How Much of Yourself Should You Give Away? by Richard Parker
It sounds like an old fashioned question about modesty but it’s still as relevant in 21st Century society as it’s ever been.
Everyone is becoming increasingly paranoid about CCTV and the amount of times we’re captured on camera in our everyday lives, but the fact is we’re now more responsible for recording ourselves than anyone else.
You only have to look through the average Facebook news feed to see how much. Clips and pix of moments of our lives at home, with our partners, families and pets continually uploaded for the enjoyment of our friends…and whoever else may be interested.
I don’t want to spook anyone (outside of my writing) but our boundless enthusiasm for instant media may be an ideal way of ‘someone’ building a very solid profile of who we are, where we live, what we do everyday and even when we go on vacation. There have already been myriad cases of people’s homes being broken into because they couldn’t resist posting that pic of themselves drinking that first Mai Tai on the beach.
In my thriller, Stalk Me, I examine not only the perils of putting yourself out there but the threat to an individual after clips of her in the aftermath of a car crash are uploaded by student bystanders. Against her will she becomes an Internet celebrity and the currency
of an online community ready to judge and comment on the worst situation she’s ever experienced.
But there’s consequences for the uploaders as well. Someone starts murdering them and deleting the clips. But this is fiction and poetic justice isn’t always applicable in the capricious world of the Internet.
So, before we upload that clip of the cat being cute maybe we should think twice about exactly what else the clip shows and ask ourselves if we really want EVERYONE to see it.
Like everything, social media should be enjoyed responsibly, in moderation and with as many safeguards as possible.
Richard Parker has been a professional TV writer for twenty-two years and started by submitting material to the BBC. After contributing to a wide variety of TV shows he became a head writer, script editor then producer. His first novel, Stop Me, was shortlisted for the prestigious UK Crime Writers Association John Creasey Dagger Award. He has had two short movies shot – Estranged and Sleep Tight (hitting festivals near you in 2012). More importantly, he has just finished penning a brand new thriller for publication. He has now moved from London to Salisbury but in no way hates London. He divides his time between reading, writing, cooking and visiting old English pubs.
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