Do you “friend” work colleagues on Facebook? Then you’re now in more danger of oversharing. The culprit: Microsoft Outlook Social Connector.
Social Connector pulls in the latest status updates from your social networking sites — MySpace, LinkedIn, Windows Live and now Facebook — to your emails when your colleagues open them in Outlook 2007 or 2010.
Here’s how it works. You send your colleagues a meeting agenda, and in the window below the message they see your profile picture and status updates from the social network sites where you are “friends.” That Farmville notice from a few minutes ago. There. Party pictures on Facebook from the weekend before. There. And if your LinkedIn account is tied to Twitter, they’ll also see your tweets.
So if you haven’t already, you might want to think about putting all of your work colleagues into one group in Facebook (access by clicking on “Friends” and the then “Create a List”) and then setting your privacy settings as you see fit.
Despite the potential pitfalls, I’ve found Outlook Social Connector to be very helpful. I often like to go back and re-read earlier email threads before replying to a message. And since I don’t always keep up with my various social networking accounts, it provides a quick and easy way to focus on one person’s activities without getting sucked into everyone’s updates.
Outlook Social Connector is integrated into Outlook 2010 and you can download it as a plug-in for Outlook 2007.