Snapping selfies at a bar, or at a ballgame when you told your boss you were sick? Those posts can be seen by everyone, like your boss and your mother. If only you had been thinking clearly and not posted these to Facebook!
Facebook is a great way to interact with friends and family online, but it's also one of the easiest ways to get embarrassing photos of yourself out into the digital unknown. You know you shouldn't be posting those racy or inappropriate photos online, but some people still can't seem to help themselves.
That's why Facebook is working on a digital assistant that can recognize when you're posting embarrassing or inappropriate content. Facebook's Artificial Intelligence Research Lab (FAIR) can already recognize your face and your friends' faces when you upload images, but that's just the beginning.
The next logical step is for FAIR to recognize sober you from drunk you, and be able to identify when you're writing inappropriate posts, to save your reputation. This sounds like a great idea, but there's another side to this coin.
Facebook being able to recognize when you're posting questionable content isn't the only thing coming out of FAIR. If it can recognize your content, it can also suggest hashtags to make your content more searchable.
It can also tailor ads to make them more clickable for you based on the content of your posts. Are your shoes old and ratty? Now, there's an ad for designer shoes on your news feed.
But the lead of the FAIR project, Yann LeCun, says that the goal of the project is to give you more control over your online identity, not less.
"Imagine that you had an intelligent digital assistant which would mediate your interaction with your friends," he says, "and also with content on Facebook."
LeCun is also hoping to create a way for Facebook to notify you when someone you don't know is posting photos of you online without tagging you. "You will have a single point of contact to mediate your interaction but also to protect your private information," he says.
I guess we'll just have to wait and see what Facebook will do next. What do you think? Let me know in the comments below.