Think before you post: Can social media posts cost you a dream j - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Think before you post: Can social media posts cost you a dream job?

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SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -

In the coming weeks thousands of students in western Massachusetts will be donning a cap and gown and graduating on to the real world. 

If you are one of them, be aware since future employers will not only be looking at your educational accomplishments, but also at your social media accounts. 

Some questionable content could put you in the digital dog house, or even cost you the job. 

Dante Raggio, a student graduating soon from American International College said he is specific about what he does and doesn't choose to share on social media.

"Anything that is sexual in nature or has any alcohol or drugs or anything like that I shy away from," said Raggio. 

As does Hannah who hopes to work in the medical field post college.

"I always think of how I am going to look to an outside person," said Hannah Migeed.  

Students said they keep their posts clean as employers will likely be searching for profanity or partying posts.

"You are your own brand so whatever you post is what you want to promote and what you want people to know about you," said Derrick Barber with American International College. 

In an effort to keep job seekers from the task of going through each and every photo, tweet, and status, several websites have been created to do just that. 

Some websites go back to the start of that social media page and flag things like profanity, drugs, and alcohol use, and even search out religious or political posts. 

It will flag them so you can hide it or edit it for something better. 

Western Mass News decided to test Scrubber and Rep'nUp with a user's permission that will scan both Twitter and Facebook. 

Scrubber will also scan your Instagram, Reddit, Foursquare, Disqus, and Tumblr. 

We tested it out with recent college grad, Andrew, who now works as an Assignment Desk Editor at Western Mass News. 

Rep'nUp was first after giving permission and paying a flat fee of $19.95.

Under Andrew's social media accounts. Rep'nUp could not find any negative posts. 

Then we moved on to Scrubber, which is free to run a report, but if you have a lot of posts to cleanup you can pay $19 for them to do that for you. That particular site will scrub through and issue a letter grade.

Scrubber was able to flag 35 posts out of 482 that included explicit language, and gave him a 'D' letter grade. 

Looking closer, the site hadn't flagged content that Andrew created but it included tweets that he 'liked'. 

Andrew said many were from an account he used to follow. 

Both of these services allow users like Andrew to choose what they want to delete or keep. 

Much like a text message, tone can get lost in the tech world and that funny to you tweet may not hit the mark with a future boss. 

"Your friends and family may know you're being facetious but a stranger might take it the wrong way," said Stan Prager with Go Geeks. 

Prager also encourages upcoming graduates and job seekers to check their Facebook privacy policy settings, as well as the policies of any social scrubbing site. 

"You are handing all of your data to another third party not just Facebook, but all of your social networking," Prager noted.

Rep'nUp said they do not sell or trade your personally identifiable information.

Western Mass News reached out to Scrubber which did not list any privacy information on their website.

As soon-to-be job hunters say, the fees sound fair for someone whose tweets and posts could cost them a job. 

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. 

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