If someone is stupid enough to make an ass out of themselves on-line, via social media, or other that is their choice. If you appy for a job you open up yourself to the interviewing process. I suppose employers shouldn't do background checks, or drug tests either (laughable). Simple fact, people don't like to be held accountable for their actions.
Now, a virtuous, virtual on-line presence can be a huge positive. I used LinkedIn as an example. If you have positive connection, possibly chair an on-line professional forum, or participate in one it is look at in a very positive light. I am personally hounded by headhunters all the time because of my participation in forums that are in my wheel house.
About a week ago, a friend and past co-worker contacted me via LinkedIn that his job was eliminated. Within 48 hours he was back working with us. It can go both ways.
What I said was, what difference does it make to my employer if on my own time and by my own means I live and enjoy my life.
If I see the humor in someone trying to fire a bottle rocket out their butt crack, just what direct effect does that have on my work performance? NONE. What it does show, is that we may have a different sense of humor, but what does that have to do with work?
We went down this path as a country years ago. Let me ask you this. If I put my faith on Facebook, can you use that in your evaluations? If I were to "teach" new business students, I'd tell them to identify a faith right on their front page. Then tell me that based on a FB page (even if in part) that they were either passed over for hire, or not given a favorable review. How about posting a photo of a rainbow flag, or your membership in the NAACP.
There's lots of arguing about entitlement. THIS is the entitlement we should be fighting. The entitlement business feels they have to judge an employee based on a personal life or choice, not on their work experience, education, or performance.
And yeah, I get we need to judge a persons character. How about we judge that character in person, and focus on those character strength's and weaknesses as they pertain to the job, not feeling that we can/should control their home and personal choices.
Then, this gets followed up with the requirement for some business leaders themselves to participate in their own social sharing network via LinkedIn. What a great way to build company morale and motivation... do as i say, not as I do.
Oh well. It is what it is. I'm heading over to FB now. There's a new People of Walmart post and my brother is supposed to post pics of some prospect truck purchases I'm going to look over. Is it spring yet?