1) Keeping personal stuff....PERSONAL!
Be if Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or other platforms, we often post many things. They could include pics, quotes, opinions, and news. That is perfectly fine. However, one thing that should not be posted are personal information. Once they get posted, they become viewable by the online community, and even if you do delete it, chances are that posted could've already been captured by someone else or shared amongst someone else's circles. Your business is supposed to be your business! Some information you post can eventually be used against you be it by your friends, enemies, or even a hacker.
2) Maintain contact with who you know
When online, make it a priority to only interact with people you KNOW! More often than not, we will get friend requests from people who we may have never heard of or seen before. It's fine to expand your circle and interact with people, just not with strangers. In most cases, some of these friend requests can be hackers, people looking to harm you, or fake individuals. If you don't know that person trying to connect with you, delete them immediately.
3) Avoid drama or arguing on social media
At some point, we all have come across disputes and arguments on social media, be it debates that took an ugly twist or the airing of grievances. Social media is not the place to settle scores or beefs with others. It has been said that discussing major things via text or online serves to only exasperate the situation. And in those cases, things could be taken out of context and misconstrued, causing further aggravation between the parties. Also, putting your issues to public display may serve as an invitation for others to chime in, thus leading the situation to become out of control. If you have a problem with someone, call them or meet face-to-face and air out your differences.
4) Never leave your profile unattended!!
One major mistake many people commit is leaving their social media profiles unattended in a public venue. Doing so serves as an invitation for others to go on and make posts that may slanderous in nature, all in the name of a good joke. From my personal experience, I have seen it done several times and was even the victim of it myself several years ago. If you need to go somewhere, make it a point to log off your accounts. Never leave it unattended for what may start out to be a "harmless joke" could turn into a major problem.
5) Be tolerant
Not everything we post will be accepted by everyone. Everyone has different views and perceptions of society and the world and what may be acceptable for one person, may not be the case for someone else. If someone feels uncomfortable by what you posted and requests that you delete it, be courteous enough to do so. Vice-versa, if someone else were to post something that you felt uncomfortable about, you would do the same. Mutual respect is important and so is tolerance to others as well.
These are some of the tips for how to play it safe on social media. Social media is an excellent way to express yourselves, get creative, showcase your work, and stay in touch with others. But it is imperative that all of it be done within proper constraints. Social media is a double-edged sword. It can help build bridges but can easily be used to destroy them. Be wise and smart in how you conduct yourself online.