Thursday, April 29, 2010

Facebook is sucking the identity out of you! Quick, change all your settings!

If you believe the hype, and the posts on Facebook, and the media, Facebook has taken over the world and nothing you post is private. For example, this circulated recently:

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg doesn't believe in privacy

My response: Why should he believe in privacy?

He's running a business. A business you (we) opted to partake in that's totally built on us voluntarily sharing information. When did we all start believing that ANYTHING is for free? There is always a price. And for all of us (like hundreds of millions of us!) to be able to post pictures, share links, create events and invitations, share thoughts and take up server space do you really think that comes at no cost?

How many of us heard over the years "don't sent personal information through email, especially at work." You know why? You don't own it. If you use the channel to send it, you lose rights to it.

So the smart thing to do is try to take some control back. READ YOUR AGREEMENTS with these social network sites. If that's too boring, at least explore the Accounts area of your "page" and set it at the level you feel comfortable with - and don't panic - Facebook really isn't going to do much more than try to serve up a bunch of targeted ads to you. I'd actually love more targeted ads. I don't need a Russian bride, thanks - but I could use a cute pair of summer shoes! Who's having a sale?

More importantly, if your kids are on Facebook, check out their settings too.  Until they're 21 (ok, 18), I say you login and see what they have going on in there and set it to Friends Only.  Oh, and you may want to check out their 647 closest friends, too. I can barely manage 150. Is that 47 year old man from Detroit really a friend? Ick.

The point is, if you put information up on a web site then businesses and their creators have a right to try and make a buck. I mean, what is the world, really, without a few more computer geek gazillionaires walking the planet? 

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