[LINK] the ghosts on social media

Jan Whitaker jwhit at janwhitaker.com
Sat Jan 16 11:07:03 AEDT 2010

Interesting article on use of impersonation to check out people as 
'friends' on social media sites. examples are in sport and investment 
banking to check out the character (and drug use) of potential 
draftees and employees.

How social networking created a legal and ethical minefield



January 16, 2010

Now that the opportunities to blab to the world - even unwittingly - 
are flourishing faster than we can count, companies are worried their 
brands are being damaged by employees making personal revelations on 
social networks. Joel Gibson reports.

Australian sports stars who complain about the omnipresent gaze of 
the public and media should count themselves lucky their own 
administrators are still onside.

It is a luxury some athletes no longer enjoy in the US, where at 
least three NFL franchises have reportedly taken to spying on 
potential employees, using a dastardly form of online entrapment 
known as the ''ghost profile''.

It works thus: club is considering paying large amounts of money to 
promising player in the annual draft; club impersonates young female 
fan with large assets on Facebook and MySpace, befriending player; 
club gains access to player's profile and pictures and searches for 
any sign of future headaches in the form of drug, sex or crime scandals.

They are called ghosts, a source told Yahoo! Sports, because "once 
the draft is over, they disappear''. Justin Smith, creator of the 
Insidefacebook blog, says the practice is also being used in 
white-collar industries such as investment banking, where good 
character and a sense of judgment are seen as being paramount (if not 
a sense of privacy or ethics).

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
jwhit at janwhitaker.com
blog: http://janwhitaker.com/jansblog/
business: http://www.janwhitaker.com

Our truest response to the irrationality of the world is to paint or 
sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
~Madeline L'Engle, writer

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