An old saying states that freedom of speech does not include the right to yell fire in a crowded building.So, when does freedom of speech potentially violate ones legal rights to privacy? What specific violations can be considered invasion of privacy in digital media?
The freedom of speech is highly protected by the First Constitution Amendment. The first amendment forbids the Congress from making law reducing the freedom of press or speech. However, this does not imply that people can just anything at any time to anyone. Digital media is currently being used to update people status in different degrees. The use of digital media may not be as private as people may want it to be regarded since most information posted there end up being accesses by a huge number of people through friends or followers connection. Sometimes we share so much information that we end up exposing our private information to the public.
Sharing information regarding individual working area incidences or other personal life that conflict individual reports on the work place in the social media can be used against a person and initiate disciplinary action to an employee or even termination based on the seriousness of the case. Social media pages and walls are also being used to identify criminals based on what they been sharing with friends, especially videos, photos and their related explanations or descriptions. What may seem as a normal updates may result to inversion of one’s legal right to privacy. In such cases, individual freedom of speech expresses information which can be used against them, violating ones legal rights to privacy (Ess, 2009).
Although one can publically expose his or her private information in digital media knowingly or unknowingly, there are acts that can be regarded as violation of individual digital privacy. This would include accessing employees digital media accounts for instance emails, Facebook or twitter using their computers, by either snooping using software or by stealing password or by going through personal accounts from their unlocked computers or smartphones (Ess, 2009).Other methods can include stealing personal information by use of surveillance camera in the work place, or even spying from behind. All this would be considered as inversion of privacy in digital media.
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