Tuesday, November 20, 2012

FACEBOOK PRECAUTIONS


Sandra here with a pot of chocolate velvet coffee going.  Grab a cup, or if you prefer another beverage there is a lovely sideboard here with iced tea, fruit juice and sparkling water.

And listen up.

Social media is a reality and necessity for today's authors. In my contracts lately it is a requirement to have a social media presence.  If you read Sarah Ladd’s blog about Facebook earlier this fall, you'll know it is a must when pitching to editors and agents.  They will be looking you up and wanting to know what kind of presence you have.




If you are a published author now or plan to be, you will need a social media presence to become known, market and sell your books and to get your "brand" out there.

But is it safe?

As with everything in life there are dangers to look out for. Most of us, especially if we're relatively unknown are pretty safe.  But are you aspiring to be on the best seller list?  A famous author?

Then start now to take precautions to protect  yourself.

A person I know works for the State Attorney’s office and is in training specifically to learn about the dangers of the Internet and social media.   When I heard this, I asked if I could interview him for information for this blog post.  As a point of interest, he looked up my name and found out when and where I was born, where I live, my phone number, address, etc and learned of my travel plans.  Yikes I have already posted all over the place my email address, my phone number and my travel plans.  A criminal can look up my address with my phone number and make his/her own plans.  Is it too late to fix this before I become FAMOUS???

Here is a list of precautions to take when making your social presence.

1. WHAT YOU PUT ON THE INTERNET IS THERE FOREVER

For some of us--like me—it’s a little too late for this precaution.  Because whatever you put on the Internet is there FOREVER.

Haven't we seen on the news already of politicians who have to live down a photo or experience from a wild party in their youth?



Oh dear, I know we posted some wild parties ourselves with Captain Jack.  Blast, I knew I shouldn't have snuck off with him. And thank goodness no one with a camera got near us.  Because we can look up those past blogs from days, months and even years ago.  And Ruthy and Tina would find out who played those jokes on them. yikes

Oh well.  It was fun.

2. DON’T POST PERSONAL INFORMATION

The obvious precautions-no phone number, email address, birthdate, place of birth, etc.

But what about your name?  Here are some sites where you can look up people by name. Not only that, you can find out  your address, birthdate, when and where you went to school :

Pipl
Classmates.com
AnyWho
Whitepages.com
BirthDatabase.com
ZABASEARCH
military.com

While this can be fun to research your family ancestors, find lost family or friends or find info on yourself, you still have left yourself exposed online.

The above I had heard of before, but here are some other precautions:

Don’t name friends or family members
Don’t name past schools you attended
Don’t talk about what church you belong to now or in the past
Don’t post when and where you are traveling
Don’t post your regular schedule such as regular meetings you attend

Oops!  I’ve done almost all of the above.  Thankfully I have been careful about family and friends.


Speaking of friends:  When you post on Facebook to your private connections, your post can still get out there.  If your friend comments back, then that post can be read by all of that person’s friends.  So you may think only a select group is reading what you post, but more than likely it is being read by others not on your list.

Law enforcement officers are trained to find people they are looking for.
They get on Net Dectective, put in the name and under “check for” they put:

County Jail Inmate Search
Sex Offender Registry Search
Most Wanted Criminals & Fugitives
Find the RIGHT lawyer

You suspense authors-isn’t this information getting your mental juices going?

There are Geneology records also:

If they can find you online, so can others.

Did you know that if someone puts an area code in a search on MySpace, they can find where you have posted your phone number.  Here’s how to find out who listed their phone number in area code 206.
In Google search engine type:
"my phone number is" 206 site:myspace.com

Anywhere in MySpace you've mentioned your phone number it will come up.  Try it.
You can also type this phrase on Facebook’s search

Try typing your name in these Search Engines and see all the places you turn up:

Google
Yahoo!
Yippy
Dogpile
SurfWax
Alltheweb


If you’ve ever been mentioned in a local newspaper you can be located on these sites.  Watch out Ruthy.  Your rooster made you famous.  Or should I say infamous?

NewsLink
www.AreaConnect.com
www.nytimes.com


3.   USE A FAKE NAME ON FACEBOOK AND/OR MYSPACE

Too late for many of us.  But if you are concerned about you or your children there are ways to delete these programs.  It isn’t always easy but if you follow this link, Eric Griffith wrote an article with detailed instructions for 30 popular sites.
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2386458,00.asp


4. DISABLE  GEOTAGGING ON YOUR SMART PHONE

If you have geotagging enabled on your smart phone, which you would if you use your GPS feature, every time you take a picture with your camera, it records the exact location of where you photographed that picture.

If you want more detailed information about this danger and how to disable it, go to this article by Tom Retterbush’s Posterous

This is one feature you should warn your children about.  It’s rather scary.  And hey, you suspense authors-another great source for a suspense novel.

After reading this can anyone determine where our motorhome is located?







So yes, we can use social media to our advantage as long as we are careful and take precautions to protect ourselves and our families. Its just like taking a walk in the mall—don’t leave your purse sitting unattended and men, tuck your wallets in inside pockets.  It doesn’t mean you can’t take that walk in the mall. It just means be careful.  Same thing for social media.  These dangers aren’t meant to scare you away, but to teach you how to be careful.

Post a comment on ways you’ve discovered to protect yourself and be eligible to win one of the Seeker books on my bookshelf or a hardbound gift copy of PRICE OF VICTORY.




And with Thanksgiving coming up and with all the baking going on to prepare for it, I know you're saving your calorie count for that day.  So let me offer you a platter of fresh cut veggies with a dip made of Greek Yogurt.  A platter of fresh cut fruit including sliced apples (and for you North-easterners this includes several varieties to tempt your palette)  fresh pineapple, yummy pears, raspberries, melon balls and grapes.

Okay, okay,  I'll put out a platter of Sees candy too.  The chocolate will give you a quick boost.


And if you're shopping for Christmas presents this week, be sure to remember purchasing books not only supports your favorite industry, but they also make terrific gifts.

Releasing December 11th



110 comments:

Helen Gray said...

Sandra, this is information to save. Thank you for doing the research for us.

There's plenty of coffee to go with your bountiful spread!

Helen

Melissa Jagears said...

I don't think using a fake name online will work with being an author thing nor not putting your email out there. :)

be careful what shows up in pictures, background signs, children's school uniforms, etc. can clue people in on where you're at.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure even if you don't get online you can avoid people finding out where you live. My grandmother in law, many years dead, never logged onto a computer, but I 've found her address before googling around--there aren't many Jagears out there and well, that makes it easy to find me!

Tip, if you have gmail or a google+ account, log out to search your name through google, otherwise you may get scared that someone can see something that should only be visible to you! But if you're logged in, the search results show you what you can see (which includes photos on a private blog--about scared myself :) Not that those photos are bad, just my baby in diapers on a blog meant just for grandmas :))

Terri said...

Thanks for the post. Great for suspense authors, but scary for regular folks.

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

First- every time I see the cover of your new book, I sigh. Love the color, love the form.

And this all reminds me of Julie Hilton Steele.

Why?

I was posting on a yard sale site on facebook for members of my town, who wanted vintage items.

Julie mentioned she loved an item I had commented on.

What?? How did she see that? She's a-way over there and I'm here in west podunk! But she could see it in a little ticker on the sidebar.

Weird. Mine doesn't have that. I must have signed up for the non-stalker version.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jill Weatherholt said...

This is great information, Sandra, also a little scary. I'll definitely want to check out Eric Griffith's article.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Morning folks. Didn't mean to scare you.
Just want you to be aware and careful.

Truthfully the only time this is going to be a problem is if you're a criminal and/or if you become super famous.

But it is wise to warn your children and be watchful.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Helen, Thanks for the coffee.
You're always there for us. smile

Sandra Leesmith said...

Thanks Melissa for more helpful tips.

Your grandmother's info is there? Wow.

And your babies are going to have a word with you when they grow up. chuckle.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Yes Terri, This is great stuff for suspense authors. I've read some great stories with Internet "tension and conflict".

Just reading about this was putting ideas into my head and I don't even write suspense. chuckle.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Virginia, That must have been a surprise to know that Julie was seeing your ad.

Thanks for the compliment on the cover. I'm really tickled with it also. So light and fun.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Jill. Like I said, don't want you to be scared. Just careful.

There are many things to be scared of but it doesn't mean we aren't supposed to use them. Driving a car is dangerous, yet we all drive all over the place. We just learn how to be careful and safe.

That's what I'm trying to convey.

Andrea Strong said...

I avoided Facebook for years for this very reason. This post makes me want to check all my security settings.

One author I know refers to her children often on her blog, but uses nicknames for them, or so I presume, since she calls one of them Doodle. I've always thought that was wise.

On an unrelated note, my husband is having surgery today. Prayers would be appreciated.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Andrea, Great advice. Nicknames are great.

Most of us refer to our husbands and boyfriends as dh which I learned stands for dear heart.

Hope it isn't like the Southern term bless your heart. LOL

Praying for your dh today. ANd for the doctors, staff and for YOU. Hugs

C.E. Hart said...

Great eye-opening post! It certainly gives me a new perspective of social media.

Like many of the other posters have said, it is kind of scary when you think out all the scenarios that can happen, but knowledge is power. Thank you for empowering us!

Also - thanks for the Seas chocolate. Mmm Makes me want to go back to San Fran. :P

Glynna Kaye said...

Hmmmm. Those look like ponderosas, Sandra, so the RV must be somewhere in the High Country?

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi C,E.

Yes, you said it perfectly. Knowledge is power.

Social Media is useful to us authors. But use it wisely. That's all I'm sayin'.

Yes, Sees candy is from San Francisco. Its my favorite because my Grandma used to always buy it for me. Makes me think of her.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Glynna, Yes, it is in the high country?

And it is in Ponderosa country.

But what state? There is a way you can tell if you're computer savvy--which I'm not. LOL

Julie Lessman said...

YIKES, SANDRA ... and I thought I was paranoid before!!! :|

WOW ... awesome (and important!!) post, my friend. However, I would like to go on record RIGHT NOW that I'd rather not be found in a search engine called "Dogpile," please. :)

SEEKER FRIENDS, PLEASE NOTE!!!!!!!!!!

The Price of Victory -- ONE OF MY FAVORITE BOOKS, LOVED IT -- is on sale for $2.99 on Amazon Kindle, so PLEASE take advantage.

AND GUESS WHAT??? Sandra's newest book, CURRENT OF LOVE, which releases Dec. 11, is ONLY $3.99 ON KINDLE and $7.16 in paperback!!! I've already preordered mine because I KNOW it will be awesome!!

IMPORTANT NOTE!!!! Something I just found out is that on Amazon, you can send an e-book or a gift card for an e-book as a Christmas present and SPECIFY THAT IT NOT BE DELIVERED TILL CHRISTMAS!!!!

Great post, Sandra ... can't wait to "set sail" with Current of Love, my friend.

Hugs,
Julie

DebH said...

ah, great post today. yes, a tad scary - but the good kind of scary that makes you want to be careful.

my work requests i keep a low internet profile, so i don't have a facebook account and i try to keep my information elsewhere at a minimum. still, i know there's a lot of info about me floating about the ether of the 'net.

i always appreciate reminders on how to be wise with social media. thanks!

Cara Lynn James said...

Good morning! Thanks for the coffee and delicious food, Sandra!

All this social media stuff is a little overwhelming and frightening!!! I think I'll go back in my cave and write a book. Thanks for the information.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Gee whiz Julie, You are amazing with your plugs. Thanks for the shout out.

ANd folks while you're on Amazon.

Check out JULIE'S BOOK

A LIGHT IN THE WINDOW

She's right. Books make great Christmas gifts.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Deb H. Yes, its just a matter of being wise and careful.


Social media is a terrific tool.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Cara, mia, Don't be afraid sweetie. Just be careful.

And I'm glad you go to your cave to write, but it is fun when you come out and play with us.

Piper Huguley said...

Sandra,

Thank you so much for this informative post. It is headed for the printer for a different reason. I only joined FB because my one and only asked me about it (I said no, but that won't deter him for much longer). I figured that I needed to get up to speed before he gets an account and starts to use it. Hopefully, I can shape it for my writing, but as of now, I have too many family members posting questionable information there. As a protection, I comment or like as little as possible.

Piper

Piper Huguley said...

Andrea,

A special prayer for you and your dh. Hope all goes well today.

Piper

Julie Steele said...

Sandra, thanks for sharing the information. I get very irritated by my phone asking for my location. Nope, not going to do it.
As someone who was stalked due to her previous job, I can tell everyone they need to be careful. You never know who might fixate on you. It seems far-fetched but it is not.

Many authors are now closing down their personal facebook pages and going to the author only ones. I wonder what vault their personal information is stored in.

Melissa Jagears and I are forming a Virginia Carmichael stalking club. Anyone else want to join?

Peace, Julie

Rose said...

Hi Sandra,

This is great information. I always try to limit putting anything personal on the Internet but it only takes one slip up....

I'm printing this out.


Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Piper, Thanks for the advise. Yes, it is best to be brief. smile

Thanks for the prayers for Andrea too.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Julie, Wow a stalking club. But it is pouring down rain where she is at. No thanks. Maybe later in the summer.

How scary to have been stalked. Is this story in one of yours?

Author pages are great.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Rose, Thanks for sharing. No slip-ups. smile

Have a great holiday.

Melanie Dickerson said...

Thanks for scaring me half to death, Sandra!!! LOL!!!
Actually, if I ever get rich and famous enough to have to worry about stalkers and kidnappers, I guess I will just have to hire a bodyguard, because I'm sure my information is already out there for all the crazies that might want it. But I am somewhat cautious. I used to never mention my kids' names on facebook, and I still don't post their pictures on my facebook pages, although I am very proud of them! They a sweet and beautiful. But I don't feel comfortable advertising them to my 2,000 facebook friends, most of whom I don't know personally.

Thanks for all the tips, Sandra!!!

Melanie Dickerson said...

Oh, and I want to join the Virginia Carmichael stalking club!!! Me me me!!!

Anonymous said...

Sandra,

I always wondered what dh stood for and now I know.

I googled my name and this is the first thing it pulled up:

Connie Queen, a writer, mentor, and inspirational speaker, moved to Mexico in March 2010. She and her husband, Ross, decided to turn seemingly adverse...

Of course, this is not me but could be confusing if I ever get published.

The internet is really scary when you think of all things that could go wrong.

I want to be one of those people even Garcia from Criminal Minds can't find any info on. But then an editor/reader couldn't find me either so I appreciate all the info.

Connie Queen

karenk said...

an excellent posting...thanks for sharing :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Sandra Ardoin said...

Gee thanks, Sandra. I'm in the middle of reading Terri Blackstock's Predator and already quaking in my socks. :-)

I try not to post anything on social media that reveals personal information (other than some of my hobbies, etc.), but I think it's pretty much impossible. How do you make yourself interesting enough for others to follow (the purpose of social media) and keep your "life" to yourself? It's a good bunch of fence walking.

Jeanne T said...

Sandra, what a great post! It is so hard to keep completely under the radar when online. Correct me if I'm wrong, but places like FB and Twitter require an e-mail address. Is that right? So, we have an e-mail addy for business interactions, in which I've included FB and Twitter. And, we have a personal address.

I never use my kids' names (I need to check photos). Because of our family situation, I have some photos of my kiddos up. I think I'm going to re-tag them so only family members can see them.

Thanks for the great advice. I'm kind of scared to see just how much is "out there" on me. But, maybe I'll take the plunge and check it out. And see what changes I can make.

Thanks, Sandy! VERY informative post.

Anonymous said...

Hey Sandra,

Informative post. You really have to be digilent and not give out too much info.

Unfortunately, I wonder if there's really anyway to stop the information from getting out.

We all have bank accounts and debit cards and phones. And everything is so digitally connected. I pay to protect my computer and still get hit.

Don't mean to sound too pessimistic.

Tina P

Sandra Leesmith said...

Melanie, I didn't mean to SCARE you. Just PREPARE you.

And a body guard sounds interesting. Hero material for sure. smile

Virginia. Beware.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Connie Queen, Wow, you found all that stuff?

WEll at least you can warn the editors when you submit.

I'm sure they are aware also of the stuff out there.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Waving at KarenK

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Sandra A. Good question. We do want to be interesting, but careful. A tightrope for sure.

Enjoy that book. smile And remember its fiction.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Jeanne T, Great tip you gave us.

Yes, I think its smart to have several email addies for different uses.

I do the same thing with credit cards. That way if one gets compromised, I don't have to switch everything. And I have only one I use online. Helps.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Tina P,

You aren't pessimistic. Just realistic.

I doubt we can ever stay totally neutral unless we become a hermit.

But don't underestimate the power of prayer.

Marianne said...

Scary, but for me as an avid reader, i love knowing about you...guess personally i don't use those media much...mostly to comment on others posts and share them. Thanks for the info, and if i can't find anything about you, i know why! i already have a copy of Price of Victory.

reviewingnovelsonline.blogspot.ca

Lyndee said...

Hi Sandra,
Great info and now I want to go hide under a rock, but I can't because I'm on facebook, lol. I have always been keenly aware of this issue, but still, last year when someone I barely know managed to lift one of my photos and put it on her facebook page without asking me, well, it was unsettling and I realized that everything out there is open game. Scary. Policing that site is hard because they constantly change the rules. Thanks for the heads up on some things I didn't know!

Congrats on the new book!

Andrea Strong said...

I'm in! I finished Season of Joy Just now in the waiting room. It kept me from housework for a while yesterday. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

DH has been in the OR for about an hour and a half. Hopefully it won't be much longer. Thanks for all the prayers.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Marianne, I agree. The fun part about social media is all the new friends. I love, love all the friends we have met here in Seekerville. How fun is that?

Happy reading.

Janet Dean said...

Excellent post, Sandra! Looking forward to reading your new book Current of Love!

Not much point in using a fake name if we want to use social media to promote. I try not to give personal info but sites still manage to get it.

Thanks for the healthy goodies and chocolate!

Janet

Janet Dean said...

Andrea, praying for your husband's surgery. Hopefully over soon!

Janet

Sandra Leesmith said...

Thanks for sharing Lyndee. How did you find out about the picture?

And again, I don't want to SCARE you folks. Just PREPARE you.

ANd I agree about FB. Every time I get something figured out, it changes. LOL What a wonderful life. smile

Sandra Leesmith said...

THanks for the update Andrea. STill praying.

CatMom said...

Wow--thanks for all this important info., Sandra. I agree with being careful wherever you are--online or somewhere in person. ~ I think it's especially important for people on FB to post photos of vacations after they return home--rather than letting everyone know they're away from home. ~ YUM--the fruit (and candy!) you brought for us sounds wonderful--for some reason I've been hungry for pears lately, so I'll have one of those--thanks! And thank you again for this post today! Hugs from Georgia, Patti Jo :)

CatMom said...

p.s. Just saw Andrea's post--Praying for your husband! ~ Blessings, PJ

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Patti Jo, Thanks for the hugs all the way from Georgia.

And the pears are yummy. You won't be disappointed.

Great tip to post trip after the fact.

Jan Drexler said...

Thanks for all this info, Sandra. It's good to know what we're involved in!

I was waiting in line at the post office yesterday, and ahead of me was a man from church. Now, I know he and his wife are heading south for the winter later this week, but we both took the precaution of not talking about it in a public place.

The same goes on the internet, doesn't it? Even though we're at home on our computer, we have to pretend we're having a conversation in front of a hundred other people who can hear all the juicy details.

Unless we want them to hear the juicy details....

Love the See's candy!

Sandra Leesmith said...

Jan that reminds me of a time I was in line at the grocery store. I had been taking care of a friend's dog and it had shed all over my clothes. I went to the store and two ladies ahead of me were commenting in Spanish about all the dog hair.

Well they didn't know I spoke Spanish and were so embarrassed when I responded to their comment and made a joke about the dog hair.

Goes to show you you have to watch what you say everywhere. LOL

Anonymous said...

LOL. Sandra, I've always wanted to be able to speak Spanish. There are too many times when you walk by, and men will speak in Spanish. You just know sometimes they're talking about you and would love to respond.

Love it.

Connie

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hey Connie, That would be funny.

I learned Spanish when I was teaching the students English. I wanted to know what they were saying about me. Ha ha. Turned out to be a good thing. We taught each other.

Myra Johnson said...

Wow, Sandra! I have been semi-aware of a lot of this and have tried to be careful. But there's only so much a person can do and still have any kind of Internet presence.

Bur I am definitely going back through your post later to double-check areas where I could be even more proactive about Internet safety!

Myra Johnson said...

BUT. Typing on iPad again.

Mary Connealy said...

I have such a great paranoid murder mystery in my head about this very thing.
There is a chat room component. I was in a chat room with Sandra and others on Writer's Space this week.

We're lucky we got out alive.

(well, alive-ish!)

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Lyndee said...

Hi again, Sandra. I found out about the photo because, ironically, FB sent me a note that 'so and so' used my photo! Don't know if FB still notifies you when something is accessed, but that time it did and I recall it to be about a year ago because it was a fall photo.

Lyndee said...

PS, has Seekerville been spammed?

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

I was scared of the stalking club (Melanie, you sweet thing, just try it) until I read that Sandra knows it's pouring rain here.

NOW how does she know that? Huh? Huh?

Sandra, the top stalker.

Plus, I bet as soon as I stopped postig pics of all my desserts, you guys would lose interest and wander away.

Note to self: Make more brownies and post pictures!

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Andrea, praying for your husband.

I'm so thankful we live in a country that has great doctors, but none of that is fun.

Praying for your peace and his comfort and quick healing!

And your note made my day. :)

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Sandra, on the Spanish! So funny. I think most people have clued in here that anyone can speak Spanish so they're pretty careful.

But one of my friends spent some years in Dakar, the capital of Senegal. She's blond, blue eyed, all-American. She lived there as a teen. She had soem friends who spoke a native tribal language and became semi-fluent.

She went to the Seattle market and heard some Senegalese men commenting about her body in their tribal language, which she knew.

She turned around and gave them the 'what-for'.

They were so scared, they thought she was a witch and ran away!

Funny and sad.

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Lyndee, yes, looks like spam.

Oh, the irony.

Lyndee said...

Hey, you take on FB they take on you, lol.

Lyndee said...

Prayers to your husband and family, Andrea.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Myra, Glad you'll be checking.

And typing on an ipad? AT least its easier than a phone. My fingers are too big.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Mary, Mary, Why am I NOT surprised.

You of all people will have several stories stewing after this post. LOL

Hey do you want to talk to my friend who gave me this info. He's full of great info.

Missy Tippens said...

Sandra, a great post! I never post about travel online--only do so after I get back. I never name my kids on my public pages. I try to be very cautious!

Melissa Jagears said...

I have a setting on my facebook for my kids that's a custom list called "Allowed to see my kids" that I use when I post their photos.

I think we've got some momentum on the Stalk Virginia club! Woohoo, buy some stock in buttons since she'll be inspiring us all to make button trees this week!

Missy Tippens said...

LOL, Melanie! I often refer to "my Facebook friends who are really strangers." My kids (who shall remain nameless!) make fun of me. :)

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Lyndee, I don't think it has been spammed, but I wouldn't open any links from people you don't recognize.

I don't do that with emails either.

Sometimes if they hack you they use your email address and send emails. The one I fell for was from a friend and it said look at the baby picture. Well that friend always has cute pictures, so I opened it and it was a hack.

When that happens, just change your password and warn everyone.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Yes, Virginia, Tremble, especially with Melanie in charge of the club. chuckle

And how funny about your friend who knew Sengalese. Such an uncommon language and they thought she was a witch. Toooo funny.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Missy, I do know that about you. You are always careful to never mention names when you talk about family. Good going.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Button trees???? Melissa? Virginia?

Okay I'll bite.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Virginia, we DO need those pictures of desserts.

Melissa Jagears said...

Did you know that you can see your facebook profile as the public would see it?

They keep changing how to do it. (grrrr) but currently it's
Go to your profile page
Click the little gear button at the top right
Press View As
Then either press the blue "public" hyperlink to see what is public
or type in the name of the weird uncle you don't want to know everything and see if what is available to him is what you want available. :)

Melissa Jagears said...

Sandra, Virginia has been painting trees on wood and gluing on buttons as embellishments lately. I know this because I'm a stalker. muhhhahahahhahaha

How she has time for so many arts and crafts is amazing to me. I've all but given up arts and crafts, I sometimes sneak in knitting a dishcloth when I get a hole in one--buts it's purely practical arts and crafts for me at the moment.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hey Melissa, Thanks for that helpful hint.

It amazes me how different it is on your computer and on your friends. When my friends were teaching me how to use it, I really saw the differences. We would both be on sitting side by side. Very eye opening.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hmmmm, Stalking can be informative. Great craft ideas. hmmmmmmm

Jackie said...

Hi Sandra,

Great info. I know a man who discovered he had a grandchild from FB. Unfortunately the family had pretty much written him off and it was NOT a good thing.

I had to laugh because as soon as I saw your Net Detective link I thought I could use it in a book, and then you said pay attention suspense authors.

Thanks so much for sharing these tips.

Jackie L.

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Ooooh, Sandra, if you're on pinterest, ssearch for button crafts or art.

WOW! Fun stuff!

I really want to do a button 'initial' but every time I try it ends up looking like Gnommish. Elvish. Some language that does not really exist.

And crafts are to me what showers are to Melissa, plotting-wise.

When my hands are busy and creative centers engaged, I get good dialogue and plot twists. :)

And if it didn't, I'd probably still doodle around with crafts. I'm not a 'writing is my everything' person. I have to feed the muse! :D

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

In all seriousness, I just went and put my pics to 'friends'. They were on 'everyone can see it' mode.

And my posts. Weird.

Melissa Jagears said...

virginia, Facebook no longer has a default post mode. Like at one time, your posts and pictures would all default to your default, let's say "friends", any time you post.

Well now, it defaults to your last post. So lets say you're posting to your friends, but you want your next post to be seen only by your "allowed to see kids list" well unless you remember to change it back on the next post you're limiting it to that list indefinitely.

So sometime in the past, you must have decided to let the public see something, and if you didn't post soon afterwards and remembered to change it back to friends, FB just keeps posting everything afterward as public.

There's been times I've wondered why I got so few comments on something that would have likely gotten comments and realized I'd previously put out a status viewable only to my local people list and forgot to turn it back on to friends. It's annoying.

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

That makes sense! Becuase I'm sure that I didn't want everything set to 'public'. But somewhere I must have done one that way. :O

Jenny Blake said...

sandra this is good advice for everyone. I dont post alot of personal info except to people I know. Have set the privacy tight and dont include address or phone number etc. also care what I post.
for me unless I put ausjenny in the search engine it takes a bit to find me although now I come up as Jenny Blake may be different but there is an author with my name and a few other famous ones.
I think with the email its easy to have a gmail one or one that is just for business etc. Like very few have my isp email but most will use gmail which is easy to filter.
I am not telling you I am in the city so that you dont know I am not at home.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Virginia and Melissa, You two are a wealth of information today. woo hoooooo

I didn't know about all the public/private settings that needed to be changed each time. I just thought they were set.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Jackie, Go girl with those story ideas. You could even get one from the facebook guy. What a premise.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Good hints Jenny, Those are good ideas to incorporate in your planning.

Ausjenny is a great handle because it also tells us what country you are from. Really perks up the interest. smile

Julie Steele said...

Praying for your husband and you too, Andrea!

Peace, Julie

Ruth Logan Herne said...

I think the sum of this is that there really is no hiding...

I found a relative who left the family thirty years ago by typing his name into Google.

He'd moved twice, never contacted anyone, and never used a computer. Doesn't believe in that nonsense.

But he spoke at a town meeting arguing against a new power facility coming into the area....

And there it was, part of the public record, name, address, phone number. And all I wanted to do was send him my books, show him what I was doing...

It took all of thirty seconds.

Sandra, what a great eye-opener this is! I know Jack doesn't mind the added notoriety to his spreadsheet, and being a romance writer, you know a good pirate when you see one! :)

I think we've got to be smart... I don't post vacations on facebook....

But I do use family pics on my blog because if someone gets that mad at me.... Oh my stars, why on Earth would they????.... I'm putting myself in God's hands.

Inherent risk in existence, right?

Ruth Logan Herne said...

Lyndee, I'm laughing at your discovery, but not in a mean way!

Erica Vetsch found "ME" a few years ago while researching her geneology... someone used my picture to put with "her" name....

And Erica contacted me about it.

Seriously, at my age I was honored beyond belief that anyone would want to use my pic!!! :)

But yeah, harvesting is something that goes on all the time. Makes you stop and think a little. But I refuse to worry about it... I also don't consider social media a huge help to marketing and sales. I figure the biggest help to marketing and sales is to write lots of books... blanket the market... get your name out there and get people talking about you, laughing with you.

But the "Finish the Book" mantra I shout from the hills??? That's the best way to market anything!

Anonymous said...

Good info for me, Sandra....stll trying to get up nerve to do FB!
Would love to read your book!
Jackie S.

jackie.smith[at]dishmail[dot]net

Jeanne T said...

ANDREA--prayed this morning, and I'll be praying for a good recovery. I hope surgery went well.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Ruthy, You are so funny.

And so right.

I've never seen any sales benefit from social media not that I do that much social media but certainly haven't had sales from the media I did do. LOL

Had fun though.

Captain Jack loves the notoriety. He's up for a party any time and he doesn't mind telling everyone everything.

And I love Seekerville. What's not to love about a bunch of friends.

And you're right about life. There is danger everywhere. I stand on Psalm 91.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Jackie, Be brave.

Sandra Leesmith said...

ANDREA, Julie and Jeanne have good questions. How is everything? We are all still praying.

Marissa said...

Those are some very good tips for Facebooking!!!

Happy Thanksgiving!

marissamehresman(at)aol(dot)com

Sandra Leesmith said...

Thanks Marissa, Happy Thanksgiving to you also.

Sandra Leesmith said...

Well Folks, Its been another fun day here in Seekerville. So happy to visit with you.

I'm off to bed as I get up early, but I'll check in the morning for more comments before I draw for the winner.

Have a BLESSED AND HAPPY THANKSGIVING. All of you.
One of the things I'm very thankful for is all of the friends we have here in Seekerville.

Mary Preston said...

This is rather scary I must say. It makes you think.

marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Sandra Leesmith said...

Yes, Mary, Its part of life. Just be smart about what you post. That's all we're saying.

Island Fever said...

These are all good tips. I have been very careful, but I found myself on a Google listing where they have my middle name posted! I have NEVER used my middle name, just my initial. It's not on my social Security card, not my license, nothing but my birth certificate. So, how did they get this information - and then post it!? Be very careful.
Betty
Author of Island Fever - http://amzn.com/B009RCO02G

shelia hall said...

Remember never to put your address, birthdate or school you attended or they can get personal info on you! Also don't post any embaarassing photos

Veronica Sternberg said...

I don't have my year of birth, address, or phone # on facebook, and keep my privacy to friends.