Zack Whittaker posted a very interesting article on ZDnet about the danger about the information we all post online nowadays ( http://www.zdnet.com/blog/igeneration/google-ceos-social-media-warning-impending-information-armageddon/5940?tag=content;feature-roto ). And he absolutely has a point there. As some know, I am not a complete fan of social networks, although that is more because, well, I am not that social and I like to keep things private.
But, I have this blog, and recently started using Facebook more actively to also build up a network, which again can be very beneficial for my own companies. So, the things I put online are the more superficial ones, because I am not at all interested in putting anything I do, see or am online. First of all, I like to experience things first-hand. It is like people going on vacation taking only pictures and actually at home see what they actually have missed. I do not understand it when you are going somewhere, you non-stop want to update your status on Twitter or Facebook. On the other hand, if boredom strikes, well, anything is up for grabs I guess, even with me.
But a lot of mostly younger people, as mentioned also in this article, are less protective about their information. Including home addresses, provocative photos of themselves and opinions better kept to themselves. It might not hurt maybe immediately, but as you grow up you notice that a lot of information online might hurt haunt you for quite some time.
Probably, because this is happening so massively, the future generation sees this as a normal issue, since they all have that problem. But still, even then, there might be things in your past that you rather would like to forget. The Google CEO mentioned the possibility of changing your name when you reach adulthood, but that will not solve the problem, simply because I know enough adults who just as much share everything they do online.
I am still an supporter of having a secret persona online, and the possibility to have different identities. It is a virtual world out there, wo why not be virtual yourself? It happens all the time in MMORPG’s and social networking games, even dating back to the earliest pen-and-paper RPG’s (Anybody out there remembering DragonLance, Forgotten Realms or Ravenloft?), so why not do it now here. Personally, I think it might be a (virtual) life-saver.