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If you are reading this right now, then you have already made a digital footprint. Most people in the world have already made a digital footprint, whether they intend to or not. The world of complete privacy is long behind us. We are living in an information age; an age where almost anyone can be found online by the click of a few buttons.
From Facebook to Snapchat, most people use social media to connect with specific friends and family. People post with the intent that a specific group of people who they have selected will be the only ones viewing it. Sure, many people don’t mind who sees their posts, but others are counting on the idea that they choose who will view their post. This idea used to be a promise, however this is no longer the case.
In fact, now days you cant make an account without agreeing to terms and conditions that the medium is not responsible if something gets hacked, or ends up where it wasn’t supposed to go. It’s almost just as common to be forced to agree that the content you create is subject to being sold to third parties.
Now why would a third party want to buy someone’s social media posts?
This past May the Denver Police Department spent over $30,000 on surveillance software specifically designed to monitor and collect social media posts across at least a dozen networks.
An article on The Daily Dot suggests that the Denver Police Department purchased a product from Geofeedia, Inc., “a startup whose location-based surveillance wares are routinely exhibited at national security and law enforcement summits across the country.”
“Geofeedia’s products—one of a dozen or so nearly identical tools employed by U.S. law enforcement on a daily basis—include a powerful platform for the interception, aggregation, and storage of online posts across at least a dozen social media networks.”
The article speaks for itself. Denver is not alone. The jurisdiction that you are living in could right now be monitoring and documenting any of your posts, should they find it relevant or suspicious in the slightest.
The moral of the story is that freedom comes with a price, even the freedom to use social media.