Privacy Statement

Gen Y just doesn’t care about their privacy.

Speaking as one of them, I am not worried about the information that goes up on my social networking profiles. I share personal information every day and tagged in photos every Monday morning after a big weekend. And there are some shocking ones.

The reason I bring this up is because Gen X’s are constantly telling me that this is going to affect my career with employers frowning upon such behaviour. But I disagree. Sooner or later employers are going to release that the high majority of Gen Y have at least one Facebook photo that shows them partying, drinking or worse. Interestingly, I don’t have a problem with complete transparency or the need to hide what I do in my own time.

What’s going to be really interesting is when Gen Y takes a majority in the workplace and they (we) become the employers of the next generation, what ever they’re called. Can you even imagine what the social norms will be then?

I actually have a link to my Facebook page in my email signature. And I send emails to potential future employers every day. I’m not worried about the photos they will see. Although sooner or later someone might realise I only have one suit and two shirts that I have to keep alternating.

No Comments
  • Matt
    Posted at October 9, 2008 3:55pm, 09 October Reply

    I couldn’t agree more Zac. I’m more careful about protecting my email address from spam than I am about giving out any other personal info – it’s pretty much all open slather as far as I care. My home address and birthday are public knowledge thanks to ASIC, there are photos of me passed out and/or off chops on Facebook, videos of all kinds of compromising situations on my band’s website and I have more social networking profiles than Paris Hilton. I gave up trying to stay private long ago, bring it on I say!

  • Gayle
    Posted at October 9, 2008 4:35pm, 09 October Reply
    That’s a really interesting view. The above URL indicates though that 22% of employers say that they use social networking to count you out with a further 9% indicating that they will commence evaluating potential employees in this way soon. 11% of employers conducted searches on social networking sites in 2006 so the numbers are significantly growing. Maybe it’s not a matter of you being comfortable about being transparent but more of whether you’ll change if you miss out on a job when the moral brigade discounts you for a job you should be qualified for due to such transparency. Who’s behavior will change first I wonder? Interesting topic indeed!

  • Zac Martin
    Posted at October 9, 2008 4:43pm, 09 October Reply

    @ Matt

    Bring it on indeed. Sometimes, I think photos like that actually work to your advantage anyway.

    @ Gayle

    I suspect behaviour will only change completely when Gen X leaves the workplace, but I’ve always seen myself as an innovator and a trend setter!

    Posted at October 9, 2008 4:53pm, 09 October Reply

    @matt, LOL Yes, but by then you’ll be firmly established in a career, so the Gen Zers (?) will be driving you nuts with the things they do. Is it being a trend setter if you’re bucking the current trend? (I guess so…grin).

  • nat
    Posted at October 9, 2008 5:31pm, 09 October Reply

    Yeah totally agree Zac. I have ranted on this often in the past.
    I am not totally sure if Gen Y’s will be that different bosses – power and responsibility have a weird way of making people boring and narrow minded.
    But as for employers looking at our profiles – if they are going to make decisions based upon photos – fuck em, you don’t want to work for them anyways. work for and with people you respect!

  • Anonymous
    Posted at October 9, 2008 7:57pm, 09 October Reply


    If anything, it can help to ‘humanize’ a candidate (sticking with the job applicant metaphor).

    But at the same time, you still at least want to appear somewhat ‘responsible’, and not like a total degenerate

  • bubbles
    Posted at October 10, 2008 9:54am, 10 October Reply

    I totally agree. I think it will be particularly interesting when Gen Y are high up in Government. We’ve grown up with digital pics taken of all our stupid moments so I imagine the future Gen Y Prime Minister is going to have some interesting pics and old social networking profiles immortalised through Google.

  • Gavin Heaton
    Posted at October 10, 2008 12:18pm, 10 October Reply

    Google is going to end up like your Mum — bringing out all those embarrassing photos from your teens, your first girl/boyfriend, the drunk auntie, the inappropriate brother … I am just hoping you pick up a new shirt before too long 😉

  • Zac Martin
    Posted at October 10, 2008 1:03pm, 10 October Reply

    @ Anonymous and Bubbles

    Good point, going to a strip club helped to humanise Kevin Rudd for this election.

    @ Gavin

    I might look at picking up a new tie soon too, taking my total to three. =P

  • Wags
    Posted at May 22, 2011 10:04pm, 22 May Reply

    "The reason I bring this up is because Gen X's are constantly telling me that this is going to affect my career with employers frowning upon such behaviour. But I disagree… Interestingly, I don't have a problem with complete transparency or the need to hide what I do in my own time."

    I'd love to know what Zac in 2011 thinks about this? Still current? 😉

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