References to clients/colleagues/managers/companies in social networking discussions/posting

1 Jul 2009 - 2:25pm
5 years ago
12 replies
761 reads
Chauncey Wilson
2007

There was a message earlier today that had a lively discussion about
printing out passwords, but the subject line brings up another
meta-issue of how we address those we work with/for. The subject line
referred to "crazy client". In this world of social networking and
myriad connections, should we be careful about references to those we
work with. I've seen Twitter messages where people are talking about
their "bad manager" and "their crazy company" and wonder how these
references might hurt in the long run. I know of a few instances
where private things got back to managers and the result was not
pretty. You never know who is on a discussion for sure - your client
or manager might be "on the line" without awareness or someone in
his/her organization.

I'm curious what others think about this.

Thanks,
Chauncey

Comments

1 Jul 2009 - 3:41pm
jasonrobb
2009

Chauncey,

So glad you brought this up, that was the first thing that came to
mind when I read the title this morning.

I completely agree with your stance. I prefer a non-destructive path,
personally. Although some people are okay with burning their bridges.

It's kind of a no-brainer for me. If it's on the internet, there's
a chance it will come back to me. If not, I'm naive at best, or
careless at worst.

Either way, it's bad manners, but it's a personal choice/approach
to life. And I respect that freedom over any enforcement of
etiquette. Live and let live.

Cheers,

Jason R.

--
Jason Robb
jason at jasonrobb.com
http://jasonrobb.com
http://uxboston.com
http://uiscraps.tumblr.com

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=43305

1 Jul 2009 - 4:01pm
Scott McDaniel
2007

There is a balance to be struck, definitely.

I've spent a couple years all but paralyzed over whether my personal
blog can be found
and it'd somehow affect my career because I express some strong (while
still largely mainstream)
political beliefs in it. Most people have at least has one bad boss
story, and in my case,
it'd weaken the story to irrelevance if I redacted too much of it to
not identify the company or
person, so with my method, I simply can't share it online. Even the
straightforward purpose of
Glassdoor.com is tough for me, since I've mostly worked for small
companies wherein I was
one of a small and distinct UX team.

So yes, I completely agree, we should be careful, but on the other
hand, you choose
your level of risk. A former boss and current friend pretty much
speaks his mind openly
in a way that sometimes makes me cringe when I think about "oh noes!
potential job opportunity,
chance for promotion or networking!" He simply views the situation
differently: he'll take
that risk for the freedom to say what he wants.

I'm trying to find the middle ground :]

Cheers,
Scott

On Wed, Jul 1, 2009 at 3:25 PM, Chauncey
Wilson<chauncey.wilson at gmail.com> wrote:
> There was  a message earlier today that had a lively discussion about
> printing out passwords, but the subject line brings up another
> meta-issue of how we address those we work with/for.  The subject line
> referred to "crazy client". In this world of social networking and
> myriad connections, should we be careful about references to those we
> work with. I've seen Twitter messages where people are talking about
> their "bad manager" and "their crazy company"  and wonder how these
> references might hurt in the long run.  I know of a few instances
> where private things got back to managers and the result was not
> pretty.  You never know who is on a discussion for sure - your client
> or manager might be "on the line" without awareness or someone in
> his/her organization.
>
> I'm curious what others think about this.
>
> Thanks,
> Chauncey
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

1 Jul 2009 - 4:09pm
Traci Lepore
2008

I have to agree with you Chauncey. You never know who is reading the stuff you put out there for the world. And it is still the case that the UX world is a small one. Coming from a consulting background it has been a strong lesson that you must always use even greater discretion than you think!

Traci Lepore
Graphic Designer
traci106 at hotmail.com
617-821-2156

1 Jul 2009 - 4:16pm
Joshua Muskovitz
2008

My eye-opener was when I discovered that all of those 20th century
posts to netnews (over our high-speed 19.2 dial up UUNET connection)
were acquired by Google and indexed and made freely available.

People are very much oblivious to the idea that things posted online
are forever. How many websites have tried in vain to purge regretable
content**, only to see it dredged up (in the short term) in Google's
cache or (in the long term) by the Wayback machine?

** I was Stalinized by a former employer who at one time referred to
me (correctly) as a founder, and then later eliminated all traces of
that title, except for all of those cached press releases. Oops.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=43305

1 Jul 2009 - 4:26pm
Jarrod Lombardo
2008

This is why I do my best to never say anything I will be ashamed of,
ever. It doesn't mean I might not call a client "crazy" but I'd
only do that if I was willing to defend my statement to the client.

Also, MC Frontalot has a song that sort of relates to this discussion
(link to lyrics, not AV media):
http://frontalot.com/index.php/?page=lyrics&lyricid=41

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=43305

1 Jul 2009 - 10:06pm
Michele Marut
2005

I agree with Joshua about awareness of items being on-line forever. As
a community awareness thing , I'd like to add that the IXDA list is
not just distributed on email to be found by google at some point -
but is publicly archived on the website. I'm posting this now from
the site. Therefore anyone can google your name or email and find
your postings.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=43305

2 Jul 2009 - 5:10am
Chauncey Wilson
2007

It would be useful to be able to choose whether you wanted something
archived or not. I'm on another group where we don't archive any of
the conversations (people can of course, save copies) to encourage
more freedom of speech and less concern over the issues we've been
discussing. Of course, some people disagree with the no-archive
policy, but overall, it seems to work and the policy is clearly
spelled out when you join. That approach is more like a conversation
where you are not being recorded the entire time.

Chauncey

On Wed, Jul 1, 2009 at 4:06 PM, michele marut<mmarut15 at gmail.com> wrote:
> I agree with Joshua about awareness of items being on-line forever. As
> a community awareness thing , I'd like to add that the IXDA list is
> not just distributed on email to be found by google at some point -
> but is publicly archived on the website. I'm posting this now from
> the site. Therefore anyone can google your name or email and find
> your postings.
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=43305
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

2 Jul 2009 - 11:07am
Jared M. Spool
2003

On Jul 2, 2009, at 6:10 AM, Chauncey Wilson wrote:

> It would be useful to be able to choose whether you wanted something
> archived or not. I'm on another group where we don't archive any of
> the conversations (people can of course, save copies) to encourage
> more freedom of speech and less concern over the issues we've been
> discussing. Of course, some people disagree with the no-archive
> policy, but overall, it seems to work and the policy is clearly
> spelled out when you join. That approach is more like a conversation
> where you are not being recorded the entire time.

It's a falsity that the group that doesn't archive is somehow more
free to have conversations that this group, which does archive.

As a member of that group, you never know who else is on the list. You
don't know who is saving messages or who might forward them to someone
else. (The group has a policy that you not supposed to forward, but
there's no way to enforce it.)

So, even in a group which doesn't archive, you can't assure the sender
that a client/colleague/manager or someone else won't see the email.

In my opinion, it would be detrimental to the long-term social value
of this group to have a choice of archiving. If you gave the choice on
individual messages, then threads would be sporadic (not to mention
the problem of quoting unarchived messages in archived responses). If
you gave the choice on entire threads, then important information
would be missing, making the value of the archives unreliable.

The reality is that once you press the SEND button in any email, that
message is then broadcast to hundreds of computers, logged, and
archived on systems you don't even know exist. (For Sarbanes-Oxley
compliance, many US corporations now log every incoming and outgoing
message.)

So, if you don't want someone to see your thoughts, don't put them in
an email. Period.

My $0.02.

Jared

Jared M. Spool
User Interface Engineering
510 Turnpike St., Suite 102, North Andover, MA 01845
e: jspool at uie.com p: +1 978 327 5561
http://uie.com Blog: http://uie.com/brainsparks Twitter: @jmspool

2 Jul 2009 - 1:05pm
Chauncey Wilson
2007

You make some great points Jared.

While I see your point about archiving and understand your objections,
knowing that your statements are archived in a public database or
Googleable (not sure if that is a word) can certainly influence how
freely one discusses a topic and how much detail to include and what
to discuss. One's perceptions of the extent to which conversations
are saved and distributed and accessible to others can influence the
style and content of conversations. Social norms (whether you like
them or not) and other social psych principles do have an impact on
one's interactions over social networks.

You are right that anyone can forward a message of course. No
disagreement there. However, there are risks for forwarding based on
the appropriate social, business, and legal constraints. Perhaps
there should be strict no-forward choice for emails as well as a
no-archive choice (whoa, another controversy) :-).

So there are several things that are important with regard to
conversations on social networking systems.

1. Consider that your conversations are public and could be forwarded
2. Ask whether there is an archive and how accessible it is
3. Avoid inflammatory language.
4. Consider whether what you are discussing would be perceived as proprietary.
5. Engage in strong debates, but don't flame or be abusive.

While we are on this topic - there is a pretty lively discussion at
UPA about Twittering during sessions, especially with loud keyboards.
I'm curious what others think about twittering during a session?

Chauncey

On Thu, Jul 2, 2009 at 12:07 PM, Jared Spool<jspool at uie.com> wrote:
>
> On Jul 2, 2009, at 6:10 AM, Chauncey Wilson wrote:
>
>> It would be useful to be able to choose whether you wanted something
>> archived or not. I'm on another group where we don't archive any of
>> the conversations (people can of course, save copies) to encourage
>> more freedom of speech and  less concern over the issues we've been
>> discussing.  Of course, some people disagree with the no-archive
>> policy, but overall, it seems to work and the policy is clearly
>> spelled out when you join. That approach is more like a conversation
>> where you are not being recorded the entire time.
>
> It's a falsity that the group that doesn't archive is somehow more free to
> have conversations that this group, which does archive.
>
> As a member of that group, you never know who else is on the list. You don't
> know who is saving messages or who might forward them to someone else. (The
> group has a policy that you not supposed to forward, but there's no way to
> enforce it.)
>
> So, even in a group which doesn't archive, you can't assure the sender that
> a client/colleague/manager or someone else won't see the email.
>
> In my opinion, it would be detrimental to the long-term social value of this
> group to have a choice of archiving. If you gave the choice on individual
> messages, then threads would be sporadic (not to mention the problem of
> quoting unarchived messages in archived responses). If you gave the choice
> on entire threads, then important information would be missing, making the
> value of the archives unreliable.
>
> The reality is that once you press the SEND button in any email, that
> message is then broadcast to hundreds of computers, logged, and archived on
> systems you don't even know exist. (For Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, many US
> corporations now log every incoming and outgoing message.)
>
> So, if you don't want someone to see your thoughts, don't put them in an
> email. Period.
>
> My $0.02.
>
> Jared
>
> Jared M. Spool
> User Interface Engineering
> 510 Turnpike St., Suite 102, North Andover, MA 01845
> e: jspool at uie.com p: +1 978 327 5561
> http://uie.com  Blog: http://uie.com/brainsparks  Twitter: @jmspool
>
>

2 Jul 2009 - 5:58pm
Dave Malouf
2005

re: privacy and sensitivity of your messages
I agree w/ Jared 100%. EVERYTHING you send over the intertubes is
public record unless it is encrypted between the sender and
destination(s). Any additions to the system are tantamount to TSA
regulations which create a false understanding of the system and in
the end cause more grief than they are worth. I would highlight this
to be especially true on a technology interest group like this one.

re: twittering during events
The gain far out plays the negatives. As someone who speaks often I
LOVE it for any group bigger than 30. I can see how smaller groups
are probably more about discussion internally and the speakers
ability to track individuals during the talk increase. So get
yourself an iPhone to type on. they don't make a sound. ;)

I would also caution an "organization" from making any blanket
statements in this regard. This is really between an individual
speaker and his audience.

-- dave

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=43305

2 Jul 2009 - 8:11pm
Alan James Salmoni
2008

Chauncey Wilson: "I'm curious what others think about twittering
during a session? "

I've spoken at quite a few events with an endless background noise
of keyboards tickering away, but it's no problem. As long as people
don't have a conversation, I don't mind.

In terms of having something like usenet's x-noarchive header field,
it often doesn't work - for example, if someone quotes the message of
someone who chose not to be archived, it has little effect. In
reality, it's not workable and this may give some people a false
sense of security and encourage them to make posts that they later
truly regret. At least with everything being archived, everyone knows
exactly where they stand.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=43305

3 Jul 2009 - 6:29am
Jared M. Spool
2003

On Jul 2, 2009, at 2:05 PM, Chauncey Wilson wrote:

> While I see your point about archiving and understand your objections,
> knowing that your statements are archived in a public database or
> Googleable (not sure if that is a word) can certainly influence how
> freely one discusses a topic and how much detail to include and what
> to discuss. One's perceptions of the extent to which conversations
> are saved and distributed and accessible to others can influence the
> style and content of conversations. Social norms (whether you like
> them or not) and other social psych principles do have an impact on
> one's interactions over social networks.

I agree. Knowing that something is archived changes behavior.

My point was that the group you're refering to pretends that it's ok
to talk freely, when, in fact, it has the same consequences as a group
that's archived. Since the membership role isn't published and anyone
who asks to join is let in, you can never be sure who is seeing the
content you want to "talk freely" about.

Since you can never be sure, your behavior will also change.

The only difference is the group insists its different when it really
isn't. Isn't that more insidious?

I think so.

Jared

Syndicate content Get the feed