With GDPR now a reality, being carpet-bombed by virtually everyone and everything who’s been tracking your online forays has likely caused one of two things to happen:

  • You’ve become numb to the prospect of actually paying attention anymore, or
  • You’ve become more curious as to what Big Tech is actually doing with your data.

For all their talk of openness and becoming more user friendly, the major social platforms still haven’t really done anyone any favors but themselves.

That’s the mantra: Say no to Default.

It’s really quite simple if you know where to look, and here’s investigative reporter Jeff Rossen of the Today show to provide a demonstration:

Controlling your data on Twitter means making selections in two sections:

Instagram has a Privacy Settings & Information page that enables you to determine how private you want your account to be.

LinkedIn, of all platforms, has the most convoluted privacy setting system. That’s beyond ironic, as it’s the go-to site for users looking to discretely change jobs.

Frankly, because of its appeal to professionals, LinkedIn has far and away the most desirable user base of all the major platforms. Perhaps the assumption is they take a more pedantic interest in their personal options.

As such, it’s preferable to have a step-by-step guide to efficiently navigate all settings.

We’re here to serve.

Now, let’s say you’d like to virtually eliminate all ads trying to invade your viewing time. Here are two resources that allow you to demur:

  • The National Advertising Initiative‘s Consumer Opt-Out program, where you’ll see a list of cookies you’ve accumulated and then be able to make your choices, and
  • The Digital Advertising Alliance‘s Consumer Choice Tool, which essentially performs the same service.

The major social media platforms all claim they’re now committed to playing nice, but the saying to thine own self be true has lasted centuries for a reason.

Protecting yourself in cyberspace — as a user and/or a publisher — is one of them.

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