Raz Chorev | Socially Acceptable..
online presence

Please Rob Me!

How appropriate – my last post was about the great things you can do with the right privacy settings on your social networks.  (A Canadian woman lost her Canadian drivers licence in a bus stop in Sydney, Australia, and I was able to find her and get the DL back in her hands within 12 hours, using information on Google, and Facebook.)

This post shows the other side of privacy, or the danger of putting your details out there. I suppose every coin has two sides. There are people who can find the worst and the negative in everything. We just need to be mindful, that what we do can be used for Good or Evil. That’s all.

To illustrate, today I had a call from a reporter from NineMSN asking about my opinion of a website called PleaseRobMe.com.  (not linked on purpose), where 3 guys in the Netherlands, joined twitter search and Foursquare information, and to get provide “job openings” for robbers!

NineMSN did a story, as media companies do, aggregating the negative effect of the “service”.

I was quoted in the article saying :”It worries me that it’s me listed on the site without my consent,”. Actually – it doesn’t. That’s what comes with publicity – things can be taken out of context, can be used for showcasing positive or negative outcome, as the user pleases.

I’m not scared of being robbed, whilst having coffee. If I did, I would never leave the house! I see Foursquare, and similar services for the good they provide to the business community, and to consumers – providing a source of reliable information (who can you rely on the most, if not your friends?) about the quality of products and services in my area (or places I visit).

As a freelance marketing consultant, I WANT to be found! Potential customers can find me, and if they google my name, they’ll find things I have been involved with, my articles, my clients, my charity work, and my social /business networks. My home address is not listed on any of my social networks, but my business contact details are! That’s how NineMSN found me!
BTW, NineMSN researcher/reporter typed in “Darlinghurst” in the search box, and my name came up. I work in the area (within 10Km) but not necessarily live there!

Did you have a positive or negative experience with having strong online presence?

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  • http://cafedave.net/cafedave/ cafedave

    I suspect that someone who is using social media to organise burglary on a large scale will need to be a careful that their efforts online don’t lead to them being more easily captured.

    A good response to the latest social media beat-up story. Thanks for putting it together!

  • http://tonyhollingsworth.wordpress.com/about Tony Hollingsworth

    Hi Raz,
    You’ve articulated well the good side of being transparent online. As Dave says, the media “beat up” serves social networking well in my opinion.

    Now we have good cause to discuss Foursquare with businesses, since they’ve heard about it!

    As always, education is key, and I’m glad to have you as a friend and supporter of why it is so overwhelmingly worthwhile, not dangerous, to engage in social networking.

    There’s a more serious element to location-based services – of course if you do not wish to be disturbed or prefer privacy, broadcasting your every move won’t help. Let’s just inform people when and why it can be very appropriate to do so, and good for business.

    Thanks for sharing this,
    Tony Hollingsworth

  • http://Www.Seggr.com.au Luke

    The only thing I would say is to make sure you have some authority on the subject, if not, refer it to someone who does. A lot of people will jump at fame, but not think about the repercussions…I.e. If someone reads such am article and then approaches you for greater detail, make sure you can speak with authority. Stoicism can be a challenge for many people with strong online profiles!!

  • http://www.paulwallbank.com Paul Wallbank

    An aspect being missed on the PleaseRobMe beat up is that it’s based on the flawed assumption you live alone.

    In reality, a burglar using this app may well find your partner, flatmate, children or cleaners are there.

    The story is typical of the beat ups being used to discredit Internet and networking tools.

    All it means is gullible people and those who are threatened by the new ways of doing business and connecting with your peers have another excuse to ignore the direction society’s heading.

    In many ways this is a good thing as it clears the field for people like yourself who are embracing and exploring the opportunities.

  • http://www.businessproductivitygenius.com Helen Crozier

    Concurring with above.

    If you are foolish enough to blurt out your address or other confidential details to anyone you don’t trust then you deserve to be robbed.

    As per Paul Wallbank’s comment most of the time I have a teenager of some description at the house – and if not my ferocious rottweiler would make mincemeat of any social media location aware expert type robber.

    Just ridiculous. My dream would be to get older people in our communities using these connectivity tools – perhaps then there would be a smaller chance of someone dying in their bed and it not being discovered for 3 weeks as happened in our street some years ago.

    Let’s start finding creative ways of changing lives with these inexpensive uncomplicated technologies. No more paranoia please!

  • http://www.petproblemsolved.com.au Jo righetti

    Get a dog! Also having loud music (teenage sons and me) and a drum kit should deter any would-be robbers!



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