Monday, January 28, 2013

It's Simple: Keep Your Private Stuff off the Web!

The Internet is NOT, in any way, PRIVATE!
***No matter what you say

Okay, so your bank has figured out a way to “lock it down” and so have credit cards, but that’s just because they want YOUR money. Facebook wants someone else’s money, so you are useless to them, a number, a demographic.

The latest and greatest is the “All Rights Reserved” people are putting on their photos. While this does cover you in a lawsuit (kinda), do you really have the money to hire a lawyer and sue someone for using your image? It’s a protection for after the fact, after all your friends have linked, commented and shared your most embarrassing moment. What good does that to you? The way to really protect your image is a watermark across the photo so that people can’t use it. Of course, people will still probably share it…if it is funny enough. What’s the next step, protecting pictures of your cat? If you don’t want to risk it showing up somewhere else, don’t put it on the web...period. If you don’t want someone else to post it, don’t get your photo taken doing something stupid. Or, develop a sense of humor…learning to laugh at yourself might be the only way to survive in this data fishbowl we have created and participate in everyday

Every few days there is some huge paragraph that someone has come up with claiming your “rights” on the public forum of Facebook. It either gives some protracted list of things you need to do in order to ensure “others” can’t see your photos or it states your explicit instructions to keep all your information private. Here’s the thing, if you want your information private, don’t use Facebook. If you don’t want to be tagged in photos, then unfriend people who do that to you. All the multi-paragraph statements do is annoy your friends for the space they take up on the newsfeed (love Twitter for the 140 character limit at that moment!). Admit it…you’ve stolen other images before that you found were funny, it’s just for fun: ease up!

Your concerns should not be based around what your friends are doing but rather how your data is being sold to advertisers. Funny how those ads around the side suddenly changed the other day when I ordered a pair of dirt bike riding pants. Guess what? Every time I log in now there are other dirt bike ads all over the page for gear and otherwise. I wasn’t logged into Facebook at the time, but I accept that somehow the crawlers on the web know what I buy and what I use.

Is it “Minority Report,” big brother is watching like creepy, hell yes; but I accept it as a modern age form of finding the right audience. Truth is, I would rather see ads I am interested in then the endless barrage of ED medication to buy online. I love it when they try to sell me things for a piece of anatomy I don’t even possess! Let’s all agree to accept that social networking is a public place, if you wouldn’t want it on the wall at Starbucks, maybe don’t put it on Facebook.

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