Tag Archives: digital footprint

Twitter Makes Every Public Tweet Searchable

Twitter has just made every public Tweet made since the inception of Twitter available through its search engine. The Guardian has suggested several approaches to scrubbing potentially embarrassing Tweets from being found through this search engine. The approaches range from deleting a single Tweet to closing your entire Twitter account.

The consequences to not exercising discretion in sharing information (or allowing others to share it) on social media can be serious. College admissions officers commonly use social networks to find out more about their applicants. Employees at fast food restaurants have lost their jobs. Continue reading Twitter Makes Every Public Tweet Searchable

Your Digital Footprint after Death

In recent years, a question has been raised: Who should have access to your online accounts after your death? Apparently, a group of lawyers are trying to make it easier for your loved ones to get access. The article notes that “the plan is likely to frustrate some privacy advocates.”

However, I had a partially opposite reaction. Given Facebook’s recent record, I think I would hesitate before labeling Facebook the champion of user privacy. As a society, have we really gotten to the point where the secrets we share with companies like Facebook are more intimate than the secrets we share with our loved ones? Personally, I think if you have secrets stored on Facebook that you would hesitate to share with your loved ones, you should consider the possibility that you might be confiding in (e.g. sending private messages, making wall posts, giving biographical details) Facebook just a little bit too much.

That said, I said that my reaction was only “partially” opposite because everyone has secrets, and there may be other online services that do contain information that the deceased would wish to keep from their loved ones. For the sake of my privacy, though, I would hope if there are such secrets, the service in question is one that is worthy of my trust.

Your Digital Footprint and its Real-World Ramifications

Today, the ABA gave the go-ahead to attorneys to look at “publicly available musings” of citizens called for jury service and in deliberations, but stopped short of allowing them to “follow or friend” jurors. Such “musings” may even impact the outcomes of legal proceedings; the article cites a case in which a defense attorney asked for a new trial on the basis of a juror’s post. There is a clear tension here between the privacy of jurors and the right of defendants to have their case heard by impartial jurors, but it is certainly not the first time an online user’s digital footprint has led to repercussions in the real world.

For years, college admissions officers have been using the digital footprints of applicants to help make their admissions decisions. In 2008, only 10% used social media during the admissions process. By 2011, Continue reading Your Digital Footprint and its Real-World Ramifications