Do you use Gmail, Google’s webmail service? If so you might have been rather upset a few weeks ago when something showed up in your inbox. Some people apparently got an invitation to try something called Buzz. Sounds innocent enough but if you clicked on it you were told that you were “following” a number of people and that a number of people were “following” you. Spam? No. Just another service from Google, albeit one you probably didn’t ask for.
How does it work? Simple. Google has gone through your email inbox and decided that some of those with whom you correspond are followees. Only problem is they didn’t actually ask you whether you wanted them to do this.
A few years ago you would have been at least asked whether you wanted your privacy invaded. Nowadays people just assume you won’t mind. This might seem like a storm in a teacup but think about it. Anyone that you are deemed to be “following” is now publicly available on your Google profile to anyone who takes a look. You can (eventually) remove this feature but why should you if you didn’t ask for it in the first place? In Cyberspace everyone can hear you screeeeeeam!