Facebook is not a friend

 “Simply ‘Unfriending’ wasn’t enough.”

 To Sara Ashley O’Brien, she spent 10 minutes downloading over 14 years of her Facebook data and was shocked to see Facebook had much of the information that she thought she had trashed.

 Facebook had saved her grandmother’s phone number who didn’t have Facebook nor an email to start with, conversations from her ex of seven years which brought painful memories of when she looked through the conversations, and places and websites that had her contact information whom she didn’t even know existed.

 It even went as far as having every contact she has ever put down in her phone, even ones she didn’t add to her most recent phone. I don’t have Facebook currently and never had one but just to see what websites have my information and how public it really is, I googled my name. The things that came up were shocking and sort of creepy.

 It had tons of pictures of a guy I liked in the seventh grade, baby pictures of me, pictures of me and my grandmother, pictures of my brother, everything I saved on Pinterest, and probably the most creepy of all every picture of the Voyager staff including all the articles I wrote, and some of them I don’t ever remember being publishing online.

 With the Russian meddling exposing 126 million Americans to content generated by the Russian Government and with the Cambridge Analytica scandal where 87 million users’ data was shared with political consulting firms linking to Donald Trump, I believe that Facebook needs to be regulated as soon as possible.

 With more and more pushes on social media and finding many ways to connect with your friends, sharing your location has been pushed and can be used on literally every social media platform nowadays. Including a new Snapchat feature where you can share your location and if you minimize the camera screen that pops up when you first open the app, it gives you a map of where you are located with your avatar standing on the spot of your location and the location of your friends.

 I’ve used this at night and it even shows the avatars sleeping when someone is not using Snapchat at night acting as if they’ve “gone to sleep.” As well as Snapchat, Instagram is also tricking their users into turning on their location to receive icons that can appear on pictures.

 Some icons have different filters and stickers you can place on photos you take. Snapchat limits the amount of face filters you have if you don’t have your location turned on. I think this should be eliminated and should be listed as an option (not a wall) where you can’t receive the cool filters others have if they have their location turned on.

 Location sharing should be an option. Along with location, things such as allowing comments and messages from strangers, emails from websites you recently visited, and pop-up ads should all be optional to protect the privacy of any user.

  Facebook has been known to lean conservatives into conservative feed and liberals into liberal feed on their home screens. Facebook is only showing them what they want to see.

 This can lead, and has already, to defensive and hateful speech posted on Facebook from people outraged when someone that doesn’t agree with their views comes across inflammatory posts which only get attention and create a domino effect. Because this issue doesn’t seem to have an end in sight as things operate as is and because Facebook is affecting our elections and our personal privacy, I support the claim that Facebook should be regulated.