Tuesday, June 17, 2008

You Choose it But Can You Lose it?

The Internet is a fabulous tool. Finding information with a couple of clicks, visiting all sorts of foreign locales without leaving the security of your chair and buying an assortment of items you once had to drive all over the city to get. It's amazing, I love it and I'm on it much more than I should be. It can become addictive, but that's a blog for another day.

What I've become more and more aware of are the dangers. Not just for hooking up to meet people and finding out they're nothing like they claimed to be or worse, they're looking to harm you, but also the information that you put out there. It seems everyday or almost everyday, some person, usually a teen or young adult, has posted something on one of the many social networking sites that to most people would be appalling. Nude or risque photos, odd, bizarre or vulgar things that will someday come back and bite them. Some may not care and will never regret it. Others will.

In this day of information sharing and technology at the speed of light, sometimes it seems our brains haven't caught up with the technology. What someone puts something out there for faceless strangers to see or read can seem innocent and innocuous. After all, you'll never meet most of these people, so why should you care? But if it stays with you for life and can be brought up at a moment's notice, how careful do you need to be?

What about you? Have you ever put something out there you wished you hadn't? Are you careful about what information you share or what you say? How do you know when you've gone too far?


Diane Richmond said...

I think that the internet can indeed be dangerous and harmful. It was harmful to me and dangerous for my playful hubby when he posted a picture of me sitting in a wading pool shortly after we moved to Alabama. The weather here in the summer is many times hotter than the West Coast. He thought it was funny to show all our former colleagues how very laid back that I had become since moving to Alabama. So there I was in all my rotund glory, sitting in a kiddie's wading pool. He didn't consider that I was going to see these people again during the next year while testifying in a trial. Now my credibility was gone. I was humiliated and furious and he pretended he didn't know why. Needless to say, there have been no more bathing beauty pictures of me on the internet.

JoAnn said...

Being the super-paranoid person that I am, I have put very little on the Internet. However, I've sent a few e-mails in the past that were pretty stupid. I just try to remember that saying something on the Internet is like saying it on the evening news. And if you'd be embarrassed to hear it on the evenning news, don't put it on the Internet!

And Diane, even though we love them dearly, all husbands do things that make you want to slap them up side of the head and say "What were you THINKING?"