How private are your photos?

I’m a fairly open person but for various personal reasons I do restrict my Facebook photos, usually to friends only but occasionally to a select group of people. I was interested in this item on Newsnight last week, where a woman from London’s photos had been taken from Facebook and used on  a blog (which  has now been revealed to be a fake). After concern was raised that the blogger had been kidnapped in Syria her picture appeared in newspapers the world over and because of the sensitive nature of the blog she was understandably fearful. It’s not clear how the pictures came to be used or whether she had made the pictures private but the story raises issues of privacy and copyright.

I guess the best advice is make your images private but beware you may still not have control over what happens to them. Certainly don’t post anything you wouldn’t want people to see!

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4 thoughts on “How private are your photos?”

  1. Good article. The main problem I have with photos on facebook is that you can’t control what others post of you (tagged or not). You can be extremely careful about what your friends can see but you can’t always be certain that they won’t be careful with their own posts. You might not even have your own facebook profile but you can be sure that your photo will be on their somewhere!

    1. You are quite right of course but I guess that is a bigger issue. Can you remember in the early days of FB when you had to ask permission to tag people? I wonder why they stopped it? I’m not sure how you could stop people posting pics of you on the internet? Maybe wear a paperbag at all times?

    1. It was scary wasn’t it? In fairness I suspect the Guardian and other papers were acting in good faith. They had no reason to assume it wasn’t her. I’d be interested to know if the man who set up the fake blog had any connection with her. It’s almost more creepy that he focused on her as the face of the fake blog. Before it was revealed as a fake it was possible to think her picture was used because the other person wanted to protect their identity, although plenty of anonymous bloggers don’t use any pictures.

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