Top 10 Reasons To Value Your Privacy

“Kristen,” the high-priced prostitute involved in Eliot Spitzer’s resignation, is the latest civilian to remind us what those “private” settings on Internet profile sites are for. Once her real name got out, Ashley Alexandra Dupre (OK, it’s a stage name) became a lot more popular, as proven by a spike in MySpace page views. Luckily for Dupre, she has a music career to develop, but others weren’t so fortunate. Check out this list of people who should’ve kept the personal info to themselves.

10. A substitute teacher in New Jersey was fired for accepting friend requests from students on the MySpace page for his band, Ian of Fire. Fortunately, he had an internship at a record label to fall back on.

9. A California middle school student faced expulsion after posting graphic, anti-Semitic threats against a classmate. Meanwhile, 20 of his classmates were suspended for … looking at the page.

8. This sheriff’s deputy was let go after the department’s Youth Internet Crimes Unit found his MySpace page, which listed his favorite things as “female breasts, swimming naked and drinking heavily and often.”

7. Maybe this Texas art teacher shouldn’t have posted topless photos of herself on Flickr. Still, if I were a parent I’d be more concerned about her colleague, who told students about the site in order to get her in trouble.

6. A 27-year-old woman was denied her education degree and teaching certificate because of a Halloween photo on her MySpace page that allegedly promoted “underage drinking.” Because nothing says, “Hey kids, drinking is cool,” like a pirate drinking out of a plastic Mr. Goodbar cup.

5. The Miss Universe Organization stripped Miss Nevada USA Katie Rees of her crown after semi-nude photos taken at a nightclub were posted on a friend’s MySpace page. A year later she was arrested for assaulting a police officer. Good call, Miss Universe Organization.

4. A Wal-Mart cashier was fired for joking on his page that the country’s average IQ would increase if a bomb were dropped on the company’s stores. “I told them that this was crazy,” argued the employee. “It’s not like I have a fighter jet in my backyard to drop a bomb with.”

3. It wasn’t the heroin addiction that lost this meteorologist his job, it was a naked photo on MySpace. As the station’s general manager so astutely put it, “You don’t want to see Jamey Singleton getting out of the shower, you want to see him doing the weather.”

2. Carmen Kontur-Gronquist, former mayor of Arlington, Oregon, lost her job after posting a picture of herself in her underwear. Her defense: “That’s my space, that’s why they call it MySpace.” On the bright side, she’s now selling 500 autographed copies on eBay.

1. Bank intern misses work for a “family emergency.” Photo of bank intern dressed as Tinkerbell (taken at the Halloween party he skipped work to attend) shows up on Facebook. Bank intern’s boss sends photo to entire office.

Got your own favorite story of Internet-exposure woe? Tell us about it in the comments.