There has been a lot of controversy recently about secret surveillance programme Prism and how the US Government is monitoring our online activity. In reality however, the majority of us court online attention and regularly post updates about our personal lives for all to see.
Prism is an American programme that sifts data from Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Apple, Yahoo and Skype. We contribute to these platforms willingly, so it is not as though Prism is really delving that far to find the skeletons in our collective closets.
Social Media forms a large part of how big brands and companies communicate with their staff, competitors and potential clients; and more often than not it functions as a normal part of day to day life. New products, staff promotions, press relations are all displayed on social media.
From time to time however, big brands will hit the headlines because of social media mistakes. An errant tweet or Facebook post has often caused the downfall of an employee, or worse; a controversy that elevates into a PR disaster.
Perhaps some good has come out of this controversy, and Prism has actually done us all a favour. It has made us more aware of how we portray ourselves online and how important it is to think about our PR. Public image is something that all brands rely on and something that can cause individuals a lot of problems if they get it wrong.