Social media and me

At the beginning of the school year, I offered six of my teaching periods to local police and gave them an opportunity to speak to my students about social media and the privacy issues attached to them. The objective was to educate them about what is healthy to share and what behaviours should be avoided at all costs. The message was transmitted as expected though it isn’t clear whether the students – all of whom enjoy behaving as though nothing affects them – actually plan on changing the way they act online. However, what it confirmed for me is that no matter how insistent my own friends and family are about my being on Facebook or similar social networks to facilitate keeping in touch, it is probably best to stay away and ban them from our lives completely.

Part of the police officer’s slideshow dealt with the legal issues and the articles used to arrest and charge people with online crimes. What you say, what you shared and how you said or shared it are all up for debate and could place you in a courtroom and in front of a judge. We already knew that law enforcement had access to our profiles in the event that we were suspicious, but it became very clear to me that they are also looking for ANY reason whatsoever to blame us for a crime. After all, Facebook is considered a public service and as such doing something on IT is similar to doing that same action in a public park. Remaining on it is essentially putting ourselves at the risk of legal repercussions.

If being on a social network is therefore of utmost importance, it might be best to choose a private one like Diaspora which doesn’t collaborate so easily with the cops. Using an alias and a generic photograph might also be a good way to avoid problems. Nevertheless, it might just be a good idea to get the Hell off of them altogether and force your real friends to call you instead.

Your Smart TV is monitoring you

If you don’t want all of your activities monitored at all times, you might want to think twice about buying a Smart TV according to The Guardian. Further proof that the world is entering a very creepy Nineteen Eighty-Four phase which is increasingly accepted by the public.

Americans ready to introduce yet another GMO vegetable

The Guardian reports that not content with killing millions of bees wherever their trademarked products are planted, GMO creators like Simplot are introducing a genetically-modified potato into agriculture. It’s just a matter of time before it becomes the most important source for fast-food companies like McDonald’s and Burger King.