“The Future of Reputation” a book report by Bobby Gordon

         The internet today is widely known as the new frontier. It is a place where anybody can connect to the world without leaving their homes. It is mostly considered an amazing thing. The internet provides unimaginable personal communication. Unfortunately, the World Wide Web is not always the safest place and as the world relies more and more on it, the internet becomes more and more dangerous. The main reason it is so dangerous is because nothing on the internet is private. The book The Future of Reputation: Gossip, Rumor, and Privacy on the Internet” by Daniel Solove is a book that is full with examples of gossip, rumors, and ramifications that the internet is not as private as you think.

The introduction is Solove telling us why he wrote this book. In 2005, Solove started up a blog. He said “I found blogging to be enthralling and invigorating. I was fascinated by the thrill of expressing my thoughts to a broad audience yet acutely aware of how people could be hurt by gossip and rumors spreading over the Internet.” In his blog he experienced people twisting he’s words and how he was being a victim of gossip that wasn’t true. Through this blog, he decided to write this book to acknowledge readers of this books the true dangers of the internet.

It starts on a train in South Korea when a dog decides to do his business on board.  The owner of the dog decides to do nothing about it and declares that it isn’t her fault therefore she should not have to clean it up.  Another passenger decides to take a picture of this incident and post it on a popular Korean blog.  Right there and then, that women’s life was ruined.  People began to notice that women’s face and started making fun of her.  It came to the United States when a blogger by the name of Don Park put this story on his popular blog.  Solove used this as a crucial example on how the internet is used for bad.  Yes, it was bad behavior to not pick up your dog’s business on the train, but it wasn’t a deed that needed to ruin a women’s life.

This book really tries to get us to know that absolutely nothing is private when it comes to the internet. With social media sites and blog posts, personal information is being posted to the web at an astonishing rate. Over 55% of teens say that they have online profiles.  Solove has a few examples in his book that has kids being punished, fired from jobs, and suspended from schools from information on the kid’s profiles online.  Bloggers who remain anonymous are often times uncovered.  Solove gave an example of a popular blogger who posted about a bad work experience.  The blog was founded by a supervisor who sent it to the bloggers boss and she was later fired.

The Future of Reputation: Gossip, Rumor, and Privacy on the Internet” is an informative book that leads back to one thing; reputation. To sum it up, this book really has great questions associated to our future and how our reputation can be affected through the internet.  From talking about free speech on the internet to having privacy on the web, this book hits all the right points about the problems on the internet.  Personally, I really enjoyed this book cover to cover and found it to be very insightful through numerous examples that were given by Solove.

This book is a must-read for anyone with the power to obtain the internet.  In a world where 40% of people use the internet, this book can really help someone out.  I especially recommend this book to people who are between the ages of 16 and 24.  These are the ages where social media is most popular.  Posting something bad can really damage your reputation that could greatly affect their future.  Solove hits all the points on how to not be careless on the internet in his novel.  “The Future of Reputation: Gossip, Rumor, and Privacy on the Internet” is a great read on a situation that is highly relevant and crucial in the world today.


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