64% of 18 to 25 years olds have deleted a regrettable social media post.
According to a survey of the tweet-before-you think generation, a carefree attitude towards their social media posts prevails and a significant majority are completely unaware of the lasting impact of their social network communications. The research of 1,000 18-25 year olds was commissioned by www.scrambls.com and found that 25 per cent of 18 to 25 year olds said they are not worried about inappropriate posts affecting their future employment prospects, saying their posts “are no one’s business but my own.”
One in ten (13 per cent), have found themselves in hot water over a social media post, 24 per cent have got in trouble with an employer, one in five (21 per cent), upset a partner and18 per cent felt the wrath of their parents. Swearing isn’t a problem for 39 per cent of people who think it’s acceptable to swear in public social media posts. Of the 64 per cent that have deleted a regrettable post, 43 per cent did so because they were drunk at the time, 32 per cent because they realised the post might be seen by someone it wasn’t intended for and 26 per cent because the post expressed a controversial or inappropriate opinion. A further 21 per cent have deleted posts because they were worried about ambiguous comments being misconstrued by other users.
Being caught on camera doing something you shouldn’t be is also a concern, 70 per cent have deleted or ‘de-tagged’ a picture, and women feel more camera conscious with 77 per cent of women likely to de-tag a picture, versus 51 per cent of men.
“The unfortunate reality is that although it is possible to remove a post from a social networking site, it doesn’t mean the offending content has been removed from the internet. An indelible footprint remains in archives and if content has been ReTweeted or ‘Liked’,” comments Joseph Souren of scrambls. “At 18-25 years old, young adults are at a stage in their lives where they don’t want their social activities defining their life-long digital identity. Young people are not considering their social media legacy, and millions face a real danger of those regrettable posts coming back to haunt them in later life. A generation of future politicians and business leaders may encounter significant barriers to their chosen career path; especially when potential employers Google their name to find comments from a past existence that betray an otherwise professional outlook.”
When asked specifically about their approach to online privacy, the survey uncovered significant differences between the nation’s young men and women. Overall 17 per cent said that they had absolutely no idea what can or can’t be seen publically on their social profiles. However, 27 per centof men versus just 12 per cent of women said they were clueless about privacy settings.
Furthermore, a quarter of men (26 per cent) compared to 14 per cent of women said they did understand their privacy settings but didn’t care what can or can’t be seen. Britain’s young women were also found to be far more conscientious about privacy overall; 59 per cent said they manage their privacy settings carefully, versus just 35 per cent of men.
Women too are more aware of the long term impact of their social media activity. 6 in 10 women (59 per cent) said they have adapted their privacy settings because they are worried about the consequences of their social networking from an employment perspective. And the men? Just a quarter (24 per cent) were as concerned.
The good news for Britain’s young social media users is that by using scrambls they have the ability to share private communications online, and establish personal control of every tweet or status update. To scrambl messages, users enable scrambls in their browser to encode part or all of a message before it’s instantly uploaded to social media sites. They select the individuals or groups that can see the message in clear text on their devices. Friends just need to add scrambls to their own browser and messages will look the same as usual for them. Anyone else that was not approved to read the post, such as a future boss, will see only scrambld text.
Scrambls makes sharing content simple, safe and fun, while establishing lasting control for everything written and shared online. When entering status updates, tweets, blog posts and more, scrambls empowers users not only with the ability to choose who can see posts—but also when messages appear, for how long and much more. And if a user posts something and then changes their mind, they can even take it back simply by changing the groups or individuals permitted to read that post. Scrambld messages truly remain private because online services can’t read or scan the data of every post.