Busted! 5 things to never say on Facebook

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Busted! 5 Things to Never Say on Facebook
Photo Concepts/iStock

(CBS) - I asked my friends on Facebook and Twitter to fess up: What have they said on their social networks and regretted? No answers. My friends are smart. They don't share their sexcapades with followers (though some of us can't help but want to know them). They don't reveal their bathroom habits (though some of us find those kinds of updates utterly hilarious). 

My friends aside, others in cyberspace do tell. And to their detriment, their updates have led to criticism, embarrassment, even job termination. So don't fall into the category of Ms. TMI, here's a shortlist of what you shouldn't share...

That your job sucks.

If you say this, you could be fired (or at the very least, flagged). Such was the fate of Ashley Johnson, a waitress at Brixx Pizza in Charlotte, N.C. She worked one hour past her post because of a couple who ate lunch for three hours, leaving her a measly $5 for tip. She commented on her Facebook, "Thanks for eating at Brixx, you cheap piece of $%@& camper." A couple of days later, Brixx managers fired her for violating company policy against speaking disparagingly about customers and casting the restaurant in a negative light. Johnson is not alone. In fact, there are 114 members in the "Have you been fired because of Facebook?" group.

That you hate your ex.

In the event that you and your boyfriend get back together, or you and that friend you had a falling out with start talking again, you'll look like a total sucker. It's okay to let your emotions govern your thoughts -- you are human -- but keep your feelings off your Facebook until you've started to think clearly about said ex. The important thing to remember about social networks is that although you have the option to delete your comments, sometimes it can be too late. It's immediate and someone might've laid eyes on it before your retraction.

That you're going on vacay -- and then give the dates you're away.

Sister, you could be robbed. A study by the Co-Operative Travel found that thieves scan social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter for folks in targeted neighborhoods before they strike. Not telling your online friends when you'll be away is like leaving your lights on. And while we're on the subject of thieves, for goodness sake, stop with the birthday tributes. You're only making life easier for identity thieves.

That you love yourself.

In fact, don't give any indication that you're your biggest fan. Your followers will only think the opposite. It's the biggest barometer of insecurity. Researchers at the University at Buffalo also found that women who base their self-worth on appearance and what people think of them tend to upload pictures very frequently. Researchers did not go into detail about what the frequent updating of pictures were of, but I can only imagine that many were gratuitous self-portraits -- with arms stretched, taken at an angle, while maintaining a pout.

That you're mean.

No one likes a bully. Saying mean things about people can only make you undesirable -- for potential employers, dates, friends and strangers. Did you hear the story about that teacher who posted a photo of her student mocking her hairstyle? The 7-year-old asked her mom to decorate her hair with Jolly Ranchers. Cute to some, not to the teacher. Word is, the teacher was never fired, but many think she should have been. For now, people will just rag on her for being so cruel.

  • Ysolt Usigan

    Ysolt Usigan is the editor of lifestyle and technology for women at CBSNews.com

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