When Google launched Gmail, I received an invitation to a Beta account, early on. One thing that struck me was the inability to delete any emails that you received or sent.
All you could do was archive them. The Google premise being that everything can now be stored and it should be (with each email account having an ever increasing capacity). This, rightly, raised concerns from users both on a privacy platform and also a personal user platform … ‘why can’t I delete so and so’s email, if I want to?”.
Facebook, through the new @Facebook.com email platform, is now covering this ground again with its’ newly launched ‘Social Inbox’. The argument is that there is now, through this platform, an ability to retain all conversations had with each person indefinitely. So that box of letters your mother kept, of old, is replicated online. Except that we have lost a generation of online communication via texts, emails, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Friends Reunited …. already.
And the central issue of personal privacy is skipped around.