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Expand Your Mind: Privacy Bits Plus

Expand Your Mind: Privacy Bits Plus

Post from: MAPpingCompanySuccess

I dearly love the NY Times; it keep me informed, entertains me and endears me to all those to whom I send pertinent articles about their businesses and interests. I read a number of other sources, but NYT is my favorite.

For starters, what happens with a government promotes actions in its own country that it condemns in others?

“British officials and representatives of Twitter, Facebook and BlackBerry met Thursday to discuss voluntary ways to limit or restrict the use of social media to combat crime and periods of civil unrest, while trying to dodge charges of hypocrisy and censorship…”

Regular readers know I’m a privacy nut and there’s lots of stuff happening around that subject, starting with the company I love to hate, Facebook, which has once again changed its privacy settings—possibly for the better (maybe).

“…every time Facebook users add a picture, comment or any other content to their profile pages, they can specify who can see it: all of their so-called Facebook friends, a specific group of friends, or everyone who has access to the Internet. … Similar controls will apply to information like users’ phone numbers and hometowns…”

Will the US ever enjoy the privacy choices that Europe does? I and dozens of others have written warnings that what goes on the web stays on the web, but what about your right to have it removed—at least from commercial sites?

“As a general matter, companies in the United States don’t have to recognize your right to be deleted,” says Marc Rotenberg, the executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a research group in Washington.”

Cellphone and voicemail hacking has been in the news the last few months and I’m getting tired of being told how “that can’t happen here.” Ha! Is that wishful thinking.

“Just how vulnerable are everyday United States residents to similarly determined snoops?
The answer is, more than you might think.”

Enough privacy, on to other stuff.

The big thing now is to check reviews on sites such as Yelp, before trying anything new. This attitude is predicated on the basis that “the wisdom of the crowd” is authentic and trustworthy—which seems to be just another cyber-myth.

“Determining the number of fake reviews on the Web is difficult. But it is enough of a problem to attract a team of Cornell researchers, who recently published a paper about creating a computer algorithm for detecting fake reviewers. They were instantly approached by a dozen companies, including Amazon, Hilton, TripAdvisor and several specialist travel sites, all of which have a strong interest in limiting the spread of bogus reviews.”

My final offering proves that I do read stuff other than the NYT.

How do you ask for money, whether loan or repayment? While most do it in person there is a small minority that totally wimp out.

“Of the 1055 polled, 6% of respondents said they’d prefer to ask for money via text message, and 4% said they would do it via email.  A sad and lonely 1% of respondents said they would do it through social media.”

Have a wonderful weekend!

Flickr image credit: pedroCarvalho

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