I've often been bemused (and yes, shocked - but then I'm easily shocked) by the blase way in which writers spill their thoughts online. I'm not advocating self-censorship, or any other kind of censorship, but the Internet is forever. As BL Ochman points out:
Even if something is removed from a site or blog, it can be found in the 55 billion pages archived on The Wayback Machine archives...the bottom line is, and always has been, if you don't want the whole world to see it, don't put it on the Internet.My very first Web site, circa 1997, is still drifting unanchored through cyberspace. I stopped paying for the hosting for that site many years ago, but it's still on various servers and comes up regularly for searches.
Please watch your words online. If you're trying to sell a novel, for example, don't complain about the numbers of rejections you've had - or about a specific editor or publishing house. Don't get into flame wars or arguments with other writers in discussion groups: editors read these groups too. Don't post anything on your blog or on a social networking site that you wouldn't want to read on the front page of a newspaper.
Expect that anything that you write online will be read by people forever. And that includes (supposedly private) email.