A few weeks ago, I started writing about a couple of things related to privacy on the web (which is a topic that I think many of us think about in some capacity).
You can catch up on everything I’ve written about thus far, but this post is going to follow-up with something I mentioned in the previous post.
Specifically, I mentioned a simple alternative for not giving out your email address.
Although Burner Mail works well, I also think it’s worth using third-party services for your standard email, too. After all, it’s worth having your privacy protected there, too, right?
BurnerMail (and services like Throttle) are great for providing temporary email addresses with which you can still access those messages for some time.
But what if you’re looking for an actual email service that respects privacy and, say, doesn’t parse the information in your inbox to generate advertisements (or other similar functionality)?
Two weeks ago, I started talking a bit about my concerns regarding privacy – which may be the same as yours – and decided I’d start running down a list of things that I’m trying, using, and doing to adhere more to privacy-centric software and services.
Here’s the thing though:
- what I’m comfortable with using may not be the same for you (and vice versa),
- and privacy and security are not terms that I use interchangeably.
Going into this series, I want to make sure I’m working off of a consistent definition of privacy. You can see the whole definition here but for the purpose of these articles, I’m going to be using the following:
Privacy grants us freedom from the public; concealed.
So any service that compromises that definition on any level would be something that violates privacy. Furthermore, it’s hard to find things that are purely private is near impossible so we have to make tradeoffs.
And I’m going to lead with that.
This isn’t something that’s really WordPress-development related. It is, perhaps, tangentially so and it’s something that I’m likely going to be talking about on this blog and in a few of the upcoming podcasts so I thought I’d go ahead and bring it up now.
For many of us, we’re well aware of the privacy implications of the software and services many of us use on a day-to-day basis even if we’re not sure just how this information is shared.
Anyway, since this is something that does tie back to WordPress, data-ownership, and so on, it seems fitting to discuss at least periodically.
I think there’s a level we’ve been comfortable with certain aspects of privacy and how data is shared (some have a higher threshold than others for it, sure) but it’s beginning to reach an unsettling level for me.
But let me back up.
I guess the question should be a bit more specific:
How do you manage content ownership with photo sharing services?
Sure, we could talk a lot about a number of different services that allow you to share content – links, videos, short form content, even blog content – and so on, but photo sharing services are kind of all of the rage right now.
And I completely understand why, too. But I’ll come back to this in a minute.
With that said, I’m genuinely curious about your opinion as it relates to services like Instagram and other similar applications.