Because Everyone Needs Facebook

Facebook has rolled out several proposed updates to its privacy policy that ultimately gives Facebook even more control over its users information.  Coming on the heels of $20 million settlement by Facebook for using user’s information for inclusion in advertisements and “sponsored stories,” Facebook has responded by requiring users to give it permission to do just that:

You give us permission to your name, profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content (such as a brand you like) served or enhanced by us.

A prior clause that suggested any permission was “subject to the limits you place” has been removed.

This is why people don’t trust Facebook. The comments sections to these proposed changes are full of thousands of people demanding that Facebook leave their personal information alone, without any awareness that that ship has sailed.  I don’t begrudge Facebook’s efforts to find unique and data-centric methods to make money, but as someone who is already reluctant to share too much about myself on Facebook, I can’t be certain that these policies changes aren’t going to lead to Facebook having me “recommend” things to my friends I have no association with.

But no one is going to “quit” Facebook over these changes.  No one ever quits Facebook.  As a communications and connectivity platform, it is simply invaluable to users.  These changes will likely only augment Facebook’s ability to be deliver users content, but as someone who’s been with Facebook since early on, Facebook sure has transformed from this safe lil’club into a walled Wild West where everyone’s got their eye on everyone.


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