Saturday, January 06, 2007

It's About Time...

That I got a digital camera! To be honest, I'm still not quite sure about putting pictures of myself on the Internet, but I guess just this one can't do too much harm (and I'm sure you were all getting tired of the cap+eyes). So here I am! On a similar note: you blogging veterans out there, please let me know if I post something that you think is just a little too personal and could endanger my privacy. I really don't know the ropes of the blogosphere very well and I've seen one too many Dateline "To Catch a Predator" specials. (Not saying that any of y'all are axe murderers or anything, but you can never be too careful... ;) Tips would be nice...and yes, before you say it, I know putting my picture up is probably the first think NOT to do...but I had to keep up with Grace.

Update 1/8/07: The picture is gone. Blogging paranoia got the best of me. If you saw it, give yourself a pat on the back.


Amanda said...

So that's the face that goes with those eyes... :)

Digital cameras ARE nice indeed. Too bad I can't find mine! I did however just get a new phone with a camera...that's as good as it gets right now.

jerubaal said...

Security is relative, Jay. It all depends on how paranoid you are, and whether you have psychopathic stalkers.

All mine are dead, but I still wouldn't post an address or phone number, and I'm reluctant to give away a town. But since I tore down all my webpages and therefore all pics of me, I freely share my town: I live in San Diego.

I can share that because I live in a large town, and the odds of finding me even IF you have my picture are zero. Even if I shared my university (SDSU), you still couldn't find me - too many students, too large a campus.

However, San Diego, like all cities, has boroughs. For example, Little Italy in San Diego (Italy's version of China Town). I would not give that away - knowing that gives you a 100% chance of finding me eventually if you have my photo as well.

Of course, since the only enemies I tend to make online are liberals, there's nothing really for me to be afraid of in giving out my home address AND photos. Liberals are puny and I'm certain would hit like girls, if they weren't cowards.

I've heard recommendations that you shouldn't give away your state either, but I think this is paranoid unless you are a professional. If you are, cyberstalkers can do all sorts of intel gathering on you to try to screw up your life, since alot of information on professionals is made public, and they are easy to trigger an investigation on.

I go to a very small church, and I let everyone know what that church is. Combined with my name, which I give away here, you can easily hunt me down, even without a photo. However, you would have to get through at least one Navy Seal and a bunch of other military - some of them probably armed - to try to hurt me there, and that's if you weren't a weak leftist coward.

Security is a totality of the circumstances test. The factors are:

1) Odds that you can be definitely identified AND odds that you can be definitely located. (Lots of one but none of the other is still almost complete security).

2) Odds that anyone would want to hurt you. (You're young and good-looking, so the odds are higher).

3) The objective risk from the perp's perspective of trying to track you down and hurt you. (You're young and naive, objectively speaking: you make a perfect target. Compare to me - I'm 26 and probably wiser, much more likely to be armed and carrying, and odds are I'm much stronger. The risk is greater for a perp trying to track me down and hurt me.)

4) Everything Else. Do you have a wife or children to protect? Do you live alone in the woods, or next door to the police station? Do you have habits that put you in vulnerable positions near strangers on a regular basis? (This is a huge one for teenagers and the very early twenties crowd).

Jay said...

Wow...that's a pretty complete list. I figured that a lot of my early posts, in which I state my college (which only has 10,000 students), my town, and the nature of my dorm (not the name, but enough that it could be implied) were very naive and they will soon be edited.

My original e-mail address contained my real name, so who knows who has that? But since my blog seems to be getting more and more visitors everyday I need to be more careful. One would hope that the people in this nice little Christian nook of the blogosphere aren't too bad, and being on a college campus definitely makes you feel safer, but it's always good to make sure just in case.

By the way, did you just call me good-looking ;)

Joe said...

Nice pic Jay.

Oh the joys of blogging paranoia! I wasn't too bothered about showing my face until I installed Google Analytics and discovered a couple of visitors were geographically very close to home.

If a less than sympathetic visitor recognizes you from your blog photo, he/she will strongly tempted to leave a mocking comment (ask yourself – have you ever had to delete a nuisance comment?). Mind you, given the overall theme of you blog I don’t think you will get many visits from disinterested gossipers. Plus, being more open to a limited audience (the odds are your site will only be found by sympathetic Christians) is also very therapeutic.

Now if you added the (correctly spelled) words “bwriterny speerz upscurt fhoto” to your blog, you would get loads of sarcastic college kids passing by. My blog title has confused a few people from China searching for the music/lyrics to a rather lovely hymn.

Pomoprophet said...

Its sad that we have to be careful isnt it? Gone are the days where we could just share our opinions and struggles without fear of retaliation.

Thats why I created this blog :) So I could not share my name or much about me that acould be identified. This leaves me more free to deal with personal issues. I do have a personal blog besides this one. And i just recently took down my face pictures and took away some identifying information (I went to a small college and seminary is always a small community). And I made my myspace viewable by friends only.

I hate doing that because I think i'm a pretty neat guy and dont mind if normal people find me and say hello, actually some of my best friends I met in an online support group for exgays. But better safe than sorry. Especially since I work with youth and my struggle is not public knowledge!

Best bet is trying to live our lives above reproach and with integrity so that if someone ever does track us down or out us then we dont have much to hide. And if anyone did try to stalk me to mess with me, i'm fairly confident I could kick their butt. :)

Jay said...

Joe: My StatCounter has been showing people safely out of my state (and several from Taiwan, for some reason), so I think I'm find. That Britney Spears thing would surely give me a few more hits, though? You actually have to put up with hearing about her in the UK, too? I'm sorry. She's a worse representation of America than our current Congress, and that's saying something!

Pomoprophet: Very nice observation. I agree, and give me some time and your blog will be linked to mine in no time!

Jay said...

correction: I'm "fine" not "find" :) A person can't be a transitive verb anyway, so I hope you knew what I meant. ;)

jerubaal said...


You're probably okay. Ten thousand people all in one place, all on different schedules, makes your university hard to track you down. The english department, however, is probably one very small area.

But you're not really in an area of the web where people would want to hurt you. Besides, you live in the dorms, which are pretty secure locations and are very near the only place you've identified yourself as frequenting, so all things considered, you're pretty secure, though not as much as someone who has posted a location and name without a photo, or a photo and name without a location. Those guys as are practically invisible if they aren't running their own web server in their apartment (WHOIS lookup would give away all their info pretty quickly).

Anonymous said...

Shame the photo's gone. It was a good picture =)

Brady said...

Oh no, I can't believe I missed it. Oh well :-(

Jessica said...

Hi Jay...

You don't know me, but I'm your visitor from Taiwan. I came across your blog through Willful Grace's blog. I don't know her either, but she's in the blog circles of some of the denomination I grew up in. Still can't remember exactly how I stumbled upon her blog, though.

But, I thought just for the sake of assuaging your blog paranoia, I'd identify myself. I stuck around to read your blog because you're a good writer, and because the topics you're addressing are really interesting to me (knowing several people who struggle with SSA and are on various sides of the issue).

Keep up the good work...don't worry about me. I'm normal (mostly), and definitely not malevolent in any way!

Jay said...

Nice to meet you Jessica! I'm not worried a bit, and I'm very flattered that you called me a good writer. =) Thanks!

Don't worry. The paranoia is pretty much gone. Not many of the people in this corner of the Internet are malevolent (normal...well that's another story ;) I'm just a little worried about friends or family who don't know about me stumbling across it (don't know how they would, but I don't want to take my chances just yet).

Anyway, good to finally hear from you (now if I can just get those people from Australia to comment =)

grace said...

AWWWWW Man! I missed it as well! I've been so out of it lately. And "Hi" Jessica...I'm not insanely jealous that you've not commented on MY blog! haha! j/k

Can you email me the pic please, Jay???

love ya!