Recently several of my friends and colleagues have been talking about so-called social media, ie things like Tumblr, Facebook, Google, Digg etc.
It’s no surprise that some, maybe not all of these and others like them, have been upping the ante and heading very slowly, but surely, towards that indefinable invisible line we all have around us concerning our privacy.
Let’s take Facebook, once hailed as the darling of the techie revolution. Their policies have been moulded and stretched and redefined so many times, bringing it ever closer to invasion of privacy….I now have so many friends who are either considering giving up posting anything on their Facebook accounts, or have just stopped completely.
Then there is the even stranger news about Google Map. I heard this from my friends in London, UK….apparently the tax authorities there are now using Google Map to look at people’s homes and watching for what kind of cars, or number of cars they have parked outside….they then bring up details of the residents’ tax returns, and if the amount of tax they file is not in line with the type of cars outside, an investigation is immediately launched into how the people at that address are able to live to such standards! The same goes for any house extensions the owners may have built…all are investigated….so much so that a lot of completely innocent people have been pulled up for investigations into their incomes etc.
Google has had a lot of complaints against it in the past, when it first decided to photograph every street and building for the purpose of inclusion into it’s mapping options. Even at the early stage, there was robust opposition from privacy organisations against this, but nobody did anything about it and Google went ahead. And we all know about Google’s tax evasion debacle in the UK…..
So what is my gripe? basically, it;s difficult to put a finger on it. Platforms like Facebook and Google have made life easier and/or fun for a lot of people….I’m talking about say, people who are disabled and housebound and have no way of interacting with their friends etc; for these people, Facebook is probably a godsend.
But when these social media platforms begin to pass through that invisible line we call individual privacy, then I think it’s time for governments, or at least some form of governing body, to step into the fray and put a stop to proceedings.
It seems nowadays that we are increasingly being owned by this social media curse, and that they are burrowing deeper and deeper into our privacy.
That cannot be allowed to continue. Rant over.
Do I have a Facebook account? Yes, I do, but it is no longer used.