Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Internet is Forever

Excuse me while I step onto my soapbox for a moment.

Have you seen any of those ads on TV promoting safe internet use for kids?  Like this one:

Think before you post.  It's really good advice.  The internet is forever.  Pictures are forever.  It's a scary world we're living in.  I'm not one to shy away.  I blog, don't I?  I have pictures of my daughter on the internet.  Which may be considered a violation of her privacy.

Which is why I think very hard before upload and hit publish.  I don't put fully nude pictures of my daughter online.  I don't think it's appropriate, and I worry about the scary people out there who might... like it too much.

I was horrified this morning to log into my FB account to see a close friend's photos of her infant son's first bath.  It started off innocently, with the child fully clothed in an inflatable duck tub.  Then a picture of his wet soapy hair (still cute).  And then...

Then there was a picture, on FB for the world to see, of this poor little boy with all his packaging hanging out there.  And the caption?  "Baby's first playgirl shoot."  I almost died of humiliation for the little boy.

He's weeks old, and already he has photos of his private parts on display for the world to see.  The internet is forever.  This photo will forever be linked to his name.  Future girlfriends, future employers able to see this picture.

Have I never taken a full-body picture of my nude child?  Of course I have!  But those pictures are for private.  They are for me to keep in my home, off my computer.  They are for me to embarass a future fiance in a quiet photo album in the privacy of our home.  They are not for the internet. 

I quietly emailed the friend to let her know of my concerns for her baby's privacy.  It's not that I don't want to see his stuff (I don't.), it's that I worry about the crazy people who really, really DO want to see his stuff.  I haven't heard back from the friend.  The picture is still posted.  She's the mother, I'm not trying to judge... or maybe I am.

The internet is forever.  Think before you post.

(and because I want to get this heartfelt rant on FB over-sharing out to as many people as possible, I'm linking up with Things I Can't Say.)