Today is Quit Facebook Day, but I’m not quitting, even though I think Facebook is handling the whole privacy issue badly, as many have pointed out – http://www.pcworld.com/article/197621/its_quit_facebook_day_are_you_leaving.html
There are three main reasons I’m not closing my Facebook account:
- Facebook’s inappropriate behavior around privacy means I must pay attention and make sure I work at maintaining a level of privacy that I am comfortable with, (so it forces me to learn);
- Google is also guilty of inappropriate privacy behaviors – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1278621/Google-apologises-using-Street-View-car-equipment-snoop-Wi-Fi-browsing.html – and I can’t give Google up; it’s too useful, in fact, I used it to find this link; and centrally,
- Many friends and relatives who aren’t very interested in or knowledgeable about the web have “friended” me on Facebook and I value my connections with them.
So I’m staying on Facebook, for now.
However, I think that it’s increasingly important for people to understand that anything you put on the web, or that friends or others put on the web about you,
- will stay for years or longer;
- will be used by marketers and detectives to target you for THEIR purposes; and
- increasingly even what you think you’ve protected can be found by skillful hackers.
So you really have only three choices:
- cut yourself off from the web completely and go “off the grid”;
- use the web and social media but be careful about what you say and show; or
- ignore your own vulnerability until it harms you (and you may never even know the source of the harm if you choose to be that careless).
So make your choices, but at least be aware that they are choices and chose accordingly.