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Childhood Pictures On Facebook

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This topic contains 36 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by avatar anonymousse 5 months ago.

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  • #682419 Reply
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    PrivacyPlease

    A close older relative of mine (practically another parent) continually uploads baby and childhood photographs of me and the other children of my generation to Facebook, tagged and captioned, the whole works. I’m in my early 30s and find it invasive and inappropriate- even though the pictures are usually not in and of themselves embarrassing, I feel like childhood pictures are way too intimate for the broader audience (casual friends, acquaintances, colleagues, etc) most of us have on Facebook. My relative is well aware that I don’t like it as I have mentioned it before, and they have noticed (and remarked with annoyance to others) that I untagged each of these pictures ASAP, until I had to set my privacy settings to where I must now “ok” any posts before they appear on my timeline. Despite their being aware of my dislike, the images are still posted constantly. I don’t think my privacy settings prevent it from going on the newsfeeds of anyone I know before I untag it/remove it from my timeline (my privacy settings are as high as I know how to make them because of this), and it certainly remains visible to anyone who is a mutual friend of my relative’s or the other (now-adult!) children in the pictures. My discomfort does not prevent my relative from *constantly* posting a barrage of ‘nostalgic’ childhood pictures of me and my siblings and other (again, now well into adulthood!) relatives and family friends. I have spoken about this with the other ‘children’ in the pictures and all are annoyed, but none seem to be irritated and offended by it to the extent that they want to address it (relative is easily offended and nobody wants to start a row over something basically innocent but annoying). I live far away from this relative but am still close to them, and intend to address it kindly next time I see them. However, I am hoping to ask a neutral, anonymous audience 2 things:

    1) Am I overreacting? Generally it has been a minor annoyance (it has gone on for many years) but recently the constant posting of otherwise-innocuous childhood pictures (when my dislike of it is clear) has started to make me feel that I have no control over my own image. I mean, 1 or 2 every now and then would be fine, even cute. But this is *way* more than 1 or 2. I’m talking multiple times a month, in dumps of multiple photos at a time. Maybe it sounds odd, but, like… that’s ME! In ugly clothes, with a bad haircut! Just because I was not an adult doesn’t mean that I wasn’t an autonomous human with a right to bury all evidence of “the bowl cut”… or at least to hide it from Susan from Accounting! I feel like there is a time and place to display childhood photos, and that is in a private, personal setting like a home, not plastered all over Facebook for everyone and their mother (and colleagues! and that guy I dated briefly in college!) to see.

    2) Is it fair to ask my relative to refrain from posting *any* childhood picture that contains me, when those pictures often contain others? This ask would seriously limit the stock of photos they could post, and I know they post these photos because they treasure them. But this has been going on for many years and has been a minor annoyance, now building up to a bona fide irritation. Again, I’m quite close to this relative and they would be very hurt by being asked point blank to stop, but it’s getting to the point that it makes me increasingly uncomfortable every time I get *that* notification.

    So in short, who really “owns” childhood photos, particularly ones from 20+ years ago- the subjects (the grown children) or the photographers (the parents)?

    Thanks for your attention and any advice or remark as to whether this is a conversation worth having with my relative, or a complete non-issue, is welcome.

    #682436 Reply
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    TheHizzy

    I would view this as a non-issue really. You can keep untagging yourself in posts or whatever but honestly everyone has epic baby pics. I have many with a bowl cut and cat vests I don’t mind anyone seeing. But, if there were shirtless in the bathtub photos I’d probably protest those.

    Just keep having that conversation with the person posting in a respectful way. They may not realize it’s actually an issue as much as you feel it is. Sometimes people just don’t get it.

    Susan in Accounting has similar photos at home. Promise.

    #682438 Reply
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    Kate
    Keymaster

    Honestly? Get off of Facebook. Zuckerberg owns your images once they’re on there. What you mentioned is just one of many problems with that platform.

    If you won’t deactivate your account, then what happens if you just don’t approve any tag request from that relative? I would think that then none of those photos would go on your timeline, so co-workers won’t see them. Other family members might, but they know what you looked like as a kid.

    #682440 Reply
    redessa
    redessa
    Participant

    Whoever took the pictures owns them. Even though it’s your image, long as she’s not using them for commercial purposes, I don’t think you have any claim on the photos.

    What you can do is explain to grandma (I’m assuming) that in addition to family you have business associates on facebook and it’s quite unprofessional to have old childhood pictures popping up all the time and ask her not to tag you. You could also suggest she set up a private group for the family where she and others can share in reminiscing in the old photos & memories. That at least limits the scope of who sees these pics to mostly people who were there at the time anyway.

    Overall though, I think your annoyance has built up to a level that is out of proportion to the offence. If she’s posting this kind of stuff so often, I doubt anyone in your wider circle cares anymore. Surely Susan from accounting is not spending copious amounts of time analyzing the haircut you had at 5 yrs old. It’s the kind of thing I think most people scroll right past.

    #682441 Reply
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    Kate
    Keymaster

    Whoever took the picture *actually* owns it, but the internet says this:

    Under Facebook’s current terms (which can change at anytime), by posting your pictures and videos, you grant Facebook “a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any [IP] content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (“IP License”). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it. Beware of the words “transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license.” This means that Facebook can license your content to others for free without obtaining any other approval from you! You should be aware that once your photos or videos are shared on Facebook, it could be impossible to delete them from Facebook, even if you delete the content or cancel your account (the content still remains on Facebook servers and they can keep backups)! So, although you may be able to withdraw your consent to the use of photos on Facebook, you should also keep in mind that if you share your photos and videos with Facebook applications, those applications may have their own terms and conditions of how they use your creation! You should read the fine print to make sure you are not agreeing to something that you don’t want to have happen.

    #682442 Reply
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    Janelle

    This is why I don’t get why people are so social media obsessed. On any social media the only people on my lists are people I actually know in real life and with that are only family, childhood friends and seriously close friends. No work people, no friends of friends, no one I am dating. It just makes a mess. The only reason I even keep my FB is for family, to see the kids I don’t get to interact with daily, growing up.

    Also my privacy settings are so that unless I approve you as a friend you will see nothing more than a dime sized image of me and no photo will ever post with me tagged in it unless I approve it first.

    Fairly simple.

    Why do you need to be friends with Suzie from accounting anyway?

    #682443 Reply
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    Kate
    Keymaster

    That’s true too, when I was on FB, I wasn’t friends with ANY family members or current co-workers.

    #682444 Reply
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    TheHizzy

    I have a strict “No current co-worker” rule. It’s really been a good thing. I don’t worry about what’s posted then.

    #682446 Reply
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    dinoceros
    Member

    Everyone has a right to be upset about things, but yeah, I guess I don’t really see the outrage. As long as you are untagged, your only friends who can see them are people who know both of you. So that essentially gets dialed back to the same as someone showing hard copy photos to family members.

    Definitely let her know you don’t like them, but I think that some of this (your life being spread digitally further than you’d prefer) is sort of one of the tradeoffs of using social media. You may want to hide her feed so that you don’t have to stress about this so much.

    #682447 Reply
    Copa
    Copa
    Participant

    I think this is a non-issue, and not worth feeling upset about. You can remove the tag, or make sure your privacy settings are such that photos others upload of you are not visible to others. You can certainly tell her you’d prefer these photos not to be uploaded, but it’s easier to do the things that are within your control, like reining in your privacy settings.

    I like when people upload old pictures to Facebook every now and again. (Not necessarily pictures of ME, but in general, I think they’re amusing.) People who upload hundreds of photos of their babies worry me.

    #682448 Reply
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    PrivacyPlease

    Thanks all. To clarify- I am comfortable with my own usage of Facebook and am very careful to curate the image I present there, and have no other issues aside from the awkwardness of the baby pictures, so simply “getting off Facebook” is not really an option I’m willing to pursue. I have only those close co-workers with whom I am actually friends in real life; however, given my line of work I do use it for professional contacts, particularly in parts of the world where mobile platforms are often the best way of keeping in convenient touch. I wish I could agree with the poster Kate (and I do in principle, in a perfect world I wouldn’t need it), but Facebook is for me a sometimes-unwelcome necessity in that not only is it useful professionally, I also find it almost impossible to keep up-to-date with family and friends at home (I am an expat) without it. Plus, I enjoy it when it’s used reasonably. I don’t feel that I should have to undertake extra measures or deny myself normal use of a normal social platform to preserve a level of privacy I think most people are afforded (I do not know anyone else with this many baby pictures online and more or less public- if I allowed them on my timeline, you’d think I was still 8).

    I currently have it set to prevent anything from going on my timeline without my approval; however, the problem is that from what I’ve been told (and seen from a few very unwelcome “likes”) is that this does not prevent the baby pictures from going on my *newsfeed*, at least until I am able to manually untag them. This means I have to be extra-vigilant and causes me stress when travelling or in areas with little internet access (the breaking point for the high-privacy settings was when I went on a work trip and came back to find over 10 childhood pictures had been up on my page for a week).

    I think my problem is not so much that I am embarrassed, but mainly that it just feels invasive and like a violation of my right to some degree of privacy, particularly given that my relative is aware that I find it uncomfortable. So the issue is not necessarily one of logistics but of how/whether to address this with the relative that I feel is lightly treading on some boundaries.

    #682450 Reply
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    Kate
    Keymaster

    What if you make a second FB account for professional use, and friend all your professional contacts over there? Or just have a separate family one? The point being, I’m pretty sure you can’t stop this person from doing what she’s doing.

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