10 Social Media Blunders That Will Hurt Your Career

woman at computerYou probably know all the ways social media can help you professionally. You can demonstrate your expertise on a topic using Twitter, network your way to a new job using LinkedIn and keep old connections fresh on Facebook.

But social media can also have a darker side.

78% of job recruiters check search engines for background on candidates, and 63% check social media sites, too. So it doesn’t matter how you set your privacy settings, whether you friend your boss on Facebook, or how few followers you have: What you do on social media every day can have a very real impact on your career and your salary.

Some social media blunders aren’t so obvious, even to those of you who know your way around a hashtag. Over the past couple of years, a few snafus have gained pop culture notoriety, earning nicknames like the "Cisco Fatty" incident or spawning a whole new name for getting caught skipping work: "pulling a Facebook Fairy."

All in all, these hilarious blunders—summarized below—make for a perfect list of what not to do on your favorite social networking site, lest it cost you your job. To help you avoid making any missteps, we talked to two social media luminaries, Shama Kabani, CEO of The Marketing Zen Group and author of "The Zen of Social Media Marketing"; and Diane Danielson, Principal Consultant with DKDNew Media Strategies and co-author of “The Savvy Gal's Guide to Online Networking (or What Would Jane Austen Do?)”.

Read on for our slideshow of the craziest social media blunders yet—and how not to make one of your own.

View Slide Show

More From LearnVest

Should an employee be dismissed over a Facebook post? Because that has happened.
How private is Facebook, really?
Facebook can actually hurt your credit score. Here's how.

  • Not_happy

    Quite annoying that I can’t see whole document by scrolling…

    • anon

      Click list view at the top

  • Snetterton

    Seems to me that an employer who spends time trolling social media for his employees has too much much time on his hands himself and not enough work to do.

  • neverdiss

    This is why I freelance.

  • Free and glad to be

    Follow these tips and bid your private life farewell. Good sense prevails, not hiding what and who you are away from fascists’ eyes.

  • IBikeNYC

    I am just speechless.

    INMATES have more liberties than this!

  • Moonman Alpha

    A good reason to dump Twitter! Anyone who tweets regularly is a twit!

  • Julia Griggs

    Walking on eggshells is a really great way to live your only life. Maybe more people should just figure out better ways to go into business for themselves instead of bowing to the control freak culture.

  • Bruno Oliveira

    Long story short, this can be briefed as:

    1. Don’t badmouth your company or its customers at any stage (be after a successful interview, on-going job or after a bad experience whatsoever);

    2. Don’t try to play the ‘coolest guy’ making a fool of everybody and dictating what people should wear or do;

    3. If you want to say/post something publicly, be it in a blog / twitter / instagram so badly, be discreet or at the very least watch your “boldness”.

  • Staffan Henningsson

    This last one is too much. Don’t become friends with your students, fine, but to be expected to look like some kind of saint is just too much. Most people drink at some point, heck most have partied, even as ‘resposible adults’, and to have the expectation that you’re some buttoned up person who never drinks or has a good time, possibly doing something other than having family-friendly fun is really bad.