Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Privacy

I'm debating the wisdom of maintaining a public blog.

Nothing has happened, but my life is changing. I am about to move into a new place where I know googling and online research are matter of course. The Husband has already taken most everything into a private or protected mode. Since I am associated with him, I probably must do the same.

Blogger has introduced a privacy setting so that only those who I list can read this weblog. I have not set it yet, but I plan to set it before the end of this month.

I've always assumed that anything I put online would be spread around the world in a matter of seconds. I tried to not post anything I thought would be possibly used against me. However, it seems that almost anything I could post -- anything I could think or say -- has the potential to be considered negatively by someone else, and that many people spend their time looking for things about which they can get disturbed.

In particular, the few times I've posted about someone else (specifically, about work) could haunt me in my search for new employment. They could also haunt my husband through me in his new world. I can't undo those posts and I don't particularly want to. Deleting them would do nothing -- they are cached somewhere. All I can do is make it very difficult for anyone to connect them to me.

Thus, I will be taking this weblog private. It bothers me that it has come to this, but one downside of the Interwebinet is that transparency is really subject to interpretation. If I don't want to constantly censor myself or wonder what thing that appears to me to be completely innocent will be interpreted in such a way as to hurt my husband, then I must take some control over who can access my information.

If you are one of those few people who give a damn what I think or say, please leave me a comment here and let me know. I'll arrange some method of getting your email address so I can put you on the list of those people able to access my blog. If I already have your email, assume I'll put you on the list until you discover I didn't (which may mean I don't really have your email.)

UPDATE: Blogger Help doesn't say how the privacy settings affect feeds, and I know many of you use feeds. However, it did point out some options I hadn't noticed that prevent most search engines from crawling the blog. I can also set an option that people must come to the URL to read and won't just "happen" via a search. So, I've made those changes and will keep things open for now.

I don't relish the idea of either censoring myself extensively or having to hide behind a wall, but I am concerned for my husband's sake. If these changes prove sufficient, then that's all I'll do.

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