Facebook... great isn't it? Post a few photos of London burning, share some stories of looting in Birmingham, enjoy a bit of inciting 'friends' to torch Glasgow and, Bingo - 4 years free-board-and-lodging At Her Majesty's Pleasure !! Now, there are those that say anyone using Facebook deserves 4 years in the slammer on point of principal ... .. but let's investigate further while the jury deliberates.
Most people would probably agree that Messrs. Blackshaw and Sutcliffe-Keenan should be eating porridge for a fair stretch (although they'll doubtless be dubbed the 'Cheshire Two' before long) but why, you might ask, should we incarcerate folk for sharing their lives with the rest of the world ?? ... .. Well, Crimes-Against-Common-Sense would be a good place to start.
I talk, of course, of privacy - or, more to the point, the loss of it... we allow our children to spend their formative years sharing every last detail of their lives with 'friends' from Baghdad to Bognor Regis - half of whom could be sex offenders for all we know - and, when they grow-up, they spend the rest of their lives trying to erase these adolescent embarrassments from that indelible record otherwise known as the internet ... .. particularly ahead of job interviews - please note .... .. forget verbal diarrhoea, this is digital diarrhoea. Who needs Big Brother when we're all doing such a good job for 'him' ?! This perspective is perhaps odd, but is viewed through the prism of the privacy rights that I routinely protect for others on-line : so, whether it's protecting clients' children from the chasing paparazzi or removing invasive photos of their homes from Google Earth to avoid the rat-pack in the first place (and the risk of robbery or kidnap), my colleagues and I get to see the sharp end of privacy and the fact that, once lost, it's never fully recovered - I say "lost" but, in fact, the analogy is more akin to people giving their privacy away on street corners to anyone who passes-by ... .. much like the expression "Silence Is Golden", you can't measure silence but you know the value of it when it's gone.
And so, in an age of Big Brother - the unreality television show as opposed to The Nanny State - and in these times where people tweet everything from what they've had for breakfast, through to the meeting-point for the next riot in Latchford (would that be outside the Chippie ?!), I suppose it shouldn't come as any surprise that the Culture-of-Twitbook is omnipresent... as an unusually (for me) doleful word-of-warning, however, at least to parents, do try and administer regular doses of i-Modium along with their i-Tunes to preserve your children's safety and future dignity.
Come-to-think-of-it, wearing stripy pyjamas and eating Quaker oats all day - whilst enjoying satellite telly privileges and 'en-suite' bathroom facilities - isn't such a bad lot after all ... .. maybe I'll see you Down-The-Chippie !!
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