Social Media is a big part in our everyday lives. From Facebook to Twitter it has completely taken over the way we connect with others and also gain information. After reading Tom Coopers, Between the Summits, I focused in trying to find more about why people are so scared about privacy issues on social networks. In order gain more insight on this ethical problem, I searched through articles for more information and found a great one by Sharon Jayson. Her article Social Media Research Raises Privacy and Ethical Issues, focuses on how our personal and private information is being accessed by companies such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft.
Today the internet has so much information on us because of what we search for and what we say. Jayson says, “Just consider that mining online communication has already helped Microsoft identify women at risk of postpartum depression. It’s also allowed Facebook to study how parents and kids interact.” Having all of this technology definitely helps us in different aspects of life but does it know too much is the real question. Some might not think its a problem but there are many people out their scared that these companies are going to use their personal information against them. “Some of Facebook’s research on user behavior found that 71% of people drafted at least one post that they never posted.” said Jayson.
In order to grasp this issue I created a study which surveyed students and faculty between the ages of 20-52 and tried to make them open up about their personal opinion on social media privacy. My results showed that privacy concerns mostly depended on the age of the person. College students seemed to be less concerned about privacy issues with social media than older people 30 and above. This is because college students don’t really have their lives established yet and don’t have that much to lose. Another aspect I learned from my study was that the main privacy issues people were concerned about were personal information being leaked, photo sharing and profiles being hacked because they feel like social media is not completely private. 70% of the people surveyed said they often, if not always, watch what they post online. I can completely understand why these are concerns and I personally am scared of personal information being leaked as well.
All of these resources came to the same conclusion that proves there is a major concern with privacy in social media. The reason why there is so many problems is because there is nothing that is stopping from google or Microsoft to gain information about us. We are so dependent on the internet with connecting with others and gaining information that its impossible to be careful what we are doing. Each resource has legitimate reason and even the study that I created proved that this a major problem.
Jayson, Sharon. “Social Media Research Raises Privacy and Ethics Issues.”USA Today. Gannett, 12 Mar. 2014. Web. 22 Feb. 2015