As all of you I’m sure can assume, I spend a lot of time on the internet, which I don’t feel bad about at all. However, sometimes I worry about the information I put on the internet. It’s safe to assume my entire life can be found in the matter of a few clicks, and that’s how it is for most people, I’ve done it. This occasionally scares me.
I never have location services turned on unless I’m maybe out somewhere, like “oh hey I’m at a Phillies game, you jealous?” but that’s it. Never at school and never at home, because it is so easy to track that information. This is one huge way that I try to stay safe on the internet.
Things that make me nervous are things like I haven’t told you guys where I go to school or the exact town where I live, but if you follow me on twitter you’d probably find out where I go. Is that dangerous? I’m not sure. I keep my Facebook very private, I only ever add people I know and I thought maybe for a little I would let blog followers add me, but I don’t know if that’s safe. If it continues to grow I’ll make a fan page or something, but at this point I don’t feel safe accepting friend requests for this very reason.
I think that the way we were taught to use the internet and the way we use it is very different. We were taught not to talk to strangers, not to put out personal information, if you talk to people on internet they’re probably fake, it’s not a safe place, and the list goes on and on. I’ve had countless assemblies on this for about as long as I can remember. However, I’m not sure if I agree with this. I talk to “strangers” on a regular basis, I mean if you comment on my post, I’m going to reply. I send people messages on tumblr if they seem sad or upset. I put my email out here in case someone ever needs someone to talk to, I never know who’s going to stumble upon this. I don’t put personal information out here really, like it would take long email conversations and maybe even skype before I would give my number to anyone. I’m still very cautious and weary about people on the internet because of what I was taught, but I’m not going to let that stop from meeting more people.
I think now, our generation is starting to see the internet as a place to make friends and connections. I mean, go on tumblr, you’ll find blogs run by two people who live across the world from one another and have never met in person yet they’re best friends. I still think we need to be weary of people but that doesn’t change the fact that you could meet really great people online. The internet is the WORLD WIDE WEB you can meet people from all over the world. Say you make a friend in England and oh look you have the money for a plane ticket and food, yet you don’t have somewhere to stay, if you have a close friend in England that you know is real because you’ve skyped and such, you do, if they don’t mind. You can make connections literally everywhere and I think that’s amazing.
So yes, the internet can be a very scary place but that doesn’t mean that we should have been taught to be afraid of it. We should have been taught on how to be careful and how to tell if someone is real or fake rather than just being told that everyone is scary and fake. The internet is the new playground, a place to make friends, but it’s even better because you can meet people from literally anywhere. So go make a real internet friend because I think that’s cool, even though I don’t have any. Be careful though.
Thanks for reading everyone!