Sunday, February 19, 2012

There is no privacy on the Internet

What up world!



As soon as I hit "publish" on this blog post, literally any person in the world will be able to see it, read it, comment on it, share it or copy it. The same thing applies to tweets, Facebook posts, Instagrams, Google+ posts, Foursquare check-ins, forum comments, websites and whatever else you do on the internet.

Creeping present participle of creep (verb)

verb: 1. The act of looking at someone else's voluntarily given info on the internet. Made famous because of Facebook. People routinely get upset if other people are looking through their pictures and reading their personal posts: "Were you creeping on my pictures, creep?!"

I was talking to a new friend on Twitter the other day @jessicadaniels who tweeted me a comment about a blog post I had written. I asked if she had read any of my other posts and she said no, she didn't want to be a creep. I was a little taken back. I try very hard to be 100% aware of what I put online and I know that it can and will be seen by the world. I don't like to think anything on my social media accounts is private. If I didn't want people to read my blog posts, look at all my FB pictures or go through all 4000+ of my tweets just because they can, I wouldn't be on the internet. (Jessica, you're not a creep; read whatever you want!)

Creeping (also see: stalking) is a term that has blown up in the last couple years. For some reason people have the idea that since it is THEIR Facebook page, or THEIR blog that they deserve a certain level of privacy.  I can see where they are coming from. Girls seem to be most upset by creepers. They love to post cute pictures of themselves so their girlfriends can comment and give them hoards of positive attention but the second some guy they don't know "likes" it or comments on it they are a CREEP. Really? I understand that you don't want weird guys looking at your pictures, but thinking that you can keep those things private ANYWHERE on the internet is as stupid as thinking you can jump in a pool without getting wet. If you want to share stuff that you don't want EVERYONE to be able to see do it over text, or better yet, in person.

If, for any reason, you believe that the things you post on the Internet are in any way private, you don't belong on the internet.
It had to be said...

Here's a quick checklist I made for anyone to use. Feel free to pass this onto your friends that need it. This doesn't apply only to girls, but truth be told they are the vast majority users of the word creep. Before you put something on the internet, anywhere, ask yourself these quick questions:

-Am I making a duck face?
-Do I care if a hooker from asia sees this and shares it with her pimp?
-If America got ahold of this in 10 years when I'm running for an office would it kill my chances of winning?
-Will my parents use this as blackmail someday?
-Do I realize my shirt is off and people can totally see I'm taking this picture in the mirror?
-Do I want to be fired from my job?
-Am I OK knowing that the creepy guy from Math knows where I am right now?
-Will a negative comment on this set me into a fit of depression?
-Am I OK knowing that the guy/girl I am not texting or calling back is reading all my Facebook/Twitter updates and is probably pretty upset about being ignored?

This is a great little checklist to help you realize what could happen from a little false security in the privacy you think you have on the internet. People need to learn that what they post online, isn't private. In protest of people who throw around the "creep" word too much I encourage everyone to not be afraid of being a creep. Get out there and go through people's pages, blogs, tweets EVERYTHING they have online. Learn about them. Who cares if they think you're creepy. They put the dog food in the dish, they have no right to be mad when the dog eats it. They posted it for the world to see; It's their problem if they think you are a creep. Just be aware though, everyone else is going to be doing the same thing to you... Don't feed the dog ALL your food, keep some things private like they should be.

(Image source: freepixels.com)

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