Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Yet another reason to avoid Facebook

I've written before about the security risks and dangers to privacy involved in using Facebook, which is essentially out to exploit its users for gain. It has no other reason for existence, except to make money off them. (If you think differently - if you think Mark Zuckerberg founded Facebook out of the goodness of his heart, as a public service, with no commercial motivation whatsoever - then there's this bridge in Brooklyn, NYC I'd like to sell you . . . )

Now comes the news that Facebook is at it again. PC Magazine reports:

Facebook today began rolling out advertisements to users’ news feeds, marking the paid posts as “Featured.”

The News Feed posts for which an advertiser has paid to have displayed will be labeled as “Featured,” instead of “Sponsored,” as was originally planned. Facebook said it is using the term “Featured” to differentiate the paid News Feed posts from the “Sponsored” ads on the sidebar that can be bought by any advertiser.

. . .

TechCrunch noted that the change from “Sponsored” to “Featured” may cause confusion and lead some to believe the paid posts are simply important stories since most users do not associate the word "featured" with ads.

While these stories are paid advertisements, they'll appear as the activity of a friend or as Pages people have Liked.

There's more at the link.

Facebook seems more and more to me like a digital version of the monster in that old SF movie 'The Blob': a great big oozing mass of greed, sprawling ever more widely across the Internet, seeking to absorb and digest everything about everyone - and make money on it! Not only are they targeting you with advertisements, but they're getting you to tell them how to do so every time you 'like' a company or product. Furthermore, they can't even be honest enough to tell you that something's an advertisement! Calling it a 'featured link' is nothing more than chicanery. What's that old Southern saying? "Don't piss on my leg, then tell me it's raining!"

No, thanks. Given the already serious security risks involved in Facebook's cavalier disregard for our privacy, and its disastrous security record, this is yet another reason why I'll stay as far away from them as possible, for as long as I can. I may eventually have no choice, for commercial reasons, but to get online there; but I'll avoid it as long as I can, and keep it to a minimum thereafter.



Anonymous said...

I avoid "facebook" because of the same reasons you've mentioned.

I have no need for the "World of merchandizing" to be constantly banging on my door.

And, I'm not an insecure little twerp who feels the need to "connect" with everyone on the planet for no other reason but to feel loved.

Anonymous said...

Facebook is the distributor and you are the product sold.

Oleg Volk said...

Browser plugins that eliminate most ads work well.

trailbee said...

I was on facebook for four months, then closed it down. Facebook would not let me delete my info. They said I might want to return someday. When Hell freezes over!