Let me state my position – I believe employers should research all sites when considering a candidate for hire. That includes social-networking sites. I know there are arguments for both sides of this new debate and I am not completely sold on my position. However, it appears that the trend among hiring managers is to use these sites in their hiring process:
The study, reported by Reuters, found that out of 3,169 hiring managers, 22 percent of them (about 698 managers) used social networking sites to find out information regarding potential candidates. This is up from 11 percent, or 349 managers, since 2006.
Even though 22 percent may not seem like a huge number now, one can only expect that number to continue to rise. The study revealed that 9 percent surveyed were currently not using social networking sites for screening purposes but plan to in the future.
The web is a public domain so I am of the opinion anything you put up there can or will be read by someone else. I think it is foolhardy to think otherwise.
If you read the rest of the article, you will find 4 suggestions for maintaining your privacy on these sites.