An interesting read on Facebook, children and privacy

Ah, good old Facebook. there are lots of things I love about it. And there are many I don’t. (Bloody Farmville and the like. Thanks God for the “hide” button.)

Now there have been plenty of stories about problems with privacy on Facebook, but they seem to have got their act together a bit, and certainly made the privacy settings a little easier to understand and control. But what happens when you’ve got all your privacy settings right, and you know that only your friends can see your private conversations, and you feel safe chatting with your friends?

Imagine, say, you’re a teenage girl, chatting with your schoolmates about everything teenage girls chat to their schoolmates about.

And then imagine getting called into your deputy headmistress’s office and presented with a printout of all those conversations, and a chat about the contents.

Now, I can’t pretend I know much about teenage girls, but that’s what happened to the daughter of a friend of mine.  So what happened? Did Facebook’s privacy slip up again? Did the school find a way of spying on their pupils?  Well, I’ll let my friend tell you the story, as she tells it very well and there’s been some interesting comments. Read all about it here on her blog. Serioiusly, if you use Facebook, and particularly if you have children who do, it’s worth a read.

And never forget the key point, from the deputy head in the story:

there is no such thing as completely private in the digital world

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