Privacy, Copyright, and Accessibility

Private Eyes…They’re Watching YOU!
By Stephen Hudak

I have long lived under the assumption that nothing I put on the internet is private. This seems like a dim proclamation, but it might just keep me safe. I was not born under the technological moon of the past twenty years, Facebook, Twitter, Snap Chat, and other attention and time-stealing methods.

Paris Hilton became famous for being famous when her sex-tape was released. Pamela Anderson’s Baywatch career did not suffer upon the release of her similar tape. If these episodes were really stolen and not intended for other than private use, then it should be a lesson to everyone that your web-words and actions may one day be exposed, if you’ll forgive the pun. Sexting, selfies with drunken friends each with a beer bottle or whine glass may, one, day, stall the careers of people searching for public service jobs in government, leadership roles at Fortune 500 companies, and even getting into your desired college.

In an NBC article (1), Bob Sullivan wrote: “The Net was born as an open research tool, and thus was never designed to allow privacy or security. But at the same time, the Net seems to offer perfect anonymity, and most users behave as if they cannot be seen. Who hasn’t said or done something online which we wouldn’t do in the real world?” Sullivan goes on to quote Beth Givens: “A lot of people think about privacy but don’t really care until something happens to them personally,” said Beth Givens, director of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse. “It’s like freedom. You don’t appreciate it until it’s gone. If you are a victim of identity theft, you experience a change of world view, you realize how little control you have over your world.” A little common sense applied like life insurance might just save your reputation when you need it.

Technology works at the speed of light; Congress works at the speed of snails – or so it seems. Technology has made our lives so much easier. I can conveniently and quickly order a book from Amazon. I can see what my family and friends in other states and countries are up to with Facebook. We give up much personal information for this accessibility. Guard your identity, keep yourself and your family safe.

Now, I must go. It seems I can find out what my Game of Thrones Kingdom looks like. I don’t imagine I will have to give up too much for this much-needed knowledge!  After that I must check into how that Nigerian Prince I gave my bank account information to is doing with his deposit of 1.5 million dollars.  It’s only been two months.  I’m sure Nigerian Princes must be awfully busy.

Copyright laws in training are tricky.  I’ve been in many classes where the instructor was playing music that I don’t imagine they’ve received permission from Taylor Swift or Jay Z to use their music. To simplify this for a simple trainer such as myself,  (2) Ruth Soetendorp and Bartolomeo Meletti note:

“the exception only applies under the following conditions:
1) The purpose of the use is non-commercial
2) Where practical, there should be sufficient acknowledgement of authorship of the work
3) The use of the material is fair”

As I was told long ago, “if the thought’s not mine, I’d better giver credit where credit is due” (10th grade English teacher, Mr. Mills).

Accessibility in eLearning

Colin Horton is a man you have probably never heard of.  Colin Horton is my new hero.  He and I are fellow members of a Facebook comic book group.  I first came across Colin in a post where he shared his Batman sketch (shown below).  I at first thought he was a pretty young person.  I read some other posts that ranged from mean to very mean.  I checked out his page and found out he is about twenty and is living with Cerebral Palsy.  I went to his YouTube channel and was greatly amazed and inspired at this fine, young man.

Colin Horton – My Story Video

Colin Horton Batman-2017-09-06.png

Colin is an example of someone with what society calls a disability that is living a great life according to his wishes and abilities.  When considering designing online learning for people with “different needs” I must consider Colin, the elderly that are not great with technology, sight and hearing-diminished people, and others.

I starting training students over twenty years ago.  Technology was fairly new and was often, completely, new to them.  I had one gentleman call me over in class stating that his mouse wouldn’t work.  It’s happened before, I went to check it out.  He had worked his mouse to the right-edge of his mouse pad and thought he could go no further – that he was bounded by the mouse pad.  This stuck with me since.  I try to have patience and understanding in my classes and need to bring this to online learning development and teaching.

I encourage you to take a few minutes and watch Colin’s video.
Colin Horton talks about Cerebral Palsy-Video (see link above).

(1) Sullivan, Bob. Accessed September 5, 2017.

(2) Ruth Soetendorp and Bartolomeo Meletti September 14, 2017.

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