Social Networking When Things do not go as Planned
Facebook posts, rants in cyberspace, personal e-mail, are all a part of the good life. Exactly how will we feel about all our digital tracks when life isn’t that good though? It is all over the news how a little careless Facebook mistake by a woman in Canada put her disability benefits into doubt. Well, what else could happen if you were careless with your Facebook revelations?
Let’s say in happier times a couple had a crazy party; one of them is just very proud of the partying he is capable of, and impulsively posts pictures of his wild hijinks on Facebook. In a child custody battle, how would party photos of him in drag strike the judge? If you personally manage to be discreet with your own profile, what do you do about descriptions of your life that your friends have on their page? They may not be too discreet themselves; they could open your life to one and all.
After a particularly sad event like a death in the family, what does one do with the online presences used by the deceased? One could plan for such an event, by placing all of one’s passwords on a service like Legacy Locker; they allow you to record all your important passwords, to be turned over to family, when they prove that an unfortunate event has occurred. Facebook will help you keep the account of the dearly departed, but will help you make it less live, by removing status updates and such. Some e-mail companies like Hotmail, will help you out by sending you a CD’s worth of the entire e-mail account held by the departed.
Internet services like social networking are so new and so full of life now that no one really wants to think of how reality can spoil the party. But as people like to repeat a lot these days, these are parts of your digital life; you wouldn’t want it to just get lost in space, or get into the wrong hands, now would you?