Every time Facebook has a policy revision or a major feature update, the whole Internet goes crazy. ‘Will that make my privately uploaded photos visible to everyone?’, ‘Will my boss know that I have a photograph of him at which I throw darts at?’, ‘Why is Facebook snooping into stuff I look up, to sell me ads?’ and so on. While Facebook is not the company with the best of intentions, they are not the final reason why your privacy maybe at risk.
Let us look into some facts, shall we?
1. Facebook is a social networking website, which you can sign up for, on your wish and your discretion.
2. It is free.
3. It doesn’t aggregate data about you from the Internet and automatically generate a profile, like some other online services do.
4. Content shared with the right audience is never, ever made public.
5. What you share, is completely your discretion.
Now let me put forward the question once again – who is really risking your privacy? Yeah you guessed it right…. It’s you!
The idea is pretty simple. You want to keep something about your life to yourself? Well, keep it to yourself! It’s not like Facebook isn’t giving you a choice. If you just wanted to be in touch with your friends, you could always use one of the many messaging applications available for free or even better, ring them up once in a while. The same thing goes for sharing photos. Online photo sharing services like Flickr or Picasa are pretty slick for that purpose.
A quite popular woe is that, Facebook is violating user privacy by selling personalized ads and suggestions based on the content we search for. I couldn’t agree better. But think of it this way. Running a social media network with over 1.2 billion users doesn’t come cheap. You get to spend hours of your life scrolling through photos and messaging your loved ones and in return, they sell you ads which they think, you might find interesting. Not so bad a deal when you look at it that way, is it?
Most importantly, be very aware of the content you post online and how it’s set for the rest of the world to see. Be that as it may, Facebook is doing a pretty good job in giving us enough privacy settings to fiddle with and has always put the mission of connecting the world better over ulterior business motives.
Originally featured on www.donybenedict.in.