Facebook Frenemy

Note re: my recent anti-Facebook rant. Maybe the people at the FTC read all of the same Sci-Fi Lit.

In the news today—On the verge of going public to investors in an IPO, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg concedes “a bunch of mistakes,” but no wrongdoing in a case brought by The Federal Trade Commission, according to news reports. Facebook promises better privacy protections, many of which have been promised before . . . . . . The FTC, which is set to audit Facebook every other year, might just say it best:

  • In December 2009, Facebook changed its site so certain information that users may have designated as private — such as their Friends list — was made public. Facebook didn’t warn users.
  • Facebook claimed it certified the security of participating “Verified Apps.” It didn’t.
  • Facebook promised users that it would not share their personal information with advertisers. It did.
  • Facebook claimed that when users deactivated their accounts, their photos and videos would be inaccessible. But Facebook allowed access anyway.

Maybe the FTC settlement over these allegations and others, as well as the lure of the IPO $billions, will change Facebook’s m.o.. But, you know, when I’ve got a friend who constantly breaks promises, I usually do the logical thing. I defriend them.

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