When you join Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Path, and every other social media website, the first thing that you set up is your privacy settings. You can select what information is shown, who can search for you, what pictures can be published and so on. Essentially, you can have any information you want on your Facebook or Twitter page, but if you are a private user then only the people you allow can access that information. But is that true? These days, it does not matter what your privacy settings are. People are constantly uploading statuses, photographs, and location updates. You do not have to be directly connected on Facebook or Instagram to know what people are doing.
Nick Bilton, a writer for The New York Times, tells the story of his own trouble with media privacy. He held a dinner party with a few friends, when he received a text message from another friend who was not invited stating “Hey, I see you’re having people over. O.K. if I stop by?” How did that person know about this party? Bilton looks up from his phone to see his guests taking pictures, updating their Facebook statuses, and tweeting about the dinner party. It then dawned on Bilton that even though he was not posting any news about his small get together, his friends were. His friends could tag him in a post, or in a picture through multiple media outlets. It occurred to Bilton that his media privacy was no longer in his control. Read the full article
Although individuals have their own personal privacy settings, it is never enough. Media is constantly keeping people up to date on what is going on around them. While friends update their Facebook, tweet about their daily activities, and Instagram pictures of their food, they can tag you in all three of these outlets. Is there even a chance to accomplish complete media privacy? I do not think so. It is sad to admit, but with the constant updating and uploading, people will be able to find ways to see what you are doing, who you are with, and where you are.