Together we have co-written a blog about mothering and writing since 2011 and we continue enjoying the twists and turns of thinking through sharing, disclosure and self-censoring in digital writing situations. As feminists, we are grappling with ways to invoke privacy values and boundary setting in a liberatory tradition that celebrates the female voice and the possibilities of self-expression.

As teachers / writers / scholars, we have a longstanding interest in the reflective, educative, and revelatory nature of personal writing. Does writing a parenting blog necessitate presenting news about close relations and relationships? What is frank and fair and what constitutes stepping over the line in talking about others? What are dangers of unsanctioned digital talk? Are there measures or flexible standards to guide how much to reveal about self and others, and how do these questions play out for bloggers with an online presence?
moving to the question of privacy and online practices
Thursday, 23 March 2017

What's the right word to describe voluntarily surrendering personal and private information that could be used about or against one? The rather old fashioned word wiretapping continues to be used against 3rd party interventions -- when 3rd parties tap into phone or internet conversations to gain privileged information.

Donald Trump has raised the specter of wiretapping as something done to him although his allegations are often unfounded,  floundering and meeting with denial.

Would a word like "open line" best describe the willingness of ordinary citizens to expose their private conversations and information to the online world listening in.  Online users who are interested have learned that privacy settings offer limited protection of one's privacy. I might find my picture advertising a product that I have not endorsed or given permission to be used in this manner. Yet, it's happening online daily.

Posting personal pictures is common place on Instagram and Facebook. If I go on Pinterest and reveal objects and products I like, I've also contributed to consumer profiling. In a world where images and information circulates is there any way to slow down or stop this movement that builds from and encourages invasion of privacy?

We're not government officials or folks with high security clearance due to our state level knowledge, so why are we focusing on this and why does it matter? We need to begin to think about protecting personal private information as critical activism. It's difficult to stop the wave that's washing over us and that carries along with it many personal details we would have thought we own.

How not to be maneuvered and how not to participate is the area of strategising that is difficult and most needed.

Telling people not to use technologies that they have come to rely upon is bound to be unpopular or unattractive. Many of us use our cellphones like breathing. To turn them off or leave them at home is like a personal failure. There's a challenge here which is to spread enthusiasm for asking questions about how much we rely on personal information and communication devices. Do I have to have my phone with me all the time? Should I check my messages every few minutes? We are not talking about concentration levels and mental health in a balanced life, we are talking about staying safe in a world where our moves are under surveillance and possibly measured.

We don't want to be a walking demographic - how do we bust out of this positioning?

posted at: 15:24   1 Comments Links to this post


At 27 March 2017 at 17:03 , Blogger Kelly Mindset said...

Actually I have the same questions and no effective answers. The question of privacy is so important but whp cares about it in the world where people boast with their devices (literally 'money'). By the way do you know that certain apps may have access to your contacts\calls while you even don't suspect suh a thing?
Thanks for the post and hope you will enjoy my blog Job Searching Mom about job search.


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Fiona Green
... is a feminist mother, Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Winnipeg, and loves to cycle.
Jaqueline McLeod Rogers
... is a mom of two young adult daughters. I received a Ph. D. for studying fiction by women, and have always worked full time as a professor with an interest in writing and women’s experiences.
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