I find it funny that people are just beginning to concern themselves over privacy online. I read an article today on people getting ready to quit Facebook as of today over concerns about privacy. The thing that is funny to me is that this concern is over a site where people willingly signed up - and I wonder how many of these people have googled themselves to find the oodles of other places where privacy was taken away from them - without their permission.
Take Google maps for instance. I put in directions to take my daughter to a school mates birthday party, only to find that there was a picture of my house available. I had to ask to have it removed, not give permission to have it placed on there. And researching into this a bit further, I actually found pictures of people on some of the images of houses along with vehicles with viewable license plates.
And then there is Intelius, a people search site that gives not only the name and city on a person that is looked up, but lists possible relatives that are viewable to anyone - even without a subscription. I have not joined the site, but I wonder what other info they offer... again, without permission.
These are just two examples of how much, or rather how little, privacy is really concerned about online. You have to be proactive to keep guard over what is out there on you. I google myself every now and again to see if there is some site that has encroached on my rights to privacy, and I am likely missing some places where this has happened, and I hope that if I am having difficulty finding it, so will others...
I am not on Facebook, I never signed up for it because years ago I signed up for Myspace when my children were younger and joined it. I found the whole thing to be way different than what I expected. I thought it would be cool to connect with people from different places and share cultural exchanges, but instead it was like an online dating camp for weirdos... No thanks, I prefer finding places to network and connect with people who share similar interests with me... when I have the time. Whether that is in person, or on sites dedicated to the things I do, such as the Software Testing Club.
Going after Facebook due to it's privacy settings is a good thing, but what about the rest of the sites out there that quietly trespass on the rights of Average Joe? The Web is world wide, and until they figure that out, I will continue to search for myself online and "opt out" of anything that has taken advantage of my rights to privacy.