Imagine this scene, walking into your office and your boss coming up to you saying, “Heyyy, how was the Coke Zero Saturday afternoon…and that playlist you were listening to on Spotify…well that was SPOT on.”
You could also imagine posting as your status on a Saturday night – ‘Got an extra ticket to Lil Wayne tonight, who wants to go.’ only to have your mom post next – ‘ I’ll go see this Wayne fellow with you sweety. Love you.’
While it’s our own fault for posting every intimate detail of our life on Facebook, there’s a big difference between your friend from college knowing how you spent your Saturday night compared to your parents or boss. Thus opens up the ethical and moral debate…should we accept friend requests from our parents and boss on Facebook?
Obviously you have the right to block or accept as friends anybody you want on a social network. It’s your privacy and your content at stake and nobody is entitled to your information. That being said, you could open yourself up to some hard feelings and grief if you deny your boss, co-workers, or family their friend requests.
There are a number of different routes you can take in order to not cause resentment amongst your peers but still fully enjoy the Facebook experience. Follow some of these tips regarding friend requests from your parents or boss on Facebook:
Add, But Block
Instead of having your boss come up to your cubicle on the regular and asking you why you haven’t responded to his or her friend request yet, just add them in an instant. Now, before you go off on a rant about how crummy your job is, click on your profile and go into your Facebook friends list. From here, find your boss’s profile and near the bottom left is an option to ‘block friend.’ Now when your boss or parents log onto Facebook, they won’t even know you exist on there as all your content will be blocked. If they ask why you’re not involved on Facebook, just say “ah I never go on that thing” as you continually decry what a foul work environment you must endure on your status updates.
Your boss or parents might think it’s fishy that they never see anything from you on Facebook, even as your co-workers fist bump you on that day’s status. In order to present some semblance of a Facebook presence, organize your friends into lists so you control who sees what posts or pictures. You can go into your account>privacy settings to sort different friends into lists. Now, when you post a status or a photo, make sure to select who to share it with on the right. You can share everything with only a list called ‘close friends’ if you want and your parents will be none the wiser. Make sure to write a post every so often saying how awesome your job is and share it with the list called ‘my boss.’
Create A Second Profile
Drastic measures are sometimes called for and in this case you could always create a second profile. If you don’t trust lists or fear that co-workers could share your information with your boss, just create a second identity for your moonlighting gig as an erotic playwright. ‘Friend’ only a select few confidantes and you can easily maintain your double identities without fear of losing your day job.
There’s a fine line on what Facebook content could be considered admissible in a family argument, job dismissal or even court proceedings. Ideally, your lifestyle won’t be so controversial that what you post on Facebook causes anxiety but if it comes to a career or social networking, I’d probably choose career. That being said, if you have a great relationship with your parents and/or boss then sharing your life with them on Facebook can only increase that bond…just don’t mention your erotic playwright career just yet.