Guest Post by Emma Fuller, Omlet
But before you knew it, Mark began to change: He invaded your privacy, started keeping tabs on everything you did, he manipulated you, and even gave your secrets away to all of his friends. That’s crazy glue! If a guy did that to you IRL, you would kick him to the curb.
I thought it would be fun to think about our relationship with Facebook like a relationship with a boyfriend. What makes a good relationship, what makes a bad relationship, and how does Mark measure up? For me, the biggest thing is trust. Can I trust someone with my deepest secrets? Can I trust them not to betray me, and share my most private things with other people?
My relationship status with Facebook (in Mark’s own words): “It’s Complicated.” Why? Deleting Facebook sounds great, but is it really practical? No, I don’t think it is. The problem isn’t just Facebook, it’s us. We’ve chosen to be in this relationship, and to share all our personal info with them. We need to start making better choices when it comes to what we share, and how often we share.
Think of it this way: Would you share your diary with the world? I know I wouldn’t even share it with my best friend. All your data adds up, and even if you think your sharing a little, they know a lot about you. Pandora can tell with 80% accuracy what your political leanings are just off the music you listen to!
So how do you set boundaries between you and Facebook?
>> STEP #1: Don’t Wait By the Phone
Turn off mobile notifications so that Mark doesn’t message you throughout the day. Browse and post on Facebook only when it’s convenient for you.
>> STEP #2: Limit your “Liking” habit?
Facebook sells your likes and interests to advertisers so that they can specifically target YOU. I might see an ad on Facebook that is targeted towards 20-25 year old females who like Buzzfeed and the San Francisco 49er’s. We spend time carefully choosing what to like to make our profiles look good to our friends, but rarely do our friends check over it. Facebook encourages this habit so that they have more information to sell.
>> STEP #3: Only Post the Big Stuff
Post a photo or two here and there, say “Happy Birthday” to a friend, RSVP to an event, and then LOG OFF.
>> STEP #4: Only Trust Yourself with Your Data
There are other options for your more personal conversations, whether they be serious, or you just want to share all those photos from the concert you went to last week with your friends. Options that respect you and don’t sell your data.
For example, there’s Omlet a super fun, easy and social chat app that lets you easily message friends, share photos, post videos, and express yourself without Mark or anyone looking over your shoulder. With Omlet you’re as safe as you can be while still keeping in touch with all your friends. It’s your data, you should be able to control it AND still have a fun conversations with your friends and family.
[Note to teens: this guest post was written by someone from Omlet…we are running it because its kind of cute but it is intended as promo and you should keep that in mind]