Introduction: We are living in the golden age of technology. Day by day technology is going to be more important in human life. Every aspect of our life like education, medical, business, information, transport, communication etc. demand technological support. It is helping us many ways in our daily life. Nothing is impossible nowadays. Information technology, given us the power to move around the world within minutes.
What we got from IT: the communicative world is blessed of IT. There is no community in the modern world which can go through without IT. People nowadays become much more depended on IT. Operating business, financial transaction, entertainment, communicating everywhere we are using IT. In a word the globe is in palm and it happened for IT.
As the Information technology playing an important role in our life but sometimes it is affecting our privacy and social life.
Privacy: Privacy refers to personal secrecy or private or confidential information or property. In general everyone has some preference, someone likes to listening music and collecting songs and it is his personal privacy or secrecy. If anyone interfere his listening or collecting music that mean it is interfere in his privacy. In the website http://www.privacilla.org, they published, "The word "privacy" has been used to describe many concerns with the modern world. It is a complex concept even before other concerns are lumped with it. The concept of "privacy" deserves to be carefully examined. It defies easy, and many proposals to protect privacy have gone forward without a clear articulation of what privacy really is. Importantly, privacy is a personal, subjective condition. One person cannot decide for another what his or her sense of privacy should be". (http://www.privacilla.org/fundamentals/whatisprivacy.html)
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So privacy has no visible size or feature. It actually depends on person and varies community to community and situation. It might be personal opinion, political view, or likings or sensitive information. Day by day the globe is coming closer by influence of various inventions and technological bless. And the word privacy is going to be much more complicated in this technological arena
Social networks: Social networking is a grouping of people of same community or people of same neighbour or same likings or we can say it a group of friends. But in the IT world, social network is the best way of communication among people from same institutes or workplace via internet. For example; Facebook, twitter, MSN and many other open networks.
Facebook: Facebook is the second largest social network on internet was founded by former-Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg and launched in February 2004.People using Facebook find their older friends and stay keep in touch with friends and family, make friendship with new people, publish their personal information. Like as, name, gender, interest, study, job etc. people are posting their likings, personal views, or in a word every single moment of our time we are publishing to share with our friends. This information is recorded by the operators in the server. Though sometimes we are deleting from our profile but we cannot delete it from there.
How we are affected: According their (Facebook) privacy and policy, "Facebook has the right to save our information and to share with third parties if necessary". That mean, with whom they are sharing our information we do not know it. In the same hand the third party, they do not have any obligation to share our information. So the third party can share our information with anyone or can use our information for any purpose. And that's how we are losing our privacy. Our personal preference is going to anyone who is not familiar with us. On the other hand anyone in our friend list can affect us or our social status putting any comment or any post in our wall which result harassment and hamper social status. Again various companies they can use the preference of individuals for their surveys without acknowledging people from their information given at the time of having the account of any social network. Another thing is, as Facebook is an open source network when you sign in you are getting a lot of advertisement or application where someone can easily access. And if anyone access in those applications, there is terms that they can access your personal information. By this you are giving your information to them unwillingly.
A case study about Facebook abuse/offence: in 28th of August 2010 the popular newspaper 'METRO' in UK published, "£ 10,000 bill for Facebook 'Jokes'". The news was about two friends. One of them posted a joke about his friend. He said his friend, "he likes kids and he is a gay." And it was claimed that about 800 people watched this and that person was so scared to leave home. And their family expressed, "it was a horrible and really stressful time for us".
This case has been solved by court and the magistrate court fined £10,000 the person, who commented about his friend.
Recent warnings about Facebook: Recently The chief executive of search engine Google has predicted, "Web users will one day be able to change their identity in order to escape the traces of their misspent youth available on social networking sites such as Facebook."
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 18 August 2010 16.54 BST
In the same hand the founder of Facebook cited, "The Age of Privacy is over." In a six-minute interview on stage with TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington, Zuckerberg spent 60 seconds talking about Facebook's privacy policies. He said, "If he were to create Facebook again today, user information would by default be public, not private."
[http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/facebooks_zuckerberg_says_the_age_of_privacy_is_ov.php ,January 9, 2010]
So that mean in average everyone's privacy is the risk. No one is in secret at least who is using the social networks.
Conclusion: Finally we can say that social networks does not only publishing or reciting information about personal but also it is a medium of entertainment. If some steps can be taken to prevent the invasion of privacy all the networks are for our society and our community; to entertain people, keeping them happier and peaceful. On the other hand individuals should be much more aware about their privacy and secrecy. And we can stop to interpret anyone's personal life and preference and thus the networks of community will be fruitful otherwise day by day it is going to much worse situation as the founder of Facebook is aware about the privacy and policies of society.
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