Using your photos in Social Networking

Based on a survey* I am conducting, about 75% of all respondents are sharing their photos electronically. Most people are posting their pictures online (Facebook, Picasa) or are simply emailing them to friends and family. It is so easy to share pictures within the social networking sites, but there are a few things to consider in an effort to protect your family as well as your rights to your images.

Many newer cameras models (particularly those on mobile/smart phones) have added a GPS locator feature. What that means is when you take pictures, the GPS information on where you are when the picture was taken, can potentially be embedded into the metadata of the image. There could be a potential risk here if you are posting pictures of where you live or where you children go to school since the location data may be attached to those images. Additionally, if you are away from home, say on vacation, and are posting your vacation pictures online, then it becomes abundantly clear no one is at home. Check the user guide for your camera to learn how to disable this feature.

One of the biggest reasons to post pictures electronically is to share them with your network. Facebook now asks you whether or you want to share high resolution pictures. If one of your friends wants to [right-click] Save As to grab a copy of that image, you can control its usability. Do you want others to be able to download and reuse your high resolution image?

Tagging is another wonderful feature that’s common for Facebook but also in other applications. As a matter of fact, you can tag pictures in Windows too! Tagging is another way to conveniently organize pictures, often by people. Keep in mind though, that when you are tagging in Facebook, the people you tag have the opportunity to un-tag themselves. It’s really their choice whether or not they want to be associated with the image you have posted.

So, what do I do when sharing images online? Well, first I make a 12×12 scrapbook page that includes multiple pictures as well as the ‘story’ that goes with them. Then I save it as a .jpeg and post. That way, my friends & family can see many images with one click and I can feel safer sharing online.

* to participate in the survey click this link http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/CJJGPML

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