The Monkey House: Your Boss Wants Your Facebook Password

Cullen Mclane

In our constantly evolving technological world, social networking is becoming more and more prevalent. This very newspaper is on Facebook! That’s right; we have reached the point where even inanimate pieces of paper with words on them have Facebook pages. If even newspapers have Facebook pages, one can imagine that even more people do. Everyone and their dog is on that website. Seriously, there are several dogs on there.

Now, many people see it as a way to stay updated on the events of your friends’ lives at all times regardless of where said friends may be. It sounds all well and good. But of course, when something goes on the internet, any idiot can see it (unless of course proper privacy measures are taken, which often are not). So it is only natural of course, that one can easily use Facebook to get a deeper look into a person’s character. So if one was to go to a job interview, one could act all fancy and professional, but the manager could do a quick Facebook search and find hundreds of pictures of the potential candidate being a complete and utter moron. (This is because no one really puts pictures of anything else up there.) Now, of course, it’s easy to alter the settings so Joe Schmoe can’t find your Facebook page, but potential bosses still want to know this stuff. So a disturbing new trend among potential employers is to ask for peoples’ Facebook passwords. Does this even need a news article to explain why that’s a terrible idea?

Facebook itself is against the notion. “If you are a Facebook user, you should never have to share your password, let anyone access your account, or do anything that might jeopardize the security of your account or violate the privacy of your friends,” said Erin Egan, the websites’ chief privacy officer. “As a user, you shouldn’t be forced to share your private information and communications just to get a job.” That’s all well and good, but it’s doubtful that any employers really care if Facebook wants them to get peoples’ password. It’s not like there’s anything they can actually do to stop the practice, since it is technically a mutual agreement between the employer and the employee. The employee just happens to be in a “give their boss access to their private life and the private life of all their friends” position if they want to get a job.

For centuries, people have lead lives outside of the workplace, and if it isn’t affecting the management, it’s really no business of said management what those outside lives entail, now is it?  Not to mention the fact that being able to go into your account would let any potential employers access your information, and there’s so much potential for such power to be abused. Really, giving an employer such information is basically agreeing to devote your entire life to the job. Maybe some people have that kind of passion, but any employer that essentially wants to own your life is one I’d stay away from.

There is also of course the simple option of not putting anything stupid on Facebook, but let’s not kid ourselves, that ship sailed long ago for the vast majority of America.