Fullrate; the Aftermath
Well who would have though 140 characters could have lead to such a flurry of tweets, articles, blog posts, and comments? Not I, that's for sure. Now that I have emerged - dignity intact - on the other side, I thought I might as well write a quick follow-up post (if you're wondering what I'm on about, read my last post 'Fullrate & Big Brother').
Not that there's that much to say in regards to the actual issue. I mean, most of the articles ultimately said the same thing. Some failed to mention that I was happy about this whole exchange, which was a little annoying, but most took this in to consideration. It's been interesting hearing all the varying views on the subject. All of which (bar one little very angry troll) all agree that Fullrate in no way violated my privacy, and that they had demonstrated good customer service.
In hindsight, I do think that a more suitable way of contacting me would have been through Twitter (why-oh-why do they not have an active profile yet!) but as luck would have it; I don't care about the email. I wouldn't want every brand/company I tweet about emailing me of course, which is why a Tweet, or even a DM ('direct message' via Twitter) would have been better, and is of course, how most communication via Twitter is carried out. Not through search, database check, and email. I do wonder why my tweet was 'chosen'. I know that mine was not the only unhappy tweet (when I first encountered problems with my router, I had searched for '#Fullrate' on Twitter, only to find quite a few complaints). I presume it was because I was easier to find in their system, but who knows.
It was nice to read that Forbrugerrådet (Danish Consumer Council) admitted that they spoke too soon regarding the matter. I hope anyone who believed that this was a breach of privacy took that into consideration (did anyone think it was a breach?!), and it was also nice to read all the comments on my blog and elsewhere that were positive, and reflected my beliefs. At the very least, I'm happy that my little tweet sparked some interest in Twitter.
It does surprise me that none of the articles ever picked up on the fact that the original journalist was inspired for her article after seeing a picture of Fullrate's original email on my Facebook profile.
As it happens, I've started noticing issues or articles relating to privacy and social media wherever I go. In this month's Wired there is an advert for next month's magazine, which will centre around the end of privacy. As the ad states; "Every day your emails, financial transactions and status updates are mined for data by corporate interests and government agencies. How the age of transparency is killing confidentiality - and why you need to get over it." Indeed. Of course I can understand why this might give some people sleepless nights, but there are ways by which you can secure your information. It might be in the small print, but it is there. People can't run around complaining that their information is being mined when it's right there, for all the world to see.
Did you ever hear about Tinkebell? She's a Dutch artist who once skinned her cat (after it was dead, I might add) and made it in to a purse. Sure, cat lovers might protest, but the difference between that and a leather purse? Who knows. Anywho, of course people flipped out, and soon enough she received death threats and all sorts of other hate mail. Then (and this is the bit I love), using the sender's email addresses, she Googled away, and soon had addresses, photos, status updates, videos, education details, work details - suffice to say, a huge amount of information about those who had emailed her. Then she published this all in a big book. Of course, it didn't last long - no permission was given to use the information - but the fact remains that all the information was just there, waiting for someone to find it. Wish I had that book...
Then of course, there's Meltwater Buzz. Meltwater Buzz is an "an innovative social media monitoring tool that enables comprehensive tracking and analysis of user-generated content on the web." It "enables users to monitor more than 200 million blogs, micro-blogs, social networks, forums, video and photo websites, product reviews and other social media sites to gain a better understanding about end-user sentiment on hot topics, new products, companies and the competition." The heads of those who thought Fullrate finding my tweet was a breach of privacy are probably exploding right about now.
What I can't find out if this includes private profiles. I presume it doesn't, but you never know.
While I too find this rather extreme, I am not - and simply can not be - surprised.
Employers Google potential employees and people Google (not to mention Facebook) their exs. There's no difference in a company wondering what their customers are saying about them. If you don't want to be another statistic, don't tweet/Facebook/blog about brands and companies. But hey, if you do, then something good might just come out of it. I'm proof!
If you're remotely interested then here are links to some of the articles about the whole saga.
Fullrate - yes!