The Internet is no place to air your dirty laundry

By Brian Figurski

I remember a time when you actually had to interact with someone in person to resolve an issue. For me, this usually ended in a bloody nose and running home to my mother.

Now every intimate debacle is posted on the web for the world of spectators to judge, like and hashtag.

Is it impossible to keep anything private anymore?

Facebook has become an external extension of our lives, sharing every thought, location and photograph without remote hesitation.

Personally, I utilize the Internet to write sexist jokes and share disturbing pictures of dysfunctional, gruesome looking genitals, but that’s just weirdo me.

None of my friends really need to know what I’m eating or my geographical location when I’m not home. I feel this also would prompt them to break in my house and rob me blind.

In fact, less than ten percent of those people I actually converse with on a regular basis in the real world, and I’m positive most of them don’t give a hoot how I feel ever.

It’s become an addiction that has seeped its way into the fabric of our existence. It’s almost as bad as the crack epidemic of the 80s, but a lot less fun.

Doing some research for this assignment, I heard about a cousin who was Facebooking (goodness, it can even be used as a verb now) while she was in labor.

While a human being was being born, a preoccupied mother felt the need to clasp her phone with a death-grip and scream in all caps, rather than interact with her baby daddy in real life.

Unknown if she immediately threw her newborn to a delivery nurse so she could tweet a picture.

The disregard for privacy is repulsive. The other day I was perusing my newsfeed on Facebook to see one of my “friends” quarrels with people not answering their phone. Then I scrolled through the subsequent 19 comments between the two parties bickering and insulting each other, like we used to do around the old flagpole of the elementary school.

Another “friend” recently got some kind of ticket, and decided to post three subsequent statuses proclaiming — let’s just say he indirectly quoted N.W.A.

When you go out and apply for jobs, people know how the Internet is used. You are scouted out on a search engine. Everything tagged to your name, belittling police officers or scrutinizing women or pictures of you half-naked passed out with a 40 ounce and doodled with a Sharpie is at their fingertips.

I know this personally, as a friend (the real life kind) called me in an uproar because I had tagged him in an activity — drugs. He did not get his job at the DEA.

Now the timeline has become an even more revealing tool.

I can use the shortcut to find out what you were up to on any date you had been a member to the website.

I was even tempted to go back through and relive the entire cinematic plot of one of my failed relationships, and then cried.

It disturbs me what people will put on the Internet, where there is no real erasing. Once your thoughts are posted, they’re on there.

Memories fade but a text document does not.

At least until some electro-magnetic plague wipes out our worldwide connector, but then we’re screwed for all different reasons.

Now excuse me, I have to go post a link to this article on my timeline.

Contact multimedia reporter Brian Figurski via email at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @WhatDidBeefSay