"Kids today. They have no sense of shame. They have no sense of privacy. They are show-offs, fame whores, pornographic little loons who post their diaries, their phone numbers, their stupid poetry—for God’s sake, their dirty photos!—online. " -- From this NY Mag article on Kids, The Internet, and The End of Privacy (note: I wrote this post before I read the entire NY Mag article, so excuse any shortsightedness or redundancy)
I've had a couple of conversations recently that have led me to the realization that I am not a very private person. In chatting with other bloggers (mostly LJers) about blogging, all the LJers I spoke with said they locked most of their blog, the non-LJers who lacked the ability to lock certain posts simply steered away from posting about anything revealing. I lock only about 25% of mine, and thought that the major reason I tried to keep as much of my LJ public is because there I wanted my non-LJ friends to keep abreast of my goings-on. However, I'm beginning to think one of two things:
1) that not only am I a loud mouth but I am a loud mouth who really doesn't care that much about privacy.
2) being private has become some sort of virtuous thing and the situation being what it is (with so many people being so open book on all this web 2.0 thingamajiggers) has forced me to take a side.
While the first presumption does prove somewhat true, the sticky fact is that I did willfully and gleefully KILL myself on Myspace recently, and no longer even use it to look up/stalk people (though I still look at it for music). So I am not some attention grabbing media whore type person. While I am interested in being a public person*, I think I WANT MORE CONTROL OVER IT. I don't want people popping up with their own agendas and flashing html ads. I'd also prefer if no one showed at my house (or worksite or anywhere else I go) brandishing any weapons . However barring that, I don't mind telling people things about myself and will accept proclamations of love (preferably from strapping young men) in well -lit public places. I'm bothered by other things people find by Googling me. For example, my old roommate told me she Google'd me before she came over for the interview and found out things that were odd and out of date. Luckily her revelation gave me a chance to explain things so she didn't scream and run. I,also, do the occasional vanity Google and while it keeps me abreast at what the latest info is, I figure I talk so much that anything weird on there would be straightened out be people chatting with me just once and if they are so put-off by a simple Google search then they are probably luddite morons who don't warrant any of my time. As for unfavorable photos, I also couldn't care less. I try to be honest with myself. I'm OK looking and even less so in photos, ah well**. I just discovered a photo on betchka
's Flickr that revealed that my back is GIGHUMONGNORMOUS for my body. But again, ah well. So I guess the energy someone else would spend fortifying the floodgates so that nothing deemed "private" could seep out in public is time I spend giving people my newest opinions or newest info that will HOPEFULLY counteract some of the old hype (not that there is much, just a few unfavorable tidbits).
All of this is not to say that I don't keep secrets if someone asks me. I work in an industry where I deal with confidential shit and I keep it confidential, I CAN and WILL keep a secret. This is just to say I'd rarely ask anyone to keep a secret FOR me. And after all, there is another way to look at this shift. Younger people, one could point out, are the only ones for whom it seems to have sunk in that the idea of a truly private life is already an illusion. Every street in New York has a surveillance camera. Each time you swipe your debit card at Duane Reade or use your MetroCard, that transaction is tracked. Your employer owns your e-mails. The NSA owns your phone calls. Your life is being lived in public whether you choose to acknowledge it or not.
- also from the above article * Lending SOME minuscule amount of credence to your theory, Mr. daigor0
**Any of the abovementioned strapping young men should note that I do have sparkling wit, charm, great abs, and a killer set of teeth.