Wash Your Face(book)

We’re not robots who spend every waking hour working for IUP’s strategic visioning project. We have lives outside of work and school, and sometimes those lives show up on Facebook and Twitter.

It’s okay to have a life outside of work, but there are just some things that you don’t want potential employers or clients to see. Yes, it’s okay to go out and have a drink every once in a while, but do you really want to have that photo as somebody’s first impression of you?

I found one tool, called SimpleWash, that can help identify and get rid of these kinds of references on your Facebook or Twitter page. Instead of employers or clients searching your name and finding terrible pictures online, you can feel better knowing that your pages are professional and make a good impression.

But I live a pretty dull life, it seems. I decided to try SimpleWash on my own Facebook, wondering what it could possibly flag as inappropriate. Take a look at what SimpleWash found for me.


SimpleWash example

Yes, that’s right folks. Take a look at what SimpleWash decided potential employers should not see, including but not limited to:

  • Me talking about “crack”, i.e. two stray cats trying to poke their noses through the crack in the front door
  • Me using the most profane of all swear words: butt. I was comparing my butt to a rhino I saw on Kilimanjaro Safaris in Disney World.
  • The butt does not stop there. I then called my fiance, Jeremy, a (gasp) “cranky-butt” when he wanted to stay in the hotel room and nap instead of go to one of the Disney parks.

SimpleWash example

It also flagged some of the things I became a fan of on Facebook, including some books and music.

Notice that “speed” from the “Speed of Darkness” Flogging Molly album is flagged. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is also flagged simply because someone is unfortunate enough to have the last name “Beer-Davies.”

As you can see, SimpleWash isn’t perfect. It can flag plenty of things that are innocuous.

But if you’re concerned that you Facebook or Twitter might have something that you wouldn’t want other people to see, SimpleWash or other similar tools can be a good place to start.

Try it out for yourself and see what comes up.

Leave a comment and let us know the silliest thing SimpleWash flagged for you.


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