Years ago a mentor in my business life told me, as I struggled with my first smart phone that in no time I’d be tweeting, text messaging and blogging. She was right!
Unfortunately, what she didn’t tell me was, that social media can take a photo and utilize it to present a picture that is not fact.
I’ve never been a fan of having my picture taken. However, last year I did allow a photo of myself to be taken at a business mixer. I had forgotten all about it.
Sometime after the business mixer I severed ties with the organization I was photographed with. I had met some good people in the organization but it wasn’t the right fit for me.
This morning I received an e-mail advertising the business mixer. In the photos on the invitation was my photo with the CEO of the organization I was formerly associated with!
After an e-mail, a call to a friend dealing with Internet security and a call to a social media expert I came to the realization—the rude awakening if you will, that your have few rights in a public venue as to whether your picture can me taken. Additionally, I posed for this picture. Finally, the question is, who took the picture? The person advertising the event, or the organization I posed with?
This was quite a learning experience for me. While I can’t change past events, I will take steps to prevent my likeness being used without my consent and in a manner which does not accurately reflect current facts in the future.
Please do not ask to take my picture. The answer will be a polite no. If you take a scan of the room or a group shot which I believe captures me in the background I will ask you nicely but firmly to remove that picture or video from your device.
Wow…who would have thought social media could be so interesting and educational.
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Rhonda A. Mannes,