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Interests: Facebooking

After about six months of using Facebook, I encountered my first stalker. Prior to this, I had used Facebook to contact friends mainly from high school so I had most of my information such as my new phone number that I had just recently got along with my screen name, address and such. Having Facebook as my first on line community, I didn’t think much of putting all of my information on line. I just thought it would be nice if my friends could access it, if they needed to get a hold of me. Well, as I stated before, I started getting messages from this person that “found? me through Facebook and obviously had all of my information. I started getting letters daily from him, flowers delivered weekly, as well as him leaving me horrid messages. This was my rude awakening about privacy issues. After this incidence, I learned about blocking people and changing your privacy settings. Currently I have my privacy set to the most intense level it can be at which enables me to be completely invisible to people that are not my friends. For instance, if you searched me, my name would not show up. I feel as though this lets me to still be able to use the network as a on line community with my friends and not have to worry about creepers on the web.

Also as a side note, at the beginning of the “news feed? many people were very upset about this feature displaying information that they updated or their friends updated, and Facebook came back with the response that the news feed is not violating privacy issues because everything that is posted on the news feed is open to the pubic, the Facebook crew is just making it more accessible. I also think that it is interesting that the day after the news feed came out; it was the headliner for the Wall Street Journal. Facebook is bigger than anyone ever thought it would be.

In my opinion, I believe that the University does not have any control over Facebook, especially now that you do not have to be part of a network to join Facebook. I have heard of instances where people have been reported to their dorms because of their Facebook pictures. I know that when posting anything on Facebook you are responsible for that particular item, but getting punished in an academic setting for your social life is completely uncalled for coming from the University’s standpoint. Because of this, many people have been changing their last names or spelling their name differently not only because of the University but as companies as well.

Overall, I think that Facebook is the next new communication tool and people just need to be aware of the privacy issues that happen and take charge and change the settings to something that is comfortable to their own taste. As far as the University believes that it has the right to punish people for issues and comments on Facebook, I think they need to take a step back and reconsider this new tool that is being integrated into every college kid’s life.

Comments

wow, that is really scary-- a stalker. I've never encountered that but I'm sure your view on internet privacy has changed since. You just never know what kind of predators and crazy people out in the internet there are! About the University and control over Facebook, I commented how I respected Cornell and their rule on Facebook-- we're all mature adults & we can make our own decisions. I don't think the University or any school should have the right to punish you because of what you posted on Facebook. I think that is a little extreme..just a thought. :)

Wow, this was the first time that I've heard of someone being stalked from facebook. That must have been a really scary experience.

In your blog, you mentioned the uproar that the "newsfeed" feature created when it first came out. I think that the reason why people had such a big fuss about (including me) was because each person's actions were visible for everyone. I think that when people's actions are written on the home page for everyone to see it's a little unnerving. For instance, let's say that I went to get my mail from my mailbox at the end of my front yard in my bathrobe and curlers, even though I know that other people could see me, such as people driving by and my neighbors, that doesn't mean I want to read about it on the front page of StarTribune. I think that "newsfeed" just made people realize more so than ever before that their actions are recorded and it's not a very comfortable feeling.

That is really scary that you had a stalker that found you on facebook. It can be kind of baffling to think about who is actually looking at your online profiles.

It also freaks me out that schools and businesses can and/or are checking up on us. It will really make me thinking about going over my online profiles with a fine-toothed comb before I start applying for jobs after graduation.

That's scary!
I hope this person is long gone. It goes to show you the many ways that your information can be used. I was thinking about phishing and other methods people use to gather info so they can try to break into your accounts. My wife called a place that was supposed to be PayPal, they actually asked her for her credit card number so they could look up her account. Yea right! My brother also warned me about telling inquisitive strangers about your background. He was being a little paranoid, but I guess that someone might be able to piece together my info in an effort to figure out a pin number or something. The moral of the story, guard your info.