We The “Peeple”

If you despise Facebook and don’t use it because you consider it too intrusive and even at times a bit, uh, creepy, well, brace yourself…. because as the Washington Post tells us:

Screen capture of the Washington Post.
Screen capture of the Washington Post.

I have no idea how many of you read me and never make yourself known. And that’s fine. That’s entirely your right, of course.

For those of us more inclined to get involved on “social media, we “like” and can “rate” posts here on WordPress. And we can do much the same on Facebook posts, Twitter, and Instagram, etc. and so on. We can also comment.

But that’s a choice: we join in and do all that, or we opt not to do so.

Theoretically, yes, anyone can already write stuff about you personally on the net somewhere. I suppose what makes this worse is that it is set up precisely for “reviewing” purposes and uses ratings. It will likely attract users to it for precisely those reasons.

Going to some site and reviewing/ rating a business, or a travel destination, or even a book, is not the same thing. They are “products,” not individuals. (Crossing the line into personal attacks on a business owner or an author is another matter.)

So anyone you have ever interacted with on some level who knows your name could “rate” and “review” you as a person.

Free Stock Photo: Illustration of 3rd place ribbon.
Free Stock Photo: Illustration of 3rd place ribbon.

I change names and alter other personal details in my fiction for any non-public figure who is based on a real person. I’ve made only one exception to that rule so far: She is deceased (and I know she is). There is still such a thing out there as a decent respect for fundamental privacy.

And there is also something called “libel.” When anyone can “rate” and “review” anyone in a place created specifically for that gossipy purpose, all bets are off. It’ll be interesting to see what happens.

Have a good Thursday. And, if you are “reviewed,” may you be rated “highly.” 🙂

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Author: “Conventions: The Garden At Paris,” “Passports,” “Frontiers,” and “Distances.” British Airways frequent flier. Lover of the Catskill Mountains...and the 1700s. New novel of 1797-1805, "Tomorrow The Grace," due out in 2019.