Tigerlilly Quinn: Pictures, privacy and social media

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Pictures, privacy and social media



I've written before about digital footprints and the effect this blog may have on my family (Wilf in particular). It's something I think about often, but like I mentioned in my post before, I think the benefits of the internet outweigh the potential risks. So many people share their photos and photos of their children on social networks that I doubt there is a child around who won’t have some digital footprint by the time they start school.

Tom and I have spoken about protecting our privacy on social media networks when it comes to posting pictures on here, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram...
A few years ago I posted a picture on my blog of a parcel I had got at work and you could see the postcode clearly spelt out on the package. I didn't think anyone was even reading my blog and saw it as nothing more than a harmless photo, but it wasn't until Tom saw it that I realised how silly I had been. I know this might sound scary, but this is just one of the many personal details we’re recommended to withhold to a greater degree, as you never know whose eyes it might fall on. Consequently I don't take pictures outside my home, though I have taken pictures on our street, but I try not to name street names when I talk on the internet. I also don't post pictures on Instagram when I take them, but around two hours later so we are no longer at that place. I think these are good measures, sometimes I wonder if I could/should do more.

A week or so ago my friend Katie found out that someone had been using pictures of her daughter on a Facebook page and pretending her daughter was hers. Such a shocking experience, I can't even imagine. I also found a Instagram user had taken a photo of mine, not pretending to be me but using it in their feed. I sometimes wonder if my pictures or pictures of Wilf are being used elsewhere, I know there are some ways of finding out if your pictures are being used but honestly, even with these methods, watermarks, etc there is still the possibility that they are.

What are your thoughts on sharing pictures of your children on the internet and via social media networks?

I was encouraged to write this post as part of a PR activity, but all words and thoughts are my own.

15 comments:

jess lewis said...

Im afraid the world is full of people with unfortunate mental health issues, who have suffered losses as well as the more sinister motives- you put it out there and its there for the taking, I think thats got be accepted. having your location plain to see and not being able to opt out of that bugs me on instagram though - and i worry about my daughter who like all 18 year olds merrily snaps away and uploads constantly.

Hyggelig Sarah said...

Oh no, this post seems very appropriate as I think I saw you and Wilf in St Werburghs today, I felt very stalky as I had just been telling my partner the 'Mr Daddy' story from your blog (a blatant attempt to encourage his broodiness, ha ha) and then there you were! Thought I'd better fess up so you don't think you do have a stalker! :D

I remember my Dad totally freaking out when he saw my Flickr account and telling me off for posting pictures of my street/house etc, I'd never even thought about it and kind of thought he was overreacting - I hate having to think of worst case scenarios, but I guess social media can lull you into a bit of a false sense of security sometimes. I'm more careful now. That's pretty disturbing about your friend's pictures, poor thing :(

Daniella said...

I post pictures of my children to my facebook page, blog and instagram account all of the time, I had never really been bothered about my privacy before but I probably should start being a bit more careful about taking pics of my home etc.

Colleen @ hello olive said...

Oh no, that is so awful (and just plain creepy) for your friend. I have never liked posting pics of my kids online until I joined Instagram. Somehow because the screen is so teeny it makes it easier for me to let myself share photos of them. But I must admit this post has got me thinking again...

Jess@AlongCameCherry said...

I've been blogging for two and a half years and as you know it's only recently that I've started to have doubts about what I post. I think the older Cherry gets, the more I need to consider what I'm doing as she's getting to the age where she is a real little person but she isn't yet old enough to tell me she is happy with what I'm doing. Plus Matt isn't really very happy about people knowing so much about her, I used to think he was being over the top but I totally see where he is coming from now so I am trying to make my blog more about me and my thoughts instead of about them. I have also made my Instagram private and am trying to use less photos of their faces, well Cherry's especially. It's weird as I honestly didn't have any concerns at all about a year ago, it's a tricky one xx

mummydaddyme said...

It is so hard. After what happened to me last week I have really sat and thought about it carefully. I put it in my shoes and I am close enough to my family and Mum that I would have LOVED it if she had done something like this for me when I was younger. So I hope that my girls will like my blog and my memories too. As they start to get bigger, I think I will be more careful, especially when Mads is at school, but I always think about whether they would find anything embarrassing. At the moment the stories and tales are just innocent toddler days, but as they both get bigger I think I will have to be more wary. I was so upset that my photos were being stolen, and I still am, but I just have to keep thinking that they are just innocent snapshots. It is strange to think of all the different people looking at them though, but I guess that is just part and parcel of blogging. The pro's of blogging far outweigh the negatives for me. x

Lucy - www.londonloafing.com said...

This is something I really struggle with because my son is such a massive part of my life, but I don't want to share everything (or give away too many details). Even things like a school uniform can give too much away. This happened with someone I follow on Twitter. And I read her (highly personal) blog - via Mumsnet. Through a photo I realised her son was at the same school as mine, and even though I don't know her, I know far too much about her life. Very personal details about her life! It's easy to fit things together. Bloggers do have to be careful especially if they are blogging about their kids who have no choice in the matter!

fritha strickland said...

oh how funny!! Was it are the Farm, Farm cafe or pub? haha imagine if I overheard you telling the story! A friend of mines partner was totally against her putting ANY pics of their newborn on FB, she had to email her friends them which now seems so old fashioned! x

fritha strickland said...

it's hard one isn't it, I think I wouldn't feel weird about my personal FB page as it's private..but then again, how private is it I wonder? x

fritha strickland said...

that's true, and I think it's kind of sad if we are always thinking of the worst case scenario. I think you can disable the location thing on Insta, mine doesn't come up? xx

fritha strickland said...

ha yes I know what you mean! Somehow because I only use it on my phone it seemed less like it was 'on the internet'?? but when I saw my pic on someones Insta it really threw me! xx

fritha strickland said...

I know what you mean, I often think Tom over reacts as he is not really into the whole social media thing but on the other hand I'm SO immersed in it that I can lose perspective too. I did make my Insta private for a while but it was really annoying accepting new followers all the time ha! I also thought I post the exact same pics on my blog so wasn't sure how effective it would be. It's defo a tricky one! xx

fritha strickland said...

you are right, I would have LOVED it if my parents did this for me, I treasure the many photos they took of us and always showed all my friends them whenever they came over so I defo wasn't embarrassed about any childhood pics. I also think whilst there are horrible people out there it would be sad if a few weirdos stopped us from doing something nice with/for our families and I agree the pro's defo outweigh the cons :) xx

fritha strickland said...

I'm always really surprised when people show pics of their kids in their uniforms! I'm sure people could probably work out which nursery W goes to but I would never say online. That must be so odd that you know so much about her and she has no idea you read her blog. I have had on a couple of occasions people come up to me to tell me they read the blog and although they have always been very lovely it does bring it back to home that this thing is very public! xx

jess lewis said...

i shall have to figure it out !! lol more techno fail for me - im so glad though no one had camera phones/facebook when i was a teen lol no evidence at all to incriminate me ;)

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