March 15, 2011 Michael Bickerton
eMarketer posted an article titled, “Social Network Users Are Satisfied with Privacy Options”, and I must say I was surprised.
According to the article, 78% of users think privacy settings keep them safe. Further in the article that some groups believed that they could prevent “potential negative experiences” dealing with social media activity.
Facebook has shown itself to be quite careless with our privacy, however, as the privacy settings have evolved, most users feel that they can control their privacy to a degree by using the social network’s privacy settings. Further in the article only 7% felt that there was some trouble related to school, work or lost a job opportunity.
As you know I am a regular user of Social Media, and prior discussions have surrounded privacy, lack thereof and the question “Did you ever really have privacy”? So, I’m not easily influenced here BUT…
The fact remains, that as a social network member, you have almost NO privacy, so let’s not be fooled here by settings or the appeared of settings. The price of this ride is your privacy; make sure you are fully aware. Now frankly, I’m not sure your privacy or mine is all that valuable. Is privacy a non-issue? Advertisers think so.
The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada has a great video, titled “Privacy on Social Networks”. Well worth the two and a half minutes. This video will give you a whole new perspective on how your personal information is being used and exactly what you are signing up for.
I’m not trying to alarm but inform you. According to the article in eMarketing, the most prevalent negative experience was simply being offended by other users’ posts. In my opinion, that’s the least of your worries, as I’ve said before, in my opinion, privacy is a non-issue in today’s Internet and social media world.
Michael Bickerton, Raven5 Ltd, Toronto, March 2011