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Be Careful When Posting

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This message is a lighthearted reminder to exercise the utmost caution when posting personal information, since allnurses.com is the largest online community of nurses and nursing students in existence.

Specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych. Has 15 years experience.

Be Careful When Posting

As many of you are already aware, allnurses.com is the largest online nursing community on the world wide web and one of the most commonly visited professional social networks in existence today. The variety of forums, sheer number of wonderful members, supportive atmosphere, and constant exchange of information all contribute to making this website a fantastic virtual place for spending one's free time.

Personally, I became a member more than seven years ago while I was a student at a school of vocational nursing (LVN). As I have grown professionally and personally in the nursing field, allnurses.com has been right there with me. During my tenure here, I have completed an LVN program, graduated from an RN bridge program, and worked as a nurse for more than six years. I am still amazed at the fact that I continue to learn new tidbits on an almost daily basis while browsing these informative forums.

This message is a friendly, heartfelt reminder to exercise the utmost caution when posting personal information about you, your school, classmates, instructors, coworkers, and place of employment. After all, allnurses.com is the largest online community of nurses and nursing students, and clever readers are more than capable of putting two and two together to come up with you.

Even if you have not posted the name of your school, your workplace's name, or your exact geographic location, some inquisitive people have been able to read the very detailed posts and figure out that the member is someone with whom they are acquainted 'in real life.' In fact, this scenario has played out on more than one occasion.

While these forums are generally safe to vent and release some steam, think twice before insulting your professors or posting too much information about the patients and families that you encounter during your clinical rotations. Tread carefully when posting vivid details about the annoying classmate or the critical coworker. Exercise some caution when criticizing your nursing program. You absolutely do not want any posted material to come back and haunt you at a later date.

In summary, be careful when posting. Continue to enjoy the multiple forums, fellow members, continual flow of information, and abundant resources that make allnurses.com the biggest and best online nursing community on the internet today. After all, this website would not be the same without your great posts, opinions, contributions, viewpoints, and discourse. I know that I speak for others when I say that we love having you all here. You, the readers, are the reason that allnurses.com rocks!

TheCommuter, BSN, RN, CRRN is a longtime physical rehabilitation nurse who has varied experiences upon which to draw for her articles. She was an LPN/LVN for more than four years prior to becoming a Registered Nurse.

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42 Comment(s)

Esme12, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma. Has 41 years experience.

I wish there could be a mass mailing to the members.....!!!!! I'll be referring to this....ALOT!

Not to mention the posting of personal e-mails and being scanned by spam bots.

Be smart Be safe!

Meriwhen, ASN, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in Psych ICU, addictions.

I post under the assumption that everyone already knows who I am: that is, I don't say anything here that I wouldn't own up to saying in real life. The strategy has worked pretty well online for the last 18 years...I find it makes life much easier that way, as well as keeps me out of trouble.

I would also be especially careful if you are going to use an actual picture of yourself as your avatar.

Edited by Hygiene Queen

I cautioned a student on the student forum about using real names and email addresses (especially those including their actual names!). I have cautioned against photos and insanely clear identifiers.

All I got for my trouble were the attitudes/responses that it was "no big deal".

Me, I'm all for sharing only what you'd be willing to post on your employer's bulletin board--complete with your photo!

Pepper The Cat, BSN, RN

Specializes in Gerontology. Has 35 years experience.

I cautioned a student on the student forum about using real names and email addresses (especially those including their actual names!). I have cautioned against photos and insanely clearAll I got for my trouble were the attitudes/responses that it was "no big deal".Me, I'm all for sharing only what you'd be willing to post on your employer's bulletin board--complete with your photo!
I agree. It really scares me when people start posting email addresses.

Esme12, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma. Has 41 years experience.

I cautioned a student on the student forum about using real names and email addresses (especially those including their actual names!). I have cautioned against photos and insanely clear identifiers.

All I got for my trouble were the attitudes/responses that it was "no big deal".

Me, I'm all for sharing only what you'd be willing to post on your employer's bulletin board--complete with your photo!

They will also be the ones who are shocked when they get fired or terminated from school for breaching social media policies.

YOu can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink.

sauconyrunner

Specializes in Emergency. Has 11 years experience.

I can share that I was a member when AllNurses was a bit smaller, some 10 years ago. I guess my writing etc is distinctive...because even though I was working at a very very large hospital, etc, One of the Education Ladies recognised me and put the two together. Since I was posting a lot about my difficulties being a new grad in an ICU...I did not want her to know, so I kind of gave her a look and said, What's AllNurses? It was very creepy.

I'm a little more secure now, but it is always a good practice to be as anonymous as you can.

virgo,student nurse, CNA

Specializes in 10.

Thank you Commuter. A really good reminder. I was just having these thoughts, reading the other day. Kudos.

That Guy, BSN, RN, EMT-B

Specializes in Emergency/Cath Lab. Has 6 years experience.

I agree. It really scares me when people start posting email addresses.

Why do you think I have 5 email addresses....

Stephalump

Specializes in Forensic Psych. Has 2 years experience.

Ah, but I seriously doubt that you'd post one like robert.a.sampson@hotmail.com ....right?

>

Hah! Poor Bobby Sampson is going to wake up to an inbox full of Viagra ads and Nigerian money scams.

OB-nurse2013, BSN, RN

Specializes in Labor and Delivery. Has 3 years experience.

I post under the assumption that everyone already knows who I am: that is, I don't say anything here that I wouldn't own up to saying in real life. The strategy has worked pretty well online for the last 18 years...I find it makes life much easier that way, as well as keeps me out of trouble.

Thats how I feel about Facebook too..Mine is private but even if someone could somehow see something I wouldn't care because I never post anything that I wouldn't say in real life.

CapeCodMermaid, RN

Specializes in Gerontology, Med surg, Home Health. Has 30 years experience.

I would also be especially careful if you are going to use an actual picture of yourself as your avatar.
You mean that's NOT your cap!?!A few years ago I lived in a town that had an online newspaper. Anyone could post anything undera screen name. I picked a name that hadnothing to do with what I do or where I worked. One of my coworkers told me he spotted my post because it had tone and a clarity of style. I never posted there again.

PennyWise

Specializes in Pulmonary, Transplant, Travel RN. Has 6 years experience.

Yeah, I decided to go with a real picture of myself despite the fact that I'm well known. I figure......meh........I've scared enough people to not have to worry about it.

All kidding aside though, I find this new trend of using actual photos of yourself baffling. I was so surprised by it the first time I saw it, I was beside myself. I guess if you honestly don't plan on saying anything controversial no harm can come from it but..........."perception is reality".

What I mean is, I can very easily see someone posting something they don't consider offensive or controversial but getting in trouble because someone else (a boss, a vindictive coworker) does. If your picture is right there then..........better hope cooler/more rational heads prevail when you do. Shot, I know nurses who scan Facebook hoping to catch someone else saying something so they can print the page and run to the manager with it.

Solution: More threads of people burned by stalkers, employers, and family members because of too-easily-identified posts on AN. :D (OK, OK, no more green font as a choice, and no more Comic Sans ... a pity ... I will miss being able to scan for me and Ruby :crying2: please reconsider ... )

It's disappointing that one cannot remove their own posts here should they decide the post contains too much identifying information. If there is a way, I haven't discovered it yet.