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40% Indians Fear Getting Fired for Thorny Social Media Posts, Finds New Research

Shockingly, 25.3 per cent admitted they have no idea how to change their privacy settings on social media and over a third said they have not done anything to change privacy settings despite knowing how to

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fake, media, behaviour, artificial intelligence
Social Media Icons. VOA

While many people use social media profiles for professional use, over 40 per cent Indians agree that they could get fired from their jobs for controversial content on their social media channels, new research has found.

Worryingly, despite being a hotbed for personal information and photos, more than half of users in India have at least one dormant social media account, with 41 per cent admitting they have not even thought about deleting inactive accounts or giving them a clear out, said the study released on Tuesday by cybersecurity firm McAfee.

“We have all seen high profile celebrities and public figures whose objectionable social media posts have emerged light years later, damaging their reputation, but this issue can affect anyone,” said Venkat Krishnapur, Vice-President of Engineering and Managing Director, McAfee India.

“Giving your social media accounts a routine clean-up can minimise the negative impact on corporate reputation. Consumers also need to ensure that they increase privacy settings on active accounts and shut dormant accounts, so information doesn’t get into the wrong hands,” Krishnapur added.

More than a quarter admitted to only deleting posts after a crisis and 25.7 per cent confessed to posting negative content about their current workplace.

For the study, McAfee studied the attitude of Indians towards maintaining social media hygiene.

McAfee revealed that 21.4 per cent Indians worry that content on their social profiles would negatively affect career/job prospects.

social media blockade survey
Most Indians said that they will support a temporary social media ban during a terror attack to fight fake news. Pixabay

On the positive side, the study also revealed that 46.9 per cent social media users in the country prefer to keep personal and work life separate.

The research involving 1,000 adults in India showed that of those aged 16-24, 31.4 per cent agree that social media content is important to their career prospects, compared to 24.6 per cent of those aged 35-44.

Of those aged 16-24, 41.1 per cent are very careful about social media content they post and are tagged in, as compared to 35.6 per cent of those aged 45-55.

Also Read: Software Giant Microsoft Redesigns its ‘To Do’ App

Despite this, Indians still have a lot of unsavoury content on their current social media channels, which is “Not Safe For Work” – comment that can be perceived offensive, wearing an embarrassing outfit, drunken behaviour, sleeping in a pavement or pub, swearing, vomiting, wardrobe malfunction, engaging in a fight, among others, the study revealed.

Shockingly, 25.3 per cent admitted they have no idea how to change their privacy settings on social media and over a third said they have not done anything to change privacy settings despite knowing how to.

This is especially important considering that 21.2 per cent know someone whose career or job prospects have been negatively affected by social media content they have posted, or been tagged in, and 40 per cent even admitted they could lose their job over their social media content. (IANS)

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People Use Hate Speech While Searching About Terrorism on Social Media

People post hate speech while seeking answers on terrorism

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Social Media terrorism
People often resort to using hate speech when searching about terrorism on a community group social media platform. Pixabay

People often resort to using hate speech when searching about terrorism on a community group social media platform, say researchers.

According to Snehasish Banerjee, lecturer at the York Management School, University of York, it appears seems that people are really curious to know about terrorists, what terrorists think, their ideas, etc.

“While portrayed as a threat to society and human civilisation by mainstream media, terrorists sell terrorism as freedom fighting via social networking sites and private messaging platforms,” said Banerjee.

“However, the actual workings of terrorism are largely shrouded in secrecy. For the curious, a convenient avenue to turn to is the community question answering sites”.

Community question answering sites (CQAs) are social media platforms where users ask questions, answer those submitted by others, and have the option to evaluate responses. Previous studies have mainly looked at terrorism-related data drawn from Facebook and Twitter, this was the first to examine trends on the CQA site, Yahoo! Answers.

Social Media terrorism
While portrayed as a threat to society and human civilisation by mainstream media, terrorists sell terrorism as freedom fighting via social media platforms. Pixabay

The University of York study explored the use of Yahoo! Answers on the topic of terrorism and looked at a dataset of 300 questions that attracted more than 2,000 answers. The questions reflected the community’s information needs, ranging from the life of extremists to counter-terrorism policies. Sensitive questions outnumbered innocuous ones.

A typical innocuous question was: Who exactly created ISIS?, while a more sensitive question was: Do you agree with Donald Trump that we should ban Muslims coming from countries seized by ISIS, Al Qaeda and other terrorists? According to the findings, sensitive questions were significantly more likely to be submitted anonymously than innocuous ones.

While no significant difference arose with respect to answers, the paper found that identities were seldom recognisable. Using names non-traceable to themselves, the community group users become embolden to use provocative, inflammatory or uncivil language. “We found that answers were laden with negative emotions reflecting hate speech and Islamophobia, making claims that were rarely verifiable,” said Banerjee.

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Users who posted sensitive questions and answers generally tended to remain anonymous.

“This paper calls for governments and law enforcement agencies to collaborate with major social media companies, including CQAs, to develop a process for cross-platform blacklisting of users and content, as well as identifying those who are vulnerable,” the authors noted in the Aslib Journal of Information Management. (IANS)