As Sophie mentioned in her post Facebook and children, there has been a drastic increase in young users accessing popular social networking sites: Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. However, what most children and adults fail to notice is who can actually access your personal photos?
Once you upload photos to Facebook, they are owned by Facebook. Did you know that? It’s true and although many of you may not remember reading that fact, you certainly accepted to that term and condition!
There has been a lot of news coverage lately regarding photos stolen from young girls Facebook profiles then being uploaded onto pornography sites or even used on online advertisements under the name ‘Facebook Sluts.’
The channel 4 documentary, My Social Network Stalker showed the shocking case of the University student Ruth Jeffery. She told her story from the first abusive message she received in 2008, to the sexually explicit photos and videos her boyfriend Shane Webber circulated on the internet.
‘The internet is a dangerous world when it comes to keeping your privacy.’ (Ruth Jeffery)
Many users do not visit the ‘privacy settings’ on their Facebook account. Once you sign up your account is automatically set to a public setting. This means that everyone can view your profile and find your the URL via search engines. I think this is unethical, as many are completely unaware of this.
Are social networking sites in the wrong for automatically putting us on a public setting?
In everyday life it is down to you to ensure your privacy is kept private. However, the online world is a completely different story. You could be sharing your photos or information with hundreds or thousands of people worldwide without even realising!
Anyone could be on Facebook and it is not the clean site it originally was, there are countless cyber bullies, spammers, trolls and hackers on it. Times are changing, with primary school children now on social networking sites, should Facebook be taking responsibility and upping their security to keep us safe? I believe a stronger ethical policy should be in place. Although the simple answer would be to stop children using the sites, nowadays it is almost impossible to monitor the ages of users. However, In my opinion I believe we need to consider ethics first! Protecting children should be the priority.
Wouldn’t you feel safer if you or your children were automatically put on a private setting?
It would then be our choice to change our profile visibility.
A tip for us all to take and remember, be vigilant when it comes to posting on the internet, once it is online it is difficult to erase, however unethical it may be!
A question to you all – Is it possible to have social networking profiles, without having the world see your images?
By Saby Salvatierra