Why I Hide My Identity On The Internet and You Should Too
Some people have good reasons to hide their identity on the Internet. Here is my reason.
Hiding On The Internet
Today, I read another comment (not on Wizzley) that said, "It should be a requirement to post a REAL photo on the profile page." That comment, which I've heard/read so many times before, was the inspiration for this article.
I read one too many comments about how people should write more about themselves. How people should add more information to their profiles and post a photo in their profiles and on their blogs, articles, pages, lenses...whatever. Many people seem to think that if a person doesn't post information about themselves, or a photo in their profile, that they are hiding. And you know what? They are hiding.... but not for the reasons you may think. Some people have very valid reasons for hiding behind the computer, for not posting their photos and personal information on the Internet.
Here are my questions to you....
- If you had been stalked, on the Internet or in person, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you had a restraining order against someone, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you have been a target because of political antics in a forum or social network, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you knew that some pervert out there was downloading the photos of your children that you posted on your articles and blogs, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you had been stalked or harrassed by an ex, or just didn't want your ex knowing what you are doing, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you didn't want your boss and colleagues following your every move on the Internet, or knowing what you are writing about and commenting on, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you knew that someone was copying all the photos of you that you posted on the Internet and then posted them in other places posing as you, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you knew that people were using the photos and/or personal information from your profile to start a fake Facebook page, or used as their own profile on an adult web site, wouldn't you hide your internet identity too?
- If you have been harassed by people jealous of your success, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you knew someone was copying the photos you post of yourself on the Internet, photo shopping them and then posting your photos on an x-rate web site, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you gave a child up for adoption and didn't want to be found, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
- If you had been a victim of a serious crime, or in the witness protection program, or in fear that the person you testified against would find you and come after you, wouldn't you hide your Internet identity too?
Now, there are 2 reasons why I don't post my photos or too much personal information about myself on the Internet, and why I use a couple different aliases. The first reason is because I have had some of the things I listed above happen to me. The other reason is because I want to prevent/avoid crazy things, like I listed above, from happening to me.
Keep in mind that there are ...
- Identity thieves.
- People that will verbally attack you because you wrote something they didn't like or agree with.
- People who will try to ruin your Internet reputation/brand because they didn't like the article you wrote, the comment you left, the color of your skin, or your success.
- Bosses that do check up on their employees and watch their every move on the Internet.
- Potential employers that will research your name on the Internet and find your blogs, comments you left, and profiles you have.
- Ex spouses serching the Internet.
- Criminals serching the Internet looking for another victim.
I cringe every time I read comments in a forum, on a networking site or in a comment box that says, "Profile pictures should be a requirement." or "It should be requirement to have a competed profile". The members of one social networking site that I belong to were pushing for it to be required for all members to have a real photo of themselves instead of a picture of an avatar or photo of their choosing. Are you kidding me! I don't want my photo posted, my child's photo posted, the city I live in, my age, my e-mail address or all the businesses I have and social networking sites I belong to posted. Some people have every part of their profiles filled out and share a lot of personal information and photos. That's ok, it's their choice. However, I should not be made to feel bad if I don't. I should not be denied a membership if I choose not to.... and I should always have the option of how much I want to reveal. Do you agree?
Well, I hope this article gives you something to think about, some food for thought so to speak. I'm not trying to change anyone's mind, I just wanted to give you something to think about that you might not have otherwise thought of. Yes, people do hide behind the computer, but many of them have valid reason. Please be sensitive to that if you aren't already.