It's There For Life
Winner of the 2013 It's There For Life Competition
These days, your digital reputation proceeds you. Employers, potential friends and partners, banks, universities – people in all walks of life check you out online, and make assessments about you, often before they’ve even met you.
And what they can see, even years into the future, is everything you’ve ever posted, and anything anyone else has posted about you too. The web doesn’t forget or just show the good bits. It’s all there, forever.
Your digital footprint is more than just your facebook page, twitter feed or blog, it is all the information online about you, whether you meant it to be seen or not, whether you posted it or not.
And once it’s out there, it could be there for a long time, even for life.
Who knows, maybe your kids will be able to Google you and see what really went on when you were eighteen?
So where do you draw the line between what you share with your mates and what you keep to yourself? And how much of your information do you want strangers to see?
Managing Your Digital Footprint
In the online world, a little bit of thought can go a very long way to protecting your reputation, not just now, but possibly for the rest of your life.
The Web Doesn’t Forget
Whatever you post online has the potential to exist for the rest of your lifetime. It's a good idea to give things some thought before putting them out there. Potential employers will put your name into a search engine before deciding to employ you. If they don't like what they see, you might not get the job.
Think Before You Post!
As a rule, when you're mad, upset or sad, take a deep breath and wait a while before describing your feelings online. And then ask yourself: do I want everyone to know how I'm feeling? The consequences of a poorly thought-out blog post or comment could be significant and long-lasting.
Never Send Private Photos
Once you press "send" you've lost control of the image. Once you send a photo using your mobile or computer, you have NO control over who can and can't view it.
Never Try To Settle An Argument In Cyberspace
An argument online, whether you're right or not, is more likely to start a flame war than it is to convince someone that they're wrong. The best way to fix a relationship is to talk to someone calmly, face-to-face.
From time-to-time do a cull of your "friends" on social networking sites. If you haven't spoken to someone in a year, are they really worth keeping as a friend?
eheadspace is a confidential, free and secure space where young people 12 - 25 or their family can chat, email or speak on the phone with a qualified youth mental health professional.
If you or someone you know need someone to talk to, for any reason, about anything, you can call Lifeline on 13 11 14 - 24 hours a day.
Kids Helpline - 1800 55 1800
Kids Helpline is a free, 24-hour counselling service for young people aged 5-25 years. Counselling is offered by phone, email and over the web.
Below the Belt: Sex, Selfies & Cyberbullying
A free Android app with info about laws on sex and consent, sexting and cyberbullying.
Stop Cyber Bullying
Take a stand against cyber bullying.
The Australian Government's eSafety site is designed to help empower you to be safe online.
Helpful site full of tips on how to stay in control on the web.
An Australian film about a group of high-school friends who post a rumour about a rival and spark a chain reaction that leaves no one untouched. Will these friends avoid being tagged forever?
A Thin Line
A US site that helps you draw the line between digital use and digital abuse.
That's Not Cool
An interactive site from the US that’s all about where you draw your digital line.