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With all the hubbub about the Facebook privacy issues and "Quit Facebook Day," personally, I thought it was Kilt Facebook Day – I really got silly looks at meetings I tell ya! Anyway, I asked one of my favorite writers to give us his thoughts on privacy. – If you do not currently follow Mark, do yourself a favor and start now – he is, and always has been, the real deal.

His guest commentary … (And thanks Mark!)


There has been a growing amount of discussion recently about online privacy, driven in many ways by Facebook's decision to once again change its privacy policies. The interest in privacy is a refreshing change given how the growth of social media has encouraged many people to adopt a "complete disclosure" approach to their personal and professional lives.

In an ideal world, the spotlight on privacy will start to make more people aware that everything they post online – comments, photos, videos, updates, tweets, etc. – is part of the public domain. While what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas; what happens on the Web stays on the Web. Sure, some of this information is "private" but companies such as Facebook are under increasing pressure to make more of their information public to drive more traffic and generate more advertising revenue.

Unfortunately, too many people pay little or no attention to their online privacy, and the information and content they disclose. The problem is that once it goes into the ether, people quickly move onto the next thing without thinking about what they've done or the digital debris that they've left behind. I may be an optimist or perhaps misguided but I think the public-private pendulum is slowly going to swing back to private as people recognize that laying it all on the line online has its problems.

Mark Evans 

Follow mark on Twitter  @markevans

One Comment

  1. Stephane Hamel
    Stephane Hamel June 2, 2010

    “Facebook are under increasing pressure to make more of their information public to drive more traffic and generate more advertising revenue.”
    Ho yeah? Really? In the grand scheme of business, before advertising revenue comes customers – and ethic & trust. No users, no value, no profits.
    The only solution is for the actual people who make those revenues possible (the users!) to say “Facebook are under increasing pressure to respect the privacy of their users because in any contractual agreement there is a notion of ethic and trust”. Facebook should apply the basic principle that any information is confidentially shared between the user and Facebook unless specifically authorized by the user him/herself.
    Maybe I’m dreaming…
    I closed my account on Facebook…

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