Social Media - Even if You Don't Use It, It is Still Using You

I dislike social media. I have a minimum presence there for the sake of needing to be visible or for the very odd reason I might need it for something. I get the value it offers, but it is not something I feel the need to actively engage with so others can profit from my personal info.

I have presence on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and probably few others, but rarely engage with them.

So imagine my surprise when a co-worker just pointed out that my LinkedIn profile listed quartertothree and sharaleo front and center in my real life profile of recent experience.

Jesus fuck. It’s not like it would be difficult to connect my online handle to my real life details, but I sure as hell did not enter it into my LinkedIn profile as a representation of my professional credentials. What I do here is my personal life has little to do with my day job, yet it has somehow crawled the net and my other connections and decided to add that to my professional profile with no input from me whatsoever

So, consider this a PSA - if you are like me and dabble in social media because you just kind of have to have a presence there these days for various reasons but rarely engage or log in, at least check your shit once in a while because these platforms are taking their own liberties to connect your profiles or other online activities together and making those connections visible in your public profiles even without your input or consent.

I’ve always known they collect plenty about me, but do they really need to decide for me what collected connections/habits I might want visible in a public profile?

I guess I should have known better.

Odd, that’s normally the stuff they sell instead of providing it for free. FWIW, mine is devoid of my Quartertothree moniker.

Several months ago, I took a work trip to Indonesia. In a rural part of Java, a nice man guided us around and helped translate. He does not have my personal email address nor is my work at all connected with my Facebook.

Except – it is now that What’s App decided to share their info with Facebook. Actually, Facebook owns them, so it’s no huge surprise. However, considering that What’s App is the primary mode of communication for many people outside of North America and Europe, it’s a very very difficult platform to avoid when traveling for work.

Anyhow, Facebook now is suggesting that I be friends with the man who guided me around rural Java. Nice man, but no thanks. :(

Yes I started noticing this a while ago, anyone I had as a whatsapp contact would mysteriously pop up on Facebook as a suggested friend. Makes sense now.