Does Privacy Matter?
Privacy issue is one of the rising controversies of today. Many people claim that their private life is violated and are concerned about their privacy being exposed to those whom they do not know due to many Social Network Service (SNS) such as Facebook and twitter.
However, privacy is a double-edged sword. As privacy gets strengthened, the media and the services we can use decrease. On the other hand, if we use various convenient services SNS offers, our privacy will be invaded. Hence, it is up to the individuals on how far they want our personal information to be exposed and for them to use the service wisely.
Such an Oxymoron
An experiment was conducted by German researchers to reveal if people’s thinking corresponded to their actions. According to them, more than 90% people are willing to give away their personal information at the retail stores if they could receive discounts, and some even without discount, they did not mind providing their private information such as date of birth and monthly income. What was interesting was the result that was discovered through the survey. 95% of people who participated in this experiment said that “they are interested in the protection of their personal information” and 75% said “they have a very strong interest in data protection.” Their conception and action are contradicting.
This privacy invasion is made by mutual consent of the service user and the service provider. Even though we know that we get spam mails, we give away our information on various web sites for discounts and updates. Also, We still use the internet on a regular day basis even knowing the fact that internet providers can discover which websites and how many times we use it.
The purpose of using SNS is exposing ourselves and share what we have. It is very easy discovering friends’ schedule, where they are, what they think and etc. If we want to know Google CEO, Eric Schmidt’s house price, and the value of share he has, we can just google it and see what his house looks like through google earth. The authour of Viral Loop, Adam Penenberg stated, “We are hard-wired to socialize.” We are “biologically driven to commingle online and off.”
We should be the smart users
SNS is another way of communicating these days. If we post what we think about something or post what we feel like, then people comment on these. People sharing the information and the thoughts about the books, movies, and other activities with the people who have same interest are also very useful.
As long as we understand the consequence of sharing any kind of information, SNS is a very useful service to help individuals connect and gain insight to many things we are interested in. There is always a cost on obtaining something and if you do not want to share your ideas or information you can edit your account private.