Feature

Workplace

Armchair networking

Think twice before you delete all those requests from “annoying people” looking to befriend you on Facebook.com or LinkedIn.com, said Julia Angwin in The Wall Street Journal. “These acquaintances could come in very handy when looking for a job or a new career.” In fact, so-called weak ties may be a bigger asset in a job search than your closest circle of friends. “Your weak ties are your windows on the world,” says Stanford professor Mark Granovetter, adding that he accepts friend requests “if I know the person, whether I like them or not.”

But inviting more people into your social network raises the question of how much to reveal about yourself online, said Candice Choi in the Associated Press. Privacy settings can give you some control over who sees what. Yet “it’s always safer to assume anything you post online can become public.” Moreover, there can be a fine line between “friends” and would-be employers. “If you’re unsure about whether to include certain details, a good barometer is ask whether you’d list it on a résumé.” Even if you’re gainfully employed, some self-restraint is in order. “That means no logging on to your account to post updates about being bored at work.”

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