The world we live in today and your children who will grow up in it tomorrow

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In a not to distant future. Where Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have become archaic relics from a distant generation. It’s in this world, that your children will grow up and live. As they grow, they’ll eventually want to know how it was living in your era. They’ll want to see what the “old – school” retro methods of communication were and how their parents used them. Nothing will interest them more than seeing how their parents dressed and what their parents were like during their teen years. All this and more they’ll want to know, they’ll want to know so that they can see how ancient and foreign our lifestyle was compared to theirs. So that they can learn from our mistakes and grow to be a better generation.

This future your kids will grow-up in will put shame to all the technological advances currently available today. Computers will have faster processors, larger hard drives, smarter programs and better artificial intelligence coupled with machine learning. In this future, someone will have the idea to crawl at web archives. This someone will build databases on users during our present generations – time period. Maybe even by that time, this whole NSA issue will have come to a resolution.  Enough time might have passed for this person to get a FOIA (Freedom of information act) request and get a copy of the NSA’s monitoring of the internet from this period of time. Whatever the method, the internet will provide a detail reenactment of everything and everyone.

This is when, you should become very worried. You should be worried because someday your kids are going to put your name into search query and they’ll get back everything you ever posted on the internet. It’s in this not to distant future, that your entire web presence/identity including every opinion expressed, pictures/videos uploaded and comments made will comeback to haunt you. But thankfully this future is many decades away. There is still time to correct everything, right? This very future that is described above that seems so distant, so far away. That future has already arrived, it’s our present day world. A world, where instantaneous communication from one hemisphere to another is child’s play. Where data storage, processing power and artificial intelligence grow exponentially year after year. It’s in this world that maintenance on your online identity is very,very important. In the next decade your Google search rank could very well be your resume.

There are opinions you’ve probably expressed on some old and forgotten message board, some body of text you’ve sent in good confidence on some social network no longer in existence. Somewhere on the internet, is something from your past just waiting to be dug-up and slap you in the face. Don’t believe me, just scroll back a few months in your Facebook timeline (a few years if your Facebook account is that old) and see if you agree with some of the statuses and posts you made. Just exactly how much can be learned about you from your online identity? According to many researchers plenty. According to our government enough to warrant the spying of citizens internet lives.

Common sense dictates that your views, stances and general outlook on life will changed as you get older. But in the technological age that we live in, you can become your own worst enemy with comments made in the past. Save your future self the headache of having to explain things and be mindful of the type of content you’re posting. Because once it’s out there, it’s out there. With Facebook walls being memorialized after someone dies, and the inability to completely delete a Facebook profile. It makes you wonder, if what you wrote online can’t be deleted when you die what makes you think it will be deleted when you’re alive? As a rule of thumb, anyone wanting to save themselves headaches should remove anything they wouldn’t want their future kids seeing or for that matter anything you wouldn’t want an employer, spouse or tabloid digging up. As the old saying goes, it takes knowledge to know that a tomato is a fruit wisdom to know that it doesn’t belong in a fruit salad. So the reader is asked to use wisdom and discretion when applying the above advice to their internet identity.

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