Before this whole NSA thing, the Target data breach, and now I find out that there are hackers who can lock down your computer with a password only they know, I was happy going online. I am a poster girl. Not that kind if poster girl. I like to post on the major news sites like Yahoo!, CNN, and MSN. Now I am rethinking putting my identity out there for all to see.
I also like my anonymity and privacy. Think of it as a dressing room. Whatever I am doing in there is my business, no one else’s. When it comes to my online activity, privacy is number one. People hacking into my computer or tracing me through cookies or add-ons is just creepy. But the thing is, I still like to post online. It’s just that I have to be extra careful. It’s a girl thing, you know? I am a woman. I want my voice to be heard as a woman. Just because the government is being creepy doesn’t mean I have to give up my gender identity or my First Amendment rights.
Truth is, I am sick of it. So I decided to start this blog and express my opinions whether anyone likes it or not. I’m independent that way. I can hide my virtual self in a number of ways, limiting any crap from the government and avoid being targeted by any number of special interest or advocacy groups. I think these advocacy groups target women to join more than men. Don’t ask me why I feel that way. I have very strong opinions about some things and realize what I say isn’t going to sit well with everyone.
You have to realize that this approach also has its downside. I have been virtually spayed. Instead of “I am woman” I now have become “I am anyman.” There is a good possibility that any good ideas I have will be lost in virtual reality. And considering the hackers and data thieves out there, all doing it for money, there is a better chance that someone will use my ideas to “generate income.” Yeah, right.
Off my ideas. That thought gets me PO’d at times, but personally I don’t think it’s worth the risk of exposing myself to these same people.
I thought about changing my mind and putting my real identity out there. If I do that, and obviously a lot of people do that if you look at Facebook, Twitter, and a lot of others, then my personal info is out there for potential employers to look at. I have read the horror stories. No thanks. Add them to the government who is always trying to look up my dress and it just doesn’t seem right. Or safe.
Then there are those “Instacheck” database services that you pay to get the dirt on your friends or potential boyfriend. Of course, if they’re popular you can always go to TMZ. But the information they provide is neither guaranteed to be accurate nor up to date. If they put something out there about me that is false, I can’t undo it in the minds of whoever reads it. The damage to your image is done and possibly your reputation as well.
At the beginning of this I mentioned the newest fad among the creeps who lockdown your computer with a password they only know. What I didn’t mention is they hold your computer for a ransom payment. Pay up and you get your computer back. Maybe. Who’s to say they can’t get at the contents of your computer? If you pay the ransom by credit card, they have your credit card number. It seems like a lose-lost situation.
My number one goal is to be financially successful. These lazy, international losers who decide they want to live off my hard work don’t deserve one dollar of my hard earned money. This is very important to me right now, and in the big picture I think there is too much risk to put my face out there.
OK. I agree. There are trade-offs I am making. I have thought about it too much. The more I think about it, the more I think I worry too much. If that’s possible. For now, I am willing to make the trade-offs to keep my name off the grid. Right now it seems to be well worth it.