Privacy Problem Social Media

Privacy is a big challenge when it comes to Social Media. The privacy policies seem to be difficult and actually not helping a lot to protect the privacy of the individual participants in those networks. In particular those who just now get on the band wagon of social networking often times hear about privacy issues of Facebook or Google and other platforms.


5 concepts to eradicate privacy issues

1) Networking with others

One key feature of social networking and social media is to be able to connect to more people than you could otherwise and learn from people and share information with people you actually don’t know. Obviously remaining private and not exposing yourself would only be discouraging people from connecting. It would be like meeting somebody in person but keeping the face covered, don’t tell your name and what you actually want. In the online world, people don’t have the opportunity to look into somebody’s eyes and as such try to be as open as possible.

2) Learning on steroid

Social Media is a way to get feedback or learn from people that may not get to in the offline world. That helps you advance faster than ever before. Ask a question via email to 3 people you get maximum three answers and since you know the people you may even guess what the answers will be. If you ask in the social web you may get answers from all kinds of people and partly from experts you would have absolutely no access to. In regards to privacy, all this would be a mute point (literally) if people keep their knowledge and experience close to their chest and private.

3) Information Dissemination

Traditional marketing is a one way street with a sender and a destination. Rarely did an information receiver engage in relaying the information to others (word of mouth). The Social Web is not only a way to get the word out if you have an interesting story but does that in unparalleled speed. Word of mouth was slow and very difficult to even recognize. It was always a surprise when we asked “How did you hear…” Interesting stories travel around the globe in a matter of minutes and grow to high volume in a matter of days.  Privacy is the opposite to fast information dissemination.

4) Market Feedback

In particular on the business side feedback is an essential mechanism of being successful. The more feedback a business gets and the better that feedback is the more successful is a company. Now “transplanting” that feedback into the social web has a variety of effects: The feedback is unstructured and typically a direct reaction on any kind of situation – good or bad. No better way for a business to learn. That public feedback is also a huge stimulation in the market that can’t be bought for money – even if the feedback is negative. Time is of essence and rather than conducting time consuming surveys with rather questionable results Social media based feedback is a near real time market analysis on an ongoing base. People have the benefit to be heard and gain influence in the products they are planning to buy in the future. Privacy would be counter productive to that process as the stimulation to discussions would be silenced.

5) Collaboration at the speed of light

This is a more advanced technique and one of the biggest advantages of the social web. You can collaborate in the social web with people from around the world in a speed that would be unimaginable in the offline world. Asynchronous communication means, you do something, share it, others see it when they have time, review or comment and as you come back things have already advanced. You involve not only the known team but customers, partners, experts, maybe even random people to extend the width and depth of the groups expertise. We use this technique since three years and get things done that one can only understand when you be part of it. Like tell somebody you can fly. Obviously openness is a key element in order to get to that point. Privacy concerns would dramatically limit the effects.

Privacy is nothing you should expect from the social web

Privacy is to the advantages of social media like sleep to the advantage of being awake while driving. We need both sleep and being awake and we need both, keep our privacy but also being exposed and gain from the social web. Mixing it is dangerous. And since we would not make the car manufacturer responsible if we sleep while driving, we should not accuse social media platforms to not worry enough about our privacy. If you want to keep something private – just don’t expose it in the social web – no matter what. As the old saying goes: You need to put something in before you get something out.

My entire social presence

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