Privacy, Paranoia and Social Media.

Worried about your privacy when it comes to social media? Don't be paranoid! Or should you be?

How many times have you read through your Facebook feed and seen a shared status update about ‘breach of privacy’? Let’s see I think I am on 536, although I might have lost count at 2 due to boredom. The point I am trying to make or will be, is that most people active on social media seem to have gone paranoid with regards to privacy online!
“HOLD ON!” Some of you reading this will probably say…
Bollocks! Excuse my French there. I could try a bit more French, but to be honest, I simply do not like French, or French people or their ignorance towards foreigners! Don’t worry you will get over it, tonight you will be too busy reading about prime minister Hollande and his many mistresses anyway and long forgotten about my views on France. Talk about ‘public’ and ‘private’ oui!?

I apologize we have seem to have sidetracked a little. On Facebook the topic privacy seems to be an everlasting and ongoing debate. Fair enough it is definitely worth mentioning and I will not blame anyone for wanting to protect their precious personal data. But we only have to go to our friends in Hollywood who show us in many movies with the help of the likes of Chris Pine, Bruce Willis, Chris Hemsworth and Jason Statham that any data is hackable and public. Oh and do not forget it can be sold to the highest bidder on the black market and cause a worldwide disaster…or something like that, am I correct mr Bond?
I remember the early days of Facebook when I barely managed to scrape together 10 friends. Nobody had heard of Facebook or privacy for that matter. People seemed to be very happy at sharing their personal lives on the internet, with pictures, status updates and even more pictures. I could not imagine my parents being on Facebook all those years ago, but look at that, both my parents are on Facebook nowadays and my mother is even more active on it than I am ha! Why am I mentioning the parents? Because they belong to a category of people who seemed to be most worried about privacy. I do not blame them totally considering they grew up with LP’s, books and radio’s. Just for clarity I am in my end 20’s, and from that next generation who grew up with Game-Boy, Sony Discman and VHS. It’s a definite improvement I will say. When I first explained my parents I was ‘online’ they were worried I might be revealing too much personal information. Almost 8 years on my mother asked me yesterday whether I had put my address on Twitter? I think you can guess the answer. Bless my mother, I forgive her ;).

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google, they have all had their behinds kicked for not protecting the data of their users sufficiently. And rightly so. Facebook has definitely upped its privacy settings. But one clear statement you have to remind yourself of if you are to partake in the world of internet and social media: Accept that your information is out there OR try not to worry about it. So to help you out a little I want to refer you to my friends at PCWorld who wrote an article that will help mostly the older generation to tighten up their Facebook defences. For the full article check out: The Paranoid’s Guide To Facebook

You can manually decide what information you share, maybe for most people its a matter of finding out how to, which correctly annoys them so they do not bother altogether. Let’s not forget the news broadcasters have their ways for the dramatic and one shared message about privacy goes around on Facebook like a Trojan Horse Virus on a computer. Whether Big Brother is watching or not, well I do not care, he can take my data as much as he likes because there is nothing I can do to stop him completely. Maybe it is time you accept that as well. I mean what would the CIA or FBI or MI6 want with the knowledge of a picture of me drooling all over my iphone like a baby??!! Exactly nothing. So let them continue looking for the evil people like Saddam and Bin Laden (and Mr. Hollande) in this world while I continue posting my trials and tribulations online. Don’t get me wrong I love Facebook, I like being able to share my life and experience with my friends and family and I know most of you do as well. You can practically find anybody you know on Facebook nowadays and that is because they chose to be online. There will always be ongoing battles with companies like Facebook and Twitter with regards to privacy. But lets leave it for the news broadcasters to squabble about and let us continue enjoying what Facebook is made for: “To post drunk embarrassing pictures during a night out, checking my location in online while I am in a stripclub and seeing myself in a picture on a friends Facebook wall, passed out with my pants down to my ankles.”
Yes, that sounds familiar doesn’t it? Point made. Thank you.

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