Welcome to the first full week of 2015!

While you were away focused on Christmas, New Years, and what ever other end of the year stuff was going on in your life, there have been a few changes in your online privacy that might have slipped by.

The big one that has some folks worried is regarding Facebook.

Woman browsing tablet

Still using Facebook? Then you have agreed to their new Terms Of Service that they rolled out on New Years Day.

I was reading this article last month that describes some of the changes.

Most folks will ignore the changes and just keep doing what ever they were doing before.

Others will become paranoid and go the other direction and cancel their Facebook account.

I urge you to do neither one of those two options.

First off, Facebook is one of the most popular online social media platforms that allows you to connect with friends, family and others in a way that was not possible 15 years ago (Pre-FB).

Second, act as a responsible adult online and offline.  Don’t live a hidden life or do stuff that would make your grandma disown you.

Third, Facebook is only one of the online services that is tracking you.  Google is another big one.

Android phone users need to have a Google Account.  Even if you use some other search engine like Bing or Yahoo!, or some other email address other than a Gmail account, if you have an android phone, you are connected to Google.

What does Google know about you?  Plenty.  Check out a few things in this article.

Face it.  You and I have no online privacy if someone really wants to know about us.

But before you go completely offline and try and hide,  there are a few good things about all this data collection and Facebook in their new T.O.S. spell it out pretty clearly.

Most online services are free or have free versions.  It still costs money to run these free services and the money comes from advertisers. Just like broadcast radio and television is paid for by advertising.

As a 55 year old guy, I don’t care about some of the ads I see on TV about baby diapers or toilet paper.  I could care less about many of the ads I see on TV.  The internet and all of this data that is being collected is changing the ads I see online.  It is changing the ads you see online too.

Imagine a world where the only marketing messages you are exposed to are about things you care about.  That is what Google, Facebook and all the others are trying to create.

The bad side of a lack of online privacy is not coming from these folks.  It’s the data breaches that occur at a greater and greater pace then ever before due to a combination on better hacking tools and outdated security used by those we trust such as our banks and credit card companies.

But that’s another story.

By the way, one of the fastest growing areas of marketing that businesses large and small are planning on expanding again this year is the digital world.  If you own a business, or are in charge of the advertising and marketing, I can help.  A few years ago the parent company of the radio stations I work for, (WOWO Radio in Fort Wayne and Federated Media in Indiana), began expanding our services and marketing expertise and formed a division known as Federated Digital Solutions.  We brought in some of the best and brightest and have partnered with some of the worlds best vendors of digital marketing solutions and are continuing to stay ahead of the curve in this digital world.

Contact me to discuss how I can help.