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The currency of the internet is personal data

The Currency of the Internet is Personal Data

There seems to be a lot of surprise surrounding the amount of personal data that is being used by websites and social networks, as if all of a sudden this is new. Yes, Facebook in particular has received a lot of flak for its secrecy of using personal data for Marketing and Advertising purposes.

The secrecy should be more upsetting than the fact that in this instance, Facebook uses personal data to substitute for dollars. Many ask why… the answer? Facebook is a business.

As much as we (the users) like to think that Facebook is ours and arguably, we have helped build Facebook, since it is after all, a user based platform.  However, it is a service, regardless of the fun we have, the connections we make, or the farms we tow. Facebook is a business, just like any other corporation, they too have to make money in order to provide us with the ability to create status updates, pages for our businesses and mafia wars.

It may be harder to fathom the idea that they use our personal information to pass on to third-party apps and advertisers.  Perhaps to some, this is trading morals for another M word… money.
But this is not the first website to do this, nor will it be the last. Any site where you share ANY type of information serves a purpose for that site. Mostly, the information is used for Marketing purposes and to gather analytical data to decipher what their targeted market is, age group, location and gender that their products appeal to, this includes auto-connecting even your social sites without having to fill out a sign-up form. You have to pay for convenience too.

Nothing is free, and just because you are not having to pull out your credit card or having to use your PayPal account, doesn’t mean you are not “paying” with something. Sites like Google, Twitter, and any site that you sign into… they then have some sort of personal data.

It is the Internet, as much as we love it and use it; we must never completely lose our inhibitions, our common sense or the responsibility of our own personal data. Since after all, websites, including Facebook would not have personal information if we (the user) thought twice about posting it.

With that said, we must get use to the fact that the more social we get on the web, the more information will be provided and since we are accustomed to not having to pay for sites like Facebook, we must prepare ourselves that the currency of the Internet is Personal Data.

What do you think?

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Written by Erin Ryan

Erin Ryan is a writer for various Social Media & Tech blogs and currently works as the Director of Social Media for the Internet Marketing Company, Wikimotive. Erin has a keen understanding of the power of Social Media for business and fervently stays up-to-date.

Creator and head editor of Socialeyezer She enjoys finding the latest in social media, tech and geek culture. Erin often expresses her thoughts and opinions on TheErinRyan. Connect through Erin Ryan's Profile .

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