular, should be cautious when
circumnavigating the blogosphere. If you are a blogger or
contemplating an online journal, consider these tips to protecting
Do not have an online profile.
Most blogging services allow bloggers to create an online
profile. While it might be fun to post information about likes
and dislikes, it is best to refrain from posting any personal
details. Often, personal details inadvertently provide insight
into physical location or habits. The aggregate information
in a personal profile can also assist someone interested in
pursuing an individual.
Manage your blog anonymously or adopt an alias for all online
posting. This will help protect you in the event that you
draw unwanted attention.
Avoid personal or identifying details.
Avoid any personal or identifying details when posting in
your blog. Do not post in advance about locations that you
will be or about areas that you live near.
Refrain from posting a picture. Photos can invite trouble
or unwanted attention.
Avoid inappropriate dialogue.
Be careful not to engage in dialogue that could be interpreted
in a way that it was not intended. Sometimes humorous threads
can get out of hand. If the dialogue degrades to an area that
makes you uncomfortable, disengage from the dialogue and refrain
from further posting. Also when making decisions about individuals
online, consider their past posting behavior and attempt to
consider their true intentions.
Always remember that just because you do not have a dialogue
with someone does not mean that they are not reading everything
that you write. Many people merely lurk on line and don't
engage in comment posting, but do read what is written. Your
audience could be much larger than you realize.
Internet content is timeless, and keep in mind that even if
you remove content, it might be archived or syndicated. If
you do not want something read, do not post it to the Internet.
High Schools, Colleges and Employers all search the Internet
to discern an individuals history. Sordid details about a
late night will not help land a coveted job.
The internet is a haven for all types of predators.
Always remember that just because someone says something is
true, does not mean that it is. Predators adopt personas of
who they think you want them to be. Just as we provide guidelines
to young children, adults should be wary and take precautions
when posting online as well.
While blogging can be a great outlet and channel,
and in someway immortalizing thoughts, it is important that
safety is considered and that good blogging practices are
followed at all times.
About the Author:
Sharon Housley manages marketing for FeedForAll http://www.feedforall.com
software for creating, editing, publishing RSS feeds and podcasts.
In addition Sharon manages marketing for NotePage http://www.notepage.net
a wireless text messaging software company.