Tag Archives: Facebook

Facebook Stalking Made Easy

22 May

If it were a country, it would be the world’s 3rd largest, ahead of the United States and only behind China and India. It even tops Google for weekly traffic in the U.S. What is it? That’s right Facebook.

Given its popularity I can only guess that you, your mom, teacher, possibly grandmother, and 10-year-old niece all have Facebook accounts.

Since it first opened shop to college students in 2005, its privacy protection regulations have changed dramatically, or to put it another way shrank drastically. Personal information that you believe you’re sharing with only the closest of friends and colleagues is now being shared with the entire Internet. Dan Tynan of ITworld said Facebook pulled a privacy bait and switch. Tynan compared Facebook to a friend who lets you live in an apartment he owns for free as long as you don’t mind him dropping by now and again. But over time he keeps changing the lease to where it eventually allows him to come over to the apartment when he feels like to throw a large party.

You can take a look for yourself how the privacy settings have evolved over the years with this interactive infograph: The Evolution of privacy on Facebook.

Wired.com claims Facebook has gone rogue and people should start searching for an alternative social network. People aren’t likely to leave Facebook anytime soon, but everyone should be aware of what is going on with personal information.

So how do you keep your “private” Facebook details private? BusinessInsider.com recently released a how-to-guide on putting your Facebook profile on a privacy lockdown. Follow their step-by-step visual guide to help you keep your personal information just between you and your friends.

As I logged on my Facebook profile today I caught this pop-up:

Worried about privacy? Your photos are safe. There have been misleading rumors recently about the use of your photos in ads. Don’t believe them. These rumors were related to third-party applications, and not ads shown by Facebook. Get the whole story at the Facebook Blog, or check out the Help Center.

Curious about what Facebook says about privacy? Read it here: Facebook’s guide to privacy.

Wired.com put it simply in Facebook’s Gone Rogue; It’s Time for an Alternative, “if multiple blogs are writing posts explaining how to use your privacy system, you can take that as a sign you aren’t treating your users with respect, it means you are coercing them into choices they don’t want using design principles. That’s creepy.”

If you have a Facebook account, check your privacy settings now to make sure your information is as secure as it should be.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/markcph/CC BY-SA 2.0

* Post originally published at brass|MAGAZINE


Social Media Ruined The Bachelor

2 Mar

As my roommates and I sat down to watch the final episode of ABC’s The Bachelor (Pacific Time Zone) I already knew who was going to win his heart at the end of night, not because I could read minds but because Twitter and Facebook feeds told me so. Thus setting my roommates and I into a “just look it up on Google” fest for the remainder of the evening. This is just a small example of how fast information travels today with technology, social media and the way we use it. When the show was over and the ‘surprise’ ending confirmed, we talked about watching the “After Show” to see who was going to be the next Bachelorette, but we figured it was easiest to just Google it. I logged on to Twitter and as soon as I did a tweet ran through my feed saying Ali is the newest Bachelorette. Interestedly enough I also came across a post about how one man found out through Twitter that Canada beat the U.S.A. in the Olympic hockey game before the New York Times had served to inform him. Todd Bishop said Twitter beat the NYTimes by only a few minutes.

“Does a minute or three really matter? Not really. It just caught my attention because it was a perfect test of speed for the modern news media, in all their forms,” Bishop.

I just find it fascinating how quickly news and information travels today, and my experience with tonight’s Bachelor spoiler I am not sure if it’s always such a great thing! Maybe next time I just need to close myself off from all communication devices. This isn’t the only time I have been informed about breaking news or information via Twitter first, e.g. Haiti. Have you found out about a breaking news event through Twitter before you were informed by the news media? Or is social media how you now look for news instead of going to your media outlet? If so share your stories with me. I would love to hear about other experiences with new media and its ability to break track records.

Freedom Of Speech & Privacy In New Media

24 Feb

In my recent post about the new social media guidelines I brought up the issue of who should really be held to social media journalist guidelines, but this topic also brings up another important point in new media: What are the implications of freedom of speech, privacy and copyright in new media.

With the way journalism and communication has been changing in the face of new media there has been a fuzzy line that people are trying to draw concerning our first amendment and fourth amendment rights. Recent stories in the news bring up very important issues concerning these rights.

We all know today that privacy doesn’t always mean ‘private’ especially when it comes to the world of Facebook. Pembroke Pines Charter High School student Katherine Evans learned this first hand when she was suspended for “cyberbullying”.

Evans back in 2007 had turned to Facebook to express her frustrations about her English teacher Ms. Phelps. Evans made a Facebook group named “Ms.Phelps is the worst teacher I’ve ever had” where students commented how they felt about Ms. Phelps. After two days Evans removed the page but was surprisingly suspended two months later. The Civil Liberties Union of Florida was attracted to the case immediately. Maria Kayanan, associate legal director, made a great statement concerning freedom of speech and technology.

Ms. Kayanan said it’s an important victory for Internet free speech that Evans can bring this case to trial come spring because “it upholds the principle that the right to freedom of speech and expression in America does not depend on the technology used to convey opinions and ideas.”

Do you think the school had a right to suspend Evans? Do you believe Evans should have been more careful? This news brings up a great number of discussions concerning our freedom of speech on the Internet. I am very interested in following this case to see where it leads. You can read the article in The New York Times here.

Another school recently reached headlines for using technology to spy  ..  that’s right .. spying on students using webcams from computers they willingly passed out to students to use for free. Administrators were activating the cameras on the laptops anytime they choose, giving them access into their personal lives at home in the hopes to catch and monitor misbehavior. This incident is a complete invasion of privacy. It shocked me to hear one of the students in reply to the suit say that everyone should:

“use a certain amount of common sense here and you don’t just get undressed in front of your computer whether you have faith in the school district or not to spy on you, you know just in case. There is no reason not to turn your computer around.”

There is a reason not to turn your computer around while undressing, because you shouldn’t have to worry or even feel that someone is watching you through your computer without your knowledge. The part in the students quote that really grabbed me was that “just in case because you just never know”. We shouldn’t have to feel like we are being watched in our own homes, and no one should have to worry about it happening to them. With the way technology has changed our society it is too bad some people are taking advantage of it in a negative way. Stories like this can instill fear in others of technology advances. Would you agree with the school’s method of spying on students, or do you feel this was a total invasion of privacy? Read and listen to NBC’s coverage here.

A few years ago Microsoft helped put together Data Privacy Day alongside a nonprofit think tank called The Privacy Projects to help raise awareness and generate discussion about information privacy when it comes to our digital lives. These topics and issues are tough to answer and I think ideas like Data Privacy Day are needed to look more thoroughly at how advanced technologies affect our daily lives.

From both examples it brings up yet again the question of how do we plan to manage privacy and freedom of speech via new media. What are our guidelines and laws for new media law?

How To Use New Media To Benefit Your Job Search

30 Jan

As a current student I realize sooner than later I will be faced with having to compete with millions of other grads for entry level positions in the working world, and I do understand how important it is to try and stand out, that is why I have been exploring my options with new media and how I can promote myself using it.

  • First off start networking yourself online using social networking sites like TwitterFacebookand LinkedIn. Each one has something different to offer but all share a simple purpose to NETWORK. Using social networking sites allow you to put yourself out there in front of the others, you can gain expert advice in your field of study or help someone else and by doing so gain connections. You get an opportunity to meet a large group of professionals that all share your same career aspirations that are willing to reach out and connect with you…how awesome is that
  • Next put yourself online by investing some time to make an online resume. Great sites to build your resume and profiles include Emurse,VisualCVCarbonmade and GigTide. There are others out there but these are the ones I have found fairly easy to navigate. Carbonmade is more for putting together a portfolio of work and the look of the finished product looks very impressive.

By making an online resume and portfolio you make it that much easier for anyone – including potential employers – to view what you have to offer. None the less it gives you an edge showing your future employer you are fully capable of using new technology methods to market yourself and potentially benefiting their business. By having your resume online it can also make it much easier for you to apply to positions by just sending the link, plus some companies give you the option of sending a website link instead of uploading a resume. You can look at my online resume at emurse to get an idea of what one looks like. I love the fact that my emurse website allows me to post writing samples along with examples of my work.

Think of the possibilities…Having your resume online could help you land a job maybe you weren’t necessarily looking for, maybe a company came across your resume and profile and liked what they saw…poof…new job. Well I like to dream I could be handed a job, who doesn’t?

Blogging about what you are passionate about can also grab a future employer’s attention. Blogging shows people a little bit more about who you are – interests, passions, personality etc. – Depending on what field you go into blogging may be an extremely important factor when coming to landing a position or it may not be relevant, but for someone like myself who is going into communications I feel that more and more employers are looking for people who do have their own blogs and most applications are now asking for your blog site or website address.

I also feel that blogging can allow you to show off your creativeness and depending on how much effort you put into it can set you apart from the rest of the job candidates.

FlickrYouTube and other online sites can also get you actively involved with future employers.

There are many ways to network yourself and using new media is an excellent way to do it. It helps you reach those people you wouldn’t necessarily be able to. In the competitive world of job hunting, especially for entry level individuals, it is extremely important to remember to network network NETWORK!