It’s the social etiquette no-no of today’s age, tagging someone in a social media post that they don’t align with or are likely to be embarrassed by. But if you feel you are helping and just want to catch their attention, why is there an issue?

It’s a fine line and just like days gone by where it was etiquette for a gentleman to never reveal a lady’s age (something I personally think should still be in place!) there are some things we don’t want to be held accountable over or “outed” on social media.

Let’s just say a friend has seen post on Facebook they think is hilarious and needs to be shared with you. In their enthusiasm they tag your name on said post, or share it to your timeline with your name tagged in it. Now, for the most part, this is a lot of harmless fun and a great laugh for you and your friends. Usually.

However, if you are wanting to be seen as a professional business owner or a person of good standing in your community (maybe you are running for government office or planning to do so) then a seemingly innocent “tag” of your name against a post that may be considered offensive/racist/sexist/inappropriate on any level, is not going to serve you well.

The time the line gets drawn in the sand the most is when it comes to teenaged children. Not all, but most, are highly unlikely to appreciate well meaning parents, aunties, uncles or family friends tagging them in old photos, or tagging posts that give away too much information or implication. Imagine the horror of great Aunt Maggie tagging you in an advertisement for acne cream or posting a photo of you stalkers in the bath at age two with the kids from next door?

The thing to remember here is that most of the pages we follow on Facebook are public, by default. It’s the way Facebook has established things. So if you are tagged on a page or if you tag someone else on a post on a public page, then everyone can see it. And this is where we open a whole other can of worms with potential employers, potential clients, or potential romantic partners seeing your name aligned with something that might not serve you well.

Yes, you can remove the tag. Yes, you can alter your settings so that you see them before they go further and do too much damage. But it’s tricky territory to navigate. Once something is out there on the Inter-webs it’s there for all to see. All it takes is one person to screen shot the post and your tag, or comments and there’s nothing you can do about it.

One final word – when in doubt, don’t do it!

Still unsure about when to tag, when not to tag, or how to ensure either you or your business are tagged unknowingly in inappropriate places? Hire a SMM to monitor your social media pages, help you learn about tagging and how to best make it work for you.

Special intro session offer until the end of this month: All new clients who engage Media Flair for 4 hours of Social Media posting throughout May will receive 2 hours free!