When the first Facebook breach happened and everyone was freaking out about their information being given away without them knowing, I stopped and thought how did people not know that their information was being stolen? It’s almost like something I’ve grown up with, just giving my privacy away to social media so people can target me for advertisements and know my likes and dislikes.
There was another breach more recently that actually made me stop and think, why does Facebook need to know so much about me in the first place? I had my Facebook for 11 years – since I was 14 years old! I started looking back at posts from that time and cringed. We were so unaware and just blatantly put all of our photos, conversations, and information out on social media. We didn’t even try to hide it, it didn’t even need to be stolen.
Mass deleting on Facebook is basically impossible. And I couldn’t control any of the things I had written on other people’s walls when I was young. Like talking about getting “drunk” when I was 16 and asking people for answers to like every homework assignment ever. So I decided to delete it.
My Facebook had over 800 friends, it had thousands of photos. My phone number and birthday were attached to it. My high school, college, and every place I ever worked were listed. Why did I feel like I needed to divulge all of that information?
I didn’t delete it for good – I need Facebook for work and for this blog. But I made a new one with wayyyy less info. A misspelling of my name, a fudged birthday, no location information, no phone number. And now less than 200 friends.
I thought I would regret it, most of my life has revolved around social media. But I hadn’t realized it got to the point where I didn’t even know why I was sharing this info with 800 people – half of whom I probably don’t even know!
Any personal social media of mine – meaning not for my blog or work – is now as private as I can make it be. And I like it that way, I urge everyone to take a hard look at what they’ve put out on the internet. I’d like to think that we still have time to fix the mistakes we made.