Privacy is dead. But I am not sure it was ever alive to begin with. Before the ascent of social media, one could assume that anything you did was not only being watched by God (if you are a believer), but also by the nosy neighbor across the street, who may have even occasionally used binoculars to spy. (I never.)
Last year, actor Ben Affleck (whom I love) was featured on the PBS program, Finding Your Roots. He uncovered the not-so-pretty truth that he had ancestors who owned slaves. The real surprise, however, was his request that PBS omit this discovery from airing. His reason: he was embarrassed. The sentiment is appreciated, but Ben should not have hid this information. Slavery is a quintessential piece of American History and while it is uncomfortable to discuss, it must not be swept under the rug.
Months ago, Sony Pictures Entertainment was massively hacked. A plethora of private emails between executives were leaked to the public revealing their thoughts on popular A-listers and even President Obama. In one email, Chairperson Amy Pascal described actor Angelina Jolie, as a “minimally talented spoiled brat”. She resigned from her position a few weeks later. While I completely disagree with Ms. Pascal and her lack of professionalism, should she have been punished for expressing her “true” feelings?
Let’s hope that you never fall victim to the idle mind of a super hacker, but should it happen, here are 3 ways you can survive it, without being horribly embarrassed.
1. Tell anyone that you don’t like, that you don’t like them.
If your private messages or texts are leaked and it reveals that you don’t like whomever, well then, it should come as no surprise. The person could not like YOU any less.
2. Say it, Forget it. Write it, Regret it.
Study this, learn this, said my college professor. The class: Evidence Law 101
For professional use mainly, when you really cannot reveal the true nature of your feelings because after all, you still need to work in order to live and eat. I don’t promote deception, but you’ll be surprised at how phrases like “the terminator”, “magic mike” and “the eagle has landed” can simplify life. Perhaps Ms. Pascal should have learned this!
Remember, if there is nothing to hide, there is nothing to worry about. Hackers, be warned. (But don’t hack me, thanks!).