May 16, 2012
Email is a part of daily life. A few companies trying to outlaw it aside, everyone uses it and deals with tons of mail every day. What many users of Social Media don’t think about is keeping that email separated from their personal email accounts via another address entirely.
There are many reasons to set up and keep a distinct email for all your social stuff, but the two main ones are:
– Anonymity: If you’re planning on creating a persona distinct from your real-world one, then you want to keep email from and/or about that persona distinct from email that you get for everything else. This also goes for the inevitable spam, “new feature” blasts and all the other garbage you *will* get whenever you sign up for a Social Media site/network. Keeping a different address just for your accounts means that you can ignore it whenever you need to, while your co-workers and friends can still get their messages to you on your “real” address.
– Company ownership: Following on from last week’s post, there is always the chance that you may change jobs at some point. Hopefully, that’s because you got a spectacular offer and voluntarily left. If you’re using Social Media in conjunction with your job, and then suddenly aren’t, will you still have access to your work email until you can shift everything off of it? For most of us, the answer is no, and that poses a major problem. By using a different email address that you control, you can get everything that doesn’t belong to the company off of it, then hand it over to them if they want it.
A cautionary tale to illustrate both points:
I was just listening to a story about a friend who had two co-workers quit. As is the usual case in these instances, he got to watch their email accounts in case a customer who didn’t realize they left reached out for something. He now knows way more than he ever wanted to about their social lives, and also knows that they’re trying very hard to change login information, addresses, etc. Why? Because they both used the company email address when signing up for Social Media sites and networks, and all those emails are still flowing in.
So, better safe than sorry. Sign up for another email address (possibly a free service like GMail or a low-cost fee-based option, your choice) and use that address for your Social Media stuff.