Scary Ideas About Privacy

There have been a number of disconcerting revelations about platform privacy in recent times.  Facebook has drawn a lot of flak for introducing Facebook Places which has the ability to pinpoint where a person is accessing their account and entering data.

Not every one wants this information available to third parties. If you don’t wish to have Digital Big Brother knowing your every move then you should go to your account and do the following:

  • Go to Account which is at top right of the screen
  • Account settings
  • Notifications
  • Scroll down to Places
  • Uncheck the 2 boxes

There have also been some very strange pronouncements from the CEO of Google. Gawker with its usual eloquence, highlights this as ” the Google CEO outlining his dystopian vision of the future, in which children change their names at adulthood to escape damning online dossiers — dossiers of the sort stored by Google.”

In earlier statements Eric Schmidt would have us believe that we should not have any secrets and that the virtuous Google is better at maintaining our privacy than a government; I think not.

The other flaw in this post-adolescent  name change idea is that the inference that upon reaching adulthood one becomes sin-free. There maybe be super mortals in this category but I have yet to meet one.

Stephen Colbert skewers Schmidt on the privacy issue in this video.

Valleywag has got even hotter under the collar over this issue and lists six delusions of Google’s arrogant leaders.

Of course the other side of the coin is that it is not Google’s responsibility to dictate to users what they should or should not put online.

There has to be a level of personal responsibility and if a person is silly enough to ruin their own reputation on the web, whose fault is this?

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About thedigitalconsultant

Roger Smith is a retired international, digital consultant and former British Council Director of Online Operations within the East Asia region.
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