New technology is a b$#@!

Our social and mobile world have changed the game and if we don’t pay attention to our behavior, it will bite us. Just this week we had multiple reminders of what our ‘switched on’ world means.

New technology can be a b$#@! for those who aren’t thinking things through.

Not enough work?

Just yesterday, Enrique Medrano, 53, an employee of Graffiti Protective Coatings, Inc. was fired after he applied over 100 graffiti tags across Burbank, California and then submitted invoices for removing them. Seems work wasn’t steady enough and he had to create more.

But how was he caught? That’s the best part. His (former) company has an iPhone app that is used to streamline workflow. Police department Analytics discovered a surge in graffiti and that same app allowed for tracking his whereabouts at work. They caught him in the act.

Executive oops

The night of the U.S. Election, many things were put up on Facebook and other sites by people who weren’t happy about the result. One in particular was a comment someone made to a post of a quote from Obama that we are “an American family”. They comment said in reply, “Um, they are a KENYAN Family – wish they would go BACK.”

That isn’t nearly the worst that was put up, but this one caught people’s attention.

Seems he didn’t realize his own company name, fancy degree and status as an executive could be discovered with a single click of his name. Tweets were posted, phone calls made and a screen shot was sent to his CEO. Oops.

He blamed it on being new to social media. What?? He’s a marketing exec. He’ll find out this week if he still has a job.

General Malarkey

The story has finally emerged that CIA Director/Iraq/Afghanistan hero General David Petraeus resigned after his biographer/running partner/girlfriend, Paula Broadwell, also married, emailed threats to other woman in the Director’s life. The FBI was brought in, their relationship became evident, and now a man talked about as a future presidential candidate is done. A 40-year career over in days.

Email? Really? He was CIA Director and knew his life was under the microscope.

Assume transparency

These stories from just the past few days illustrate that the definition of the public square has changed. We’re no longer living in a world that offers us anonymity in our words or movement. Regardless of how you feel about personal rights, the only way to avoid putting data into the world, good or bad, is to live a traceless existence. Today, that would involve eschewing cell phones, social media and email. Perhaps you could live in a cabin somewhere high on a mountain. It might be lonely.

The alternative is to live assuming a degree of transparency that keeps you from these and other problems. Perhaps we really are defined by the things we do when (we think) no one is looking, ironically, that was one of Petraeus’ favorite reminders to his troops.

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Categories: Mobility, Social / Collaboration

Author:Jeanne Roué-Taylor

I'm fascinated by disruptive technology and its impact on our world. I manage sales operations for an excellent startup with a unique team of highly experienced data scientists.

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