It’s a Brave New World

There is no such thing as a free lunch on the internet, especially where social media is a huge part of our everyday lives.

I’m a newbie to social media of all kinds having decided to jump into cyberspace only a few months ago.  Family and friends told me to join Facebook for years before I did.  They tried to cajole (“It’s fun!”), urge (“You’ll love it!”), and shame (“If you were on Facebook, you could see the pictures of ….”) me into getting online.

I don’t know why I resisted.  I loved the idea of catching up with my family, high school and college friends.  Admittedly, it creeped me out when my brother told me that one of my ex-boyfriends found him on Facebook while looking for me.  I had no interest in reconnecting with that guy–ever.  It was too stalker-ish for my liking.

A couple of years later, I finally decided that I was missing out on everything else out there because one ex from eons ago creeped me out.  So I dove in.  Well, no, it wasn’t a dive at all.

It was a tiny toe in first to get a feel for it.  I have a few rules.  I don’t use my kids’ names, and pictures are few and far between of them.  I do the same here at Mermaids Don’t Do Windows.  I know I’m not the only person who does this, so I don’t worry about it.  Nor do I apologize for it.  Is that too protective?   I don’t think so.

At any rate, I have enjoyed catching up with family I don’t see often enough and friends all over the place and new friends closer to home.

So how does a video about  a psychic go with activity on social media?

How is it possible that this man knew where one woman went to school or the color of one young man’s motorcycle?  What powers did he have that allowed him to know that girl’s bank account number or another’s best friend?

This was a public service announcement from Belgium that called people out for putting personal information on social media sites.

It is a Brave New World, isn’t it?   Our lives are being monitored all over the internet (not just on Facebook) for the world to see.  In Huxley’s novel, people were monitored for how they did their jobs and lived their lives.   Today, in the real world, companies monitor employees’ computer use and job productivity.  Companies review perspective employees’ web activity before deciding to hire them.  Unscrupulous people find ways to take advantage of others, which is what the video warned about.

Should we be more careful about what we post in social media places?  Probably.

Should we use common sense about what we write on our walls and what pictures we post?  Absolutely.

It’s hard to avoid moving through life without some kind of technology tracking what we buy (store reward cards) or where we drive (traffic light cameras) or what we do on our phones (it’s all stored somewhere).  Some might argue that Big Brother is indeed watching. (No, I don’t mean the TV show.)

Speaking of TV shows…Last night, we watched How I Met Your Mother (click to watch the episode).  Robin’s not-very-smart boyfriend told her how a fortune teller he’d visited knew so much about him–just from seeing his social security number, driver’s license, and credit cards (about 6:25 into the episode).  It’s hilarious, because we all know better.

Don’t we?

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