Am I still in control?

internet-privacy

 

My online privacy is quite important to me, but I don’t have too many concerns about it. Why? Well, I post on Facebook approximately once a month, and all of that content is visible to friends only. My account is private on Instagram. On YouTube, I’ve hidden everything away. LinkedIn? I never really figured out what should I really post there, honestly 🙂

Right, so I am not the one to be super-active on any social media platforms. I use Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, WordPress, LinkedIn, and Snapchat. That’s 6 platforms in total, which seems about average, but everything on my profiles there, except my name and my profile picture, is hidden away.

I consider the main reason for this to be my fear of certain people finding out too much of what they do not really need to know. For example, future employers: I am sure they do not need to see what my friends and I were up to last night.

However, what I cannot control is the content that appears in the media that is written about me. Back in school, I used to play badminton, and I have been to quite a few national championships. When I was about 16, I decided to google myself, and, shockingly, I found numerous articles from local newspapers, discussing my performance in the championship and my games with local sportsmen, during the past four years.

What was truly shocking was that the articles contained pictures of me, a minor at the time. They revealed my age and my city, and the badminton club that I belong to. How can all of this be legal? Luckily, it was small-scale. However, my parents still got the pictures taken down.

Yet that is the thing: no matter how much you hide away, a part of information will always be out there. Some of it you will not be able to control. Maybe it is time to accept it and just be more careful about what we post, and stop hiding from ‘strangers on the internet’? Is it time to accept the content that is created about us?

Let me know what you think!

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2 Comments

  1. I am the same when it comes to social media – I worry about future employment and do not want to be judged upon photos drinking and smoking when 18 years old (thankfully that stage of my life is over and most the photos have been deleted).

    Now onto the other matter – controlling what people say about you online. If you read my blog this week, you will see that I embraced someone using my name and photo during an interview for my old employer. In actual fact, they took the photo from my LinkedIn without my permission, but I was okay with it because it enhances my career. Had this been for something else, I am sure I would not have been okay with it, especially as a minor.

    I used to go to a running club (when I used to actually do exercise), and they posted things online using my name too. I was only 13 years old. Thankfully it has all been buried in the internet and there was nothing “shameful” about the content – but I was not okay with their use of my name and photographs without my permission. Your parents did the right thing by removing it.

    So in response to your questions, no it is not time to accept content written about us. At least, not without a second thought. It depends on the situation, what the content is and who you are (such as if you’re underage).

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You make a good point that, although you can control what you share about yourself, you cannot control what other people choose to share. Another example of this is people tagging you in posts or photos, for instance on Facebook. I cannot count the amount of times that I’ve had to send that message to someone asking them to take a photo of me that I do not like down. And even once it has been taken down, the uploader still has a copy of that photo or someone could have taken a screen shot. I think this is a problem that is not going anywhere and I dread to think that if I am successful in the future I am sure some awful photos of me may be circulated. It’s better to start trying to be more in control now, perhaps before it is too late.

    Liked by 1 person

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