The myth of online privacy: if you are on social media, consider yourself exposed

Do any of you remember Friendster? Of course you don’t. I’m an “old,” so I have fond memories of being apart of one of the first large-scale social networking platforms that began in the early aughts. Friendster and MySpace are now defunct, or close to it, replaced by a dozen other social sites, with Facebook as the reigning champion with over one billion accounts worldwide. My old Friendster account is archived online and can be analyzed in a variety of ways, just as yours is today.

As a college student in 2017, you are probably apart of at least one of these social networking sites. You may think your profile is fully private (please adjust your settings if it’s wide open – employers can and will look you up!), but the truth is that if you have friends online, certain kinds of information about you can be gathered, even if you aren’t on Snapchat or IG.

If you’re interested in media studies and would like to write about “social media” as a contemporary phenomenon, consider privacy issues. Read the article below and see what you think.

On social media, privacy is no longer a personal choice

Social networks can make predictions about people, based on information from their friends

……..“It’s a good illustration of an issue we have in society, which is that we no longer have control over what people can infer about us,” says Elena Zheleva, a computer scientist at the University of Illinois in Chicago. “If I decide not to participate in a certain social network, that doesn’t mean that people won’t be able to find things about me on that network.”

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