Showing posts with label Facebook. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Facebook. Show all posts

28 August 2015

A Stolen Identity

It has been around ten years since I decided to take the plunge into social media and join Facebook.  My friend told me about the site and to be honest, the idea of a social media network being used as a way to catch up with friends and share images seemed a very alien concept.  What was wrong with talking on the phone, texting or developing pictures?  More to the point, was it safe?

Ten years on and I find myself with a Facebook account, a Twitter handle, an Instagram account and a blog.  My thoughts, and indeed my images are out there in the world; there to be read and viewed by anyone who has the right social media account or the name of my blog.  Even someone tapping my name into Google can peer in through a virtual window into my life.

The thing is, when you put yourself out there on the internet, even with just a simple Facebook profile; what compromises are you making in relation to your identity when it can be accessed all over the world?

photo credit: Via photopin (license)

I remember Googling myself for the first time and recoiling in shock when I saw my image coming up again and again.  Images that I shared on my blog without a thought, but yet appearing on Google just by typing my name. Naive perhaps, but I never realised before that point  that my pictures would end up anywhere else than where I posted them.

(I have deleted the pictures not of me, as I do not have their permission to share)

MyVoucherCodes recently undertook research that revealed that 23% of social media users have had their images used without their permission.  When you think that Facebook alone has 500 million users, that is 115 million people that have had their images misused.

Just let that figure sink in a second,  115 MILLION people.

This can lead to anything from a brand using your photograph to promote their product right through to someone stealing your image and reposting on a hate site, such as the now deleted "FatPeopleHate" on Reddit.  This has happened to more than one body positivity blogger I know and has resulted in thousands of comments of hatred, both on the thread and also on the blogger sites themselves.

Even photographs that we do not actively publish can be stolen by people who know how, such as the hacked iCloud photographs stolen of celebrities.  They did not choose to publish their images, yet they were shared by hackers for the world to see.

So what is the answer?  Retreat from the internet, remove your images and let those who would steal them win?  For me, that answer has to be no.  I have certain limitations of what I will and I will share online, be it an opinion or an image.  But if someone were to steal my images for the purpose of  ridicule; they deserve nothing but contempt and a lack of what they really crave, attention.

8 May 2014

Look Where You Wish

I watched the Look Up video recently and have seen it quickly go viral all over the internet, the irony of which is not lost on me…. 

The fact that the video was created for the internet makes it nothing more than a cog, taking full advantage of the machine of which it is a part of.  The video is just a highly romanticised concept, practically begging to be shared across the social networks.  It isn’t telling us anything we don’t already know and I have seen similar such videos saying the same things.

Preaching at people that we should be less reclusive and reserved is all very well and good, but not all of us are naturally outgoing.  It is ok to be introverted; it is ok to be shy.  It is ok to be whoever you are.  Technology at its core is about making life better for people, finding solutions and improvements to whatever you need and social media is about connecting people in different ways which is a good thing.

I agree that sometimes we can be too connected to our phones and in a social setting it can be that everyone is on their mobile phones or on the internet; socialising with others yet ignoring the people around them.

But there is another side to the story.  (At this point I must mention that Big Fashionista has spoken about this subject in Look Down and you should definitely read it!).

For some, social media isn’t just a form of entertainment.  It isn’t just about playing Farmville or seeing how many likes you can get on your Facebook status.  It isn’t just about Lolcats or sharing your day on Twitter.

For some, it is an escape route.  For some it is a place where they can find a community of people that they don’t have in their offline life.  For some it is the place to go searching for answers when none can be found.  For some it gives you a voice where you had none.  For some, what you find on the internet ends up enriching all aspects of your life, both online and off.

Many of those reasons I can apply to myself.  I can pinpoint the exact point that my life started to turn around for the better.  I joined Twitter.  The small voice that I had, it got louder.  My opinions got stronger.  I found people like me, who think the way I do, who have experienced what I have. 

I know a network of people online that I could never have found offline.  A group of bloggers who are based all over the country who get exactly who I am.  They understand the way I think, why I think it and have lived similar lives.  This couldn’t have happened if it hadn’t been for the internet.

My offline life has been enhanced by the time I spend online and I have met some amazing people, some whom I have met face to face, others who I am yet to meet but feel like I know well.

The beauty of the internet and social media is that you can get out of it as much, or as little as you want.  It is a resource.   Yes we should probably spend more time off our phones when in company and should ring our friends more than we should text, but the benefits of social media are vast and shouldn’t be discounted or discouraged.

11 April 2014

Capes for Heroes

Today is the donation date that I have been speaking about on a couple of blog posts recently. 

The idea behind it stemmed from the Facebook #nomakeupselfie from a couple of weeks ago. 

What I have noticed about these Facebook games is that it is always focussed on cancer.  Whilst Cancer Research is of course a very worthy cause, what about the other charities that need donations and awareness as well? Alzheimer’s Research, The Stroke Association, FMA UK, SANE, the RSPCA, the Down’s Syndrome Association, everyone has a charity that means something to them because a friend or relative is or has been affected or indeed themselves.

I want to do something to emphasis that although charities like Cancer Research are important; there are others out there too that need help and support. 

The idea is that we are all to post on our blogs and Facebook/Twitter accounts a picture of ourselves holding a sign with the name of your chosen charity, the link or text message number of how you can donate and the hashtag #IDonated. 

Here is a bit about my chosen charity and my picture!

Capes 4 Heroes is a non profit organisation that have a very simple, but very powerful idea. Here’s what they have to say:

“We make and personalize superhero capes for kids with disabilities, kids with life threatening illnesses and kids who just need to feel empowered. We hope our capes give these deserving kids an extra boost of strength and courage and make them feel like the superheroes they truly are!”
Sometimes it isn’t about trying to cure a disease, sometimes it is as simple as putting a smile on a child’s face when they really need to smile.

You can donate a cape to a child for $30 or alternatively whatever you can afford to via Paypal on this link You can also nominate a child who you think needs a superhero cape of their own on the website. They also send capes to the UK.

7 March 2013

Facing Up to Facebook

I have been meaning to create a Facebook page for the blog for a while now.   I have been chickening out of doing it for ages but finally this week have bitten the bullet and given it a ago.

It is one thing doing a blog and posting it on Twitter etc, but Facebook can be and is a nasty machine at times and I knew that I would be opening myself up to a lot of potential criticism, particularly with regard to the plus size clothing and reviewing.

Most of the people I know on Facebook have never heard of a blog before and the thought of posting photographs of yourself on there is an alien concept to most.  Putting on my confidence shoes on however I created the page which can be found here!

I've done the page primarily for photo posts and also in relation to body confidence issues.  Now I have found confidence and self belief, I want to pass that confidence on to others, help other people find their confidence too.

I've had some great feedback from the Facebook page from friends, from others I am not too sure about but time will tell.

Maybe someone will see a post I write or something I wear and have confidence to think it or wear it themselves.  Maybe they will, maybe I'm just putting all this out in the cosmos not doing much at all.  But I'd rather try to do something then sit still, not moving forward.

12 February 2013

Eaten by the Internet

When does social networking move from pleasurable to a pain?  When did it change from something that you nip onto in a spare five minutes, to being something that you constantly maintain and check?

I first entered the realm of social media with Myspace.  It is so long ago now I can't even remember what I did there, but it wasn't anything that was particularly addictive, or fun.  From Myspace I was encouraged by a friend to move to Facebook.  So it began.

Fast forward through to 2013 and I have Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and a blog.  How did that happen?  I'm not even sure myself but I know that a chunk of my time is taken maintaining or checking these sites.  How profitable is it to me however?

Looking at each one and the reasons I am there, it becomes easier to see how you can get caught up.

Facebook is used to catch up with friends.  It was the first of the social networks to go global and it is still the most popular, thereby being the one that you can still catch up with most people you know on.  It is however also massively irritating, although more down to the things people post as opposed to the site itself.  Baby pictures, quotes, it's just not interesting enough to hold my attention.

That took me to investing Twitter.  I joined Twitter to find like minded Formula One fans.  It has grown into an addition that I don't want to quash.  I love my Twitter and I'm keeping it.
Google Plus I was forced into having when I changed my email to a Gmail Account.  I ended up using it for blog purposes but don't use it for any other reason.  I see fail to see the point of it but somehow, I still end up having a look 2-3 times a week.
The last of my online addictions is of course this blog.  This is the place that I spend most time on and many many hours have been spent in maintaining and adding to the blog.  I don't regret these hours however as the blog gives back to me as much as I give it.
This is however how you end up with so many internet commitments.  I have managed to justify all of mine, quite easily.  I think that as long as it doesn't interfere with your working life, and you have a social life outside of cruising around Twitter, there isn't a problem.
This said, I have just got my claws into Tumblr.  Goodbye social life, it was fun xx

2 November 2011

Split Personality? No it's just Social Networking

I think that this is going to be one of the posts where you either agree completely with me, or you think I’m crazy.
Have you noticed that each of the social network sites brings out a different side of you?  Most people tend to say for example that on Facebook, you tend to show the “ideal” version of yourself.  An inaccurate portrayal which shows the world you who want to be, how wonderful your life is, even if it isn’t.

You have the “look how many friends I have, how popular I am” types, the mothers with the countless baby updates and photos see Baby, Baby, Baby Nooo! just to show what a good mother they are, the woe is me types etc etc.

People say about my Facebook that I am too picky about the photos on it of me, and I always always make them laugh.  So basically, what that boils down to is bad self image and wanting people I know to like what I am saying.

With Twitter, it is different again.  

I only have three people I actually know on my follow list.  The rest I met through Twitter and have never met in real life, and I like that.  I can and do say what I want without the fear of being judged for what I think or say.  I talk to likeminded, fun people about things we love, or just have a banter with.

Twitter brings out my ranting side, my willingness to talk to new people and gain other’s perspectives on things, not just my own.  It has brought out my opinionated side more in my real life, which is a good thing.

Google+ brings out my techie side but with so few friends on there that have crossed over from Facebook, I don’t really bother with it much so won’t here either.

So that’s the social networks.  One is the “like me” side of me and one is the ranting, opinionated side of me.  Both are the twin halves of me, but they will never be joined together, not on a social network site.

Here however, on this blog, is truly me.  When I write, good or bad, it is always truly what I think and who I am.  You get the insecure side, the ranting side, the funny side, the opinionated side, every side I have.  I never thought when I started this blog that it would be anything more than just a bit of fun.  I never expected to post as much as I do or be as honest as I have.  The blog is the virtual me and I find myself quite possessive of it now I have it.

When I first started putting the links of my blog on Twitter I was truly terrified.  I don’t know what I expected people to say, but I know I expected a negative reaction.  That’s the good thing about Twitter though, you are sending it to strangers and if they don’t like it, what does it matter?

No friends have ever read this blog.  I’ve never given them the address.  Maybe that’s the next step.

Well this has been a bit of a disjointed post.  I knew what I wanted to say at the start and it kind of run away with me.  But there you go, that is me.  I ramble, a lot.