I didn’t think there was any harm in making a Facebook profile in 2007. My friends and I had eagerly awaited the moment when it would be socially acceptable to make one once we graduated middle school.  I loved being able to put up pictures of my friends and I. “Facebook stalking” was a frequent activity (and still is) that we all indulged in. 

My parents were concerned about my joining Facebook in fear that it would leak too much of my personal information. At the time, Facebook was a lot more private. If you wanted to set your photos as private, you could. If you weren’t friends with someone, they couldn’t see your pictures. You had a lot of control over who had access to your profile, and even what parts of your profile certain people could see.

Unfortunately, information is gradually becoming less private on Facebook. The Washington Post article “Facebook privacy: Users should check these settings as new changes roll out” by Hayley Tsukayama discusses how Facebook is cutting a setting that allows users to control if they show up on people’s search bar. She explains changes that are approaching on Facebook and ways to help make your information more private.

Recently, there was an uproar among Facebook users because you can now see pictures of people you are not friends with whether they want you to or not. In other words, other Facebook users that you are not friends with can see YOUR pictures. In a way, it is secretly fun for everyone to see pictures of a crush and other people. However, this can be very concerning when you consider how employers and administration at your university could get access to your photos.

Facebook "Photos of"

           Image courtesy of myself, Erin Gibson

My main issue with this new feature to Facebook is that they misled all Facebook users into thinking that they will always have control over who can see their photos. I find it more understandable for information to be less private if you are notified before you post that information. However, for information that you posted knowing it was supposed be private to suddenly be open to the public is not right. When will your privacy stay private?

Don't these privacy settings lead you to believe that you have control over who sees your content?

Don’t these privacy settings lead you to believe that you have control over who sees your content?

Image courtesy of Flickr user mia! 

Featured Image courtesy of AJC1


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