Lessons in Location Privacy and Twitter – Sharing Who, Where, and When

Would you post a tweet that read “I’m going to be at XXX place on 4th Ave.  in the corner table at 6:15 PM tonight”... I doubt you would, however, contests on Twitter are encouraging people to do exactly that! Privacy and social media seem to be on the minds of many, however, for the most part, nobody really seems to care or really be going to any effort to protect their privacy – perhaps to many it simply isn’t a big concern. I suppose, privacy and safeguarding one’s privacy is just not that big of a deal, until something scary or creepy happens! It really is much like the old “backing up your data” issue where most of us admit that we really should be protecting ourselves and be regularly backing up that valuable data, however, how often do we really do it? Eventually, not backing up your data will bite you in the butt!

So where is the inspiration for this post coming from? Well, those of you who know or follow me are aware that I really like baseball and I’m also a Rockies fan. Recently I noticed a contest on Twitter being run by the @Rockies official account. The idea here is for fans that are planning on attending a game later on a particular day, they tweet their seat number and a special hashtag (#Roxpromo) for a chance to be selected to take part in special between inning activities and competitions. Obviously you can see where I’m going here.  A browse of the hashtag on Twitter (which is open to all) reveals a lengthy list of fans who have just made public the time and location of where they will be located in Coor’s Field. Think about it… kinda creepy isn’t it? Just another little privacy concern that  those who tweet should be aware of. What’s even more disturbing about this example is that many of the people tweeting for this are young fans – would you want your daughter sharing such information??