For this assignment I was assigned to a blog titled TechIntersect by Bill Genereux. Mr. Genereux is an assistant professor at Kansas State University at Salina specializing in digital media and web development. His post on March 18th is titled "Turn Obstacles into Inspiration". In it he shares with viewers a video (posted below) by a company called BigThink. The video is about an artist named Chuck Close that has a disability known as face blindness. This impaired him to recognize faces in the three dimensional form. Instead of suffering with his disability he used it to create beautiful portraits and share with the world what he saw through his eyes. Mr. Genereux posted this quote from Napoleon Hill "Every adversity contains within it the seed of an equal or greater benefit." What an excellent way to look at the world. This is a message we should be instilling in our students. We need to teach our students how to turn the qualities that make them different into the qualities that make them successful.
The second post that I read by Mr. Genereux is titled Risks of Hidden Metadata. Mr. Genereux posted a news clip by NBC News which discusses geotagging photos with smartphones. The story is meant to warn and scare parents about the unknown capabilities of their phones. It shows a reporter taking pictures of her daughter with an iPhone. Then it illustrates how a stalker could look these photos up online and view exactly where the picture was taken and what locations the child is frequently located at. When you listen to the news clip you can't helped but be concerned with the possibilities it is describing. However, I completely agree with Mr. Genereux's point of view. In his post he describes how there have always been ways to look up the locations of children, whether it be phone-books, newspapers, or school listings. He states, "If someone wanted to find and hurt specific kids before we ever had computers, they were able to do it. But because this technology is powerful, new, and we don’t fully understand it, it gives us the heebie jeebies."
I have a lot of personal experience with smartphones from working with AT&T and I'll be the first to say that people frequently purchase and play with technology they don't understand. However, I don't think that geotagging is a pedophiles new best friend. A predator would have to choose a specific child from thousands available out of the crowd. And let's be honest, if a predator was set on stalking a specific child, it could be done with or without geotagged photos. Like Bill Genereux pointed out, it is certainly something to be aware of, but possibly not as concerning as some media leads us to believe. It's a better idea to monitor our child's behavior and pay close attention to their activities online.