Originally posted 2015-02-17 15:47:48. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
In the latest instance of a “Tweet Heard ‘Round The World,” this week a Texas teen named Cella has gained internet fame for being the latest person fired for a high-profile tweet.
Ew I start this f*** a** job tomorrow
The profanity-laded tweet was brought to the attention of her new employer and before she even began her new job, she was let go via a response on Twitter from her new employer.
Cases like this bring up an important subject…
…the younger the generation, the less likely they seem to realizing the full implication and reach of their personal social media channels. Even locking a feed to only friends cannot guarantee privacy as friends can share the contents of the conversation outside of the intended audience.
Just as the younger generation doesn’t quite fully understand a lifestyle that has not been fully connected and digital, the previous generations don’t fully understand a lifestyle that is. Teens such as Cella may not realize that in the digital world, publishing a public tweet will come across to some the same as shouting it while standing in front of the store in question. The reach of social media means the tweet extends far beyond the immediate circle of friends it may have been intended for. While Cella may shrug and see it only as a brief moment of fame for herself and her feed, those of us who are not in her generation may see it as a black mark that will follow her forever.
So which is it?
That is a difficult question to answer. The truth lies in a fluctuating middle ground. However, there are some definite lessons to be learned from the entire situation.
Social is the keyword when it comes to social media. Even if a post doesn’t get news coverage and thousands of retweets, shares or favorites, it can still gain traction within circles. Once something is posted online, you have lost control. You cannot tether digital information and expect to limit where and how it is shared or choose the audience. Even if you do not have your account set to be public, it can still extend beyond the immediate circle for whom you intend the information.
To Cella and to some of the teens who have jumped to her support, this may have “just” been a pizza job, but what happens when she applies for a future job of any sort? Employers often now take to Google to do even a precursory search on potential employees and infamy lives on long past the first media blitz. To this day, if you Google Justine Sacco, the first thing you find is an article about her being fired for her social media blunder on Twitter, and that was over a year ago. (A year in real world time is equivalent to a decade in internet time, right?)
Ponder that for a moment. Consider the staying power of a single posting of 140 characters or less and the impact it has on your life long after it’s redacted.
I feel bad for Cella. I do not sympathize with the fact that she was fired or any of the media backlash against her. I do not approve of her reveling in her newfound and brief internet fame. One day she will mature and, we can hope, realize her mistake. Since we can assume that due to her age, it will likely not be in the near future, it is difficult to speculate on how she can stage a social comeback from that if she chooses to do so and hopefully eliminate the darkness of the blemish that this incident leaves.
It is unfortunate that due to the nature of teenagers and their claim of dominance on social media, these lessons may never be learned or shared with those who may need them. Since it seems that these blunders are here to stay, perhaps we need to judge less and educate more. I’ll ponder that more as I go see what Scott Bartosiewicz is up to these days…