Many of my potential clients are scared to file for bankruptcy protection because they do not want anyone to know. In years past, it was not uncommon for the local newspapers to list the names of local people who had filed for bankruptcy protection. This archaic system is no longer done in most states. That being said bankruptcy filings are public information. I tell most of my bankruptcy clients that although their filing is public information, unless someone has access to PACER or some other system that checks bankruptcy filings, their friends or family will most likely never know they filed for bankruptcy unless they tell them. In addition, although there will be other bankruptcy filers at the trustee hearing, there is a low probability a debtor will see anyone at the hearing they know.
Finally, the only people that will probably know about the bankruptcy filing is future creditors who ask about it on their credit application and future employers. The older the bankruptcy filing is, the less of an impact it will have on your credit or with future employers.