What’s this Internet thing all about, anyway?

I recently submitted a comment on Sally J Shim’s blog in response to her post about internet privacy in general and specifically her photographs being used without permission or proper accreditation. Here’s what I said:

Unfortunately, many people just search Google Images for content for their blog, nabbing pictures without even thinking of crediting original sources–if they even get it from the original source, and not from someone else who has already reposted a repost! I’ve heard some freaky stories along these same lines. There was one woman in particular, a photographer, whose entire blog was copied, nearly verbatim, by some ridiculous (and I’m guessing unstable) person, along with images of her children who this person renamed and claimed as her own. Creepy.

It hits you hard when you put your own world out there only to have your trust violated by a stranger. The internet is a strange place; I’ve been “online” and making websites and posting a journal (in one form or another) since 1995, and it has grown incredibly fast and virtually unfettered, which is a wonderful and sometimes very scary thing.

I would like to think that people use the same set of general etiquette used in the “offline” world (is there such a place?), but that’s pretty much a pipe dream. Due to the anonymity of the web and the fact that basic human nature leads us to be envious and deceptive, you can take pretty much anything from anywhere and present it as your life. How can I really know who you are? How can you really know who I am?


Image taken from SEOpher, which was taken from Ethical Media, which was originally taken from The Opte Project under Creative Commons license.

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One thought on “What’s this Internet thing all about, anyway?

  1. urban craft says:

    Hey, have you heard about this chick:
    apparently someone used pictures of her kids claiming they were her own. That’s scary, but really once your stuff is online, it can become anyones. I also usually snag cool pictures of stuff I want to make, but then I don’t remember where I got it from. Most of the time I just say, “I can’t remember where I found it” but never claim it as my own original idea. I rarely have any of those.

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