Is the Internet the new Colosseum?

Jeffrey Zaslow of the Wall Street Journal writes on just how pervasive the ‘net has become especially when it involves our personal lives. He also asks if the accessibility of a worldwide forum has made us more vicious in humiliating others thanks to how anonymous it can also make us, turning embarrassing photos into a sort of “blood sport”. Has it?

There’s a reason why people say that when it appears on the internet, it’s forever, especially if it’s been preserved on someone’s hard drive or appears on something like the Internet Wayback Machine.

Phone cameras, blogs, Facebook, Myspace, Google, and a whole host of social tools have created a privacy nightmare. I would be pretty amazed, and depressed, at how many people would tell me how cavalier they were when it came to how much personal information they had posted on the ‘net. Today’s family picture can easily become tomorrow’s viral sensation with a few cosmetic changes.

And with more prospective employers looking at social networks to gauge potential employees, taking care in how you treat your life online is becoming increasingly important when you step away from the usual anonymity that the ‘net allows.

It’s certainly come a long way from having to use Notepad to hash out HTML thanks to easy-to-use tools provided by sites such as Facebook or Youtube allowing anyone to become their own star on the ‘net for better or worse. Yay! I’m famous!

Or is that infamous? That’s entirely up to you.