Monday, March 5, 2012

Social Media Privacy

Dear Boyd,

Your article Dear Voyeur, meet Flaneur…Sincerely Social Media brings up some excellent points about privacy.  In the world of social media, there is so much information out there now that everyone is watching and in turn being watched.  Some of the information that you put out will remain there forever, so it is important that people are extra careful when they share information. 

I think privacy on Facebook is a double-edged sword - people like the attention of being watched, but it can also be irritating when information is used against you.  As a user on Facebook, you never know who is watching or possibly saving your information.  I think it is wise that some people, like Carmen and Shamika, for example, recognize this and take action in protecting their personal lives.  They are both able to control their own situations by either deleting their own posts or limiting access to interpretation.  I personally think deleting your own posts everyday can be a bit tiring, but limiting access to interpretation is a safer way to share information with people within your circle.  

Your example of celebrity privacy was a great one as well; “celebrities can’t escape being watched, but they can divert attention.”  Some celebrities make sure to stay low under the radar by living such a “normal life” that paparazzi have nothing on them, and this is their way of diverting attention to themselves.  They can also be so public that the press has no advantage over them, since they put everything out there and nothing is news.          

Lastly, I agree that people aren’t just individuals, but rather they are members of social networks, and we are all surrounded by relationships.  Once we learn who is in our circle and who is out, we can better control what is seen and how to properly exert “privacy”.

Connie Zhen

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