“It isn’t paranoia if they’re really out to get you” Harold Finch.
In the last few years, social media has produced a multitude of viral topics, days and challenges. From the Ice Bucket Challenge to National Burrito Day. There is a day or challenge for whatever you’re into.
But where do these “holidays” originate? Have you ever wondered why a “national fill in the blank” day originate on Twitter or Facebook and by whom? And in the case of challenges require video or photo proof that you took part to be loaded on a social media platform or streaming services?
As the saying goes, “if you didn’t post it on Instagram, did it really happen?”
What makes me question all of this is because more and more we are hearing about advancements in AI and facial recognition. So I have to ask why are we being pressured into posting videos and pictures of ourselves doing specific things more and more?
Take the 10-year challenge. You post a picture of yourself ten years ago and one of you today. Seems harmless enough “look how I’ve changed!” But you know who else may find that interesting? The government and law enforcement. You are basically putting into a database what you looked like then and what you look like now.
It’s similar to how a few years ago there was a push for genealogy test. “Find your history, they say or discover who you are”. Turns out those tests are good for more than telling you if you should be wearing a kilt or lederhosen.
Long cold cases have been solved from matching DNA gathered from the scene of a crime with that sent to a genealogy test site.
Koerner, Brendan. “Your Relative’s DNA Could Turn You Into a Suspect.” Wired, Conde Nast, 6 June 2018, http://www.wired.com
This is why reading the terms of service is so important. We need to be aware of who these services are willing to share our information, our DNA/DATA with.
Facebook has been using the “tag” feature for a number of years where users can say who they are in the picture with or who the picture is of. Without using proper privacy setting we are telling the world who we are, who our family is and what is their name, making cyber stalking that much easier and as stated earlier, law enforcement and government is interested as well.
Social Media can be a fun and engaging experience, but we must always remember, these are businesses and they are in the business of making money and their product? Us.