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MySpace To Sell User Data

CmdrTaco posted more than 4 years ago | from the what-you're-surprised dept.

Social Networks 199

OnlyJedi writes "Hot on the news of Netflix canceling its latest contest over privacy concerns, news has spread that MySpace is going in the opposite direction. Apparently, the one-time leading social network is now selling user data to third party collection firms. From the article, the data that InfoChimps has listed includes 'user playlists, mood updates, mobile updates, photos, vents, reviews, blog posts, names and zipcodes.' InfoChimps is a reseller that deals with individuals and groups, from academic researchers to marketers and industry analysts. So if you're worried about your data on MySpace being sold off to anybody with a few hundred dollars, now's the time to delete that little-used account."

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199 comments

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Slashdot to sell.. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495140)

Slashdot is going to have an auction for pictures of CmdrTaco's and kdawson's micropenises. The bidding starts at 10 cents.

Re:Slashdot to sell.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495198)

Boy, a penny per micron. Bargain of the century.

Re:Slashdot to sell.. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496240)

Are they circumcised or no? That makes all the difference to me; I prefer uncut ;-0

So you think its really that easy? (4, Insightful)

arcite (661011) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495170)

Just hit the 'delete' button and your data is safe? Too late, they got you.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495262)

Pffft, they can have it [myspace.com] . Nothing of value was lost [slashdot.org] .

Re:So you think its really that easy? (5, Informative)

dunezone (899268) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495326)

The only way I can think of removing your information is to edit your profile with random information that makes sense but is generic. Replace all critical information such as addresses or phone numbers with fake addresses. Remove all photos and just have a few generic stock photos. The idea is to make the account look legit but with no information that can be used against you.

This will correct the issue of current viewable information. Next you need to lock down your profile with as much security as possible, disable messages, turn on approvals for anything, lock it down like Fort Knox so it stays static as long as possible.

Now comes the part you have no control over. You need to let the account sit for months if not years. Over time they (Myspace or Facebook) will need to purge older backups and can only keep current relevant information. So now the older backups are over-written and being written into the system is your current BS profile, but this can take months to years to do and that depends on how much Myspace/Facebook or any social site is willing to retain.

Whatever you do, don't just delete the account or use their automated deletion system cause that's not really doing the job you want. That most likely puts it into a special repository for recoveries in case you want to come back.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (5, Insightful)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495390)

The only way I can think of removing your information is to edit your profile with random information that makes sense but is generic.

How about adding some details about the people running MySpace in your profile?

Re:So you think its really that easy? (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496538)

Well, quite. Any entity that shouldn't be sending me anything but insists on contact details anyway gets postmaster@foo.com, and the snail and phone details from whois foo.com

Re:So you think its really that easy? (2, Insightful)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495402)

Reasonable suggestions, unless they also are tracking changes to accounts. In that case, they keep all the values that have ever been used. For instance, "Hey user '1@m1337' has lived in Ohio, Florida and Tijuana". Time to check for drugs!

Re:So you think its really that easy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496508)

Reasonable suggestions, unless they also are tracking changes to accounts. In that case, they keep all the values that have ever been used. For instance, "Hey user '1@m1337' has lived in Ohio, Florida and Tijuana". Time to check for drugs!

Well, in that case you can change it occasionally to other fake but genuine-looking information. It's practically impossible for them, or an advertiser who bought the information to know which ones are correct and which aren't. People do actually move around, even IP tracking wouldn't work.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (1)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495584)

or you could not put real data in there to begin with?
My only MS account was a troll...

Re:So you think its really that easy? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495620)

The only way I can think of removing your information is to edit your profile with random information that makes sense but is generic. Replace all critical information such as addresses or phone numbers with fake addresses. Remove all photos and just have a few generic stock photos. The idea is to make the account look legit but with no information that can be used against you. This will correct the issue of current viewable information. Next you need to lock down your profile with as much security as possible, disable messages, turn on approvals for anything, lock it down like Fort Knox so it stays static as long as possible. Now comes the part you have no control over. You need to let the account sit for months if not years. Over time they (Myspace or Facebook) will need to purge older backups and can only keep current relevant information. So now the older backups are over-written and being written into the system is your current BS profile, but this can take months to years to do and that depends on how much Myspace/Facebook or any social site is willing to retain. Whatever you do, don't just delete the account or use their automated deletion system cause that's not really doing the job you want. That most likely puts it into a special repository for recoveries in case you want to come back.

The only way I can think of removing your information is to edit your profile with random information that makes sense but is generic. Replace all critical information such as addresses or phone numbers with fake addresses. Remove all photos and just have a few generic stock photos. The idea is to make the account look legit but with no information that can be used against you. This will correct the issue of current viewable information. Next you need to lock down your profile with as much security as possible, disable messages, turn on approvals for anything, lock it down like Fort Knox so it stays static as long as possible. Now comes the part you have no control over. You need to let the account sit for months if not years. Over time they (Myspace or Facebook) will need to purge older backups and can only keep current relevant information. So now the older backups are over-written and being written into the system is your current BS profile, but this can take months to years to do and that depends on how much Myspace/Facebook or any social site is willing to retain. Whatever you do, don't just delete the account or use their automated deletion system cause that's not really doing the job you want. That most likely puts it into a special repository for recoveries in case you want to come back.

A good idea, but it may not be necessary to wait. Just change the user info and cancel the account. A company selling a list of user data, wont try to figure out which is the accurate information, they will just use the most recent. Based on some direct mail marketing experience years ago, a list a year old is expected to have incorrect addresses for approximately 10% to 20%.. Many companies wont buy a list older than 90 or 180 days.

ARE YOU SURE? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495864)

Now comes the part you have no control over. You need to let the account sit for months if not years. Over time they (Myspace or Facebook) will need to purge older backups and can only keep current relevant information. So now the older backups are over-written and being written into the system is your current BS profile, but this can take months to years to do and that depends on how much Myspace/Facebook or any social site is willing to retain.

Are you sure that's how it works?

I don't think you comprehend how goddamn cheap storage is these days, and how minimal the amount of data per user actually is.

Even if we assume they have 1 billion users, with each having roughly 100 MB of info/wall posts/photos/etc. (in reality, most users probably have a small fraction of that, less than 1 MB), that still comes to only 1x10^17 bytes of data. That's not even an exabyte of data. It's only about 91,000 TB, and that's without using any sort of compression.

Modern tape drives from IBM can store up to 1 TB of data uncompressed. Using a good algorithm, one can typically achieve 80% (and usually better) compression ratios for textual data. Even assuming we can only achieve a conservative 75% compression ratio, that still drops the storage requirements by a quarter or so.

They could probably store that data for less than $10 million, even if they weren't getting bulk discounts on their hardware and storage media. That's not a lot of money in the whole scheme of things. They could quite easily and comparatively cheaply store everything they know about every user, including a full history.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (4, Informative)

B'Trey (111263) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495922)

There is nothing you can do to ensure that data you've already entered is gone. Even if you delete photos and change the info, there's no guarantee that the previous info is not stored. That being said, I deleted my account when I saw this earlier this morning on another site. When they asked me why I was deleting the account, I checked "Privacy concerns." In the comments section, I pasted a quote from the article noting what they were selling and followed it up with a single word: Bye. If enough people do this, Facebook will get the message that users are unhappy with this decision, even if deleting the account doesn't protect already-entered data.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496220)

For the love of FSM, MOD PARENT UP!
 
Filter error: Don't use so many caps. It's like YELLING.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (2, Informative)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496348)

You mean MySpace, right? I mean, Facebook is just about as trustworthy as MySpace or a 5-year-old child at keeping your "secret" data "secret", but at least get your evil super-villain correct.

Also, if you just delete the account, they have your most recent information available for sale. Be sure to alter the information and let the new information age a bit before deleting it.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (2, Funny)

ircmaxell (1117387) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496480)

Well, unless I misunderstood their TOS, when you signed up, you granted MySPACE the right to do what it pleases with your data. By deleting your account, aren't you thereby revoking that right from MySPACE? So if you delete it today, and they sell it tomorrow, aren't they violating your rights (and hence are liable for the sale)... Or do I not understand this correctly?

Re:So you think its really that easy? (1)

cellurl (906920) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496030)

I drive a bunch of kids to school.
They all have two accounts, one real and one fake.
-learn from them...


Speed baby [wikispeedia.org]

Re:So you think its really that easy? (1)

Green Light (32766) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496492)

How does that help them if they have a "fake" account? If they still have a "real" account, then MS has their "real" data.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (3, Interesting)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496066)

Of course if you did this in the first place as I did, you have little to be concerned with, and with a photo that is 10 years old, good luck using that to identify me especially seeing how when i registered i never used my name or any valid information other than a real email address and my city complete with incorrect zip code. I did the same 3 years ago when I signed up for Facebook. Once I started hear how Facebook handles this data, I am glad I chose to do it.

Which begs another question which should probably be under Ask Slashdot. How many users here create accounts using real information, aside from sites like PayPal or where it would be required for your activities. I'm talking like email accounts, MySpace, Facebook, or even /. I'd be interested to know if I'm the only one using false information in 98% of my online endeavors.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (3, Insightful)

marcansoft (727665) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496464)

I use my real name most of the time (except for throwaway accounts), because quite frankly I don't like to appear as "hiding" behind an online nickname, and names aren't exactly sensitive information. Usually the only time I'm asked my address is when I want to buy something; 99% of the other cases it's scammy/spammy/throwaway sites that I'm typing junk info into anyway. As for birth date, I tend to make that up, but not always. I'm quite a bit less paranoid than most people I know though; e.g. if you want my address (feel free to send me cool stuff :P), all you have to do is perform a WHOIS lookup on my domain.

But really, it all boils down to not using public websites for private stuff. The only website that I use that can be considered to be a social networking site is Twitter, and I use it to engage in public conversation anyway. If I want to talk in private, I use e-mail or IRC, preferably on private servers. If I put something on-line, chances are I probably want you to be able to find it.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (4, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496154)

Better yet, poison the well. Change your account data to be complete garbage. It's going to skew their demographics and reduce the value of the data.

Releasing info on minors is probably prohibited (2, Interesting)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496170)

Releasing personally identifiable information (names or contact info for example) on minors is probably legally prohibited. They can probably only release aggregate non-identifiable information. Also minors can not legally enter into a contract (in the US) so terms of use agreements that allow the release of personally identifiable information may not be valid. Perhaps an EFF lawyer can send a letter.

Re:So you think its really that easy? (4, Insightful)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496248)

No. Removing your profile is really easy. Just edit it into a troll profile. Replace all images with the pain series, 50 hitlers / swastikas, etc. Edit all texts to the most offensive ones possible. And don’t forget to put a “song” “owned” by the biggest douche out there on your site. Something by Warner Music or the like.

Will get you deleted in less than an hour. Guaranteed. ^^

But don’t forget to “unfriend” all your friends before you do so! ;)

Re:So you think its really that easy? (3, Interesting)

ZeroExistenZ (721849) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496422)

There are automated services for this: suicidemachine.org [suicidemachine.org]

Re:So you think its really that easy? (1)

Low Ranked Craig (1327799) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496552)

ALL of my personal info on Facebook is incorrect. What kind of fool would publish their birth date, full name and address?

Re:So you think its really that easy? (1)

shabtai87 (1715592) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495778)

But it's not too late to stop giving them any more data!

http://suicidemachine.org/ [suicidemachine.org]

What is myspace? (0, Troll)

mysurp (712588) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495172)

I know that it has been around for some time, but does anyone actually spend any time there? And better yet, does anyone actually save personal information they are afraid of there? Seems like this shouldn't be to big of a problem. My birthday, address and phone number are easy enough to find elsewhere. If somebody is paying myspace for that information, then good for them.

Re:What is myspace? (2, Insightful)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495470)

The problem is what information will you be afraid of 10 years from now? Think Michael Phelps and his bong hits. Granted he should have been afraid of those pics *now* but for most kids it won't matter to them until they need a job that does background checks.

Re:What is myspace? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496064)

Thats why the smart pot smoking college kids, like me, dont

A) Take pictures of myself doing bong hits

B) Dont use facebook or there ilk

C) DONT POST STUPID PICTURES ONLINE

Re:What is myspace? (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495604)

Specifically they're going to be tailoring ads specific towards you. They're going to know the music you wear, and the type of comments you post, that kind of stuff. They'll then be able to tell what ads you've rolled over for how long, suggesting what advertising might be working on you, and remove the ones that aren't. On top of that, they'll be using a GeoIP database to target your city.

Myspace has become Theirspace. Their advertising space.

Re:What is myspace? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495746)

Specifically they're going to be tailoring ads specific towards you. They're going to know the music you wear

I don't care if they know the music I wear. As long as they don't know the clothes I listen to, I'll be OK.

How Stupid do you have to be (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495176)

To let Rupert Murdoch own your personal information . . . geez!

Re:How Stupid do you have to be (1)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495852)

Actually, many people let 'Tom' own it. Then it was all sold to Rupert Turdoch.

To collection firms? (1)

rwade (131726) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495196)

"...the one-time leading social network is now selling user data to third party collection firms."

The term "third-party collection firm" generally leads one to think of a debt collector. There is no mention in the article of selling the data to such companies.

Typical Murdoch (2, Informative)

benjfowler (239527) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495212)

Since it's owned by News Corporation, it'd be fair to say that it draws from the Murdoch family's deep well of moral squalor. So selling user data to the highest bidder, in addition to attacking Murdoch's ideological enemies [wikipedia.org] , is being just true to form for these people.

I can't say I'm surprised.

Re:Typical Murdoch (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495870)

HA HA! </Nelson Munz>

Old Site (1)

Sagelinka (1427313) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495228)

"playlists, mood updates, mobile updates, photos, vents, reviews, blog posts, names and zipcodes" Now who here thinks this is wrong in some kind of way?? There is no real reason behind it other then myspace making some extra lunch money. I might end up deleting my myspace after I do some research into this. But why I never use myspace anyway. To many kids. Facebook is mature.

Re:Old Site (3, Insightful)

Huntr (951770) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495616)

When Facebook goes down, they'll do the same thing. Deleting your info doesn't help, either. As soon as you post it, they have it.

Deleting does no good (4, Insightful)

Jessta (666101) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495246)

I don't think deleting your Myspace account will do anything. They already have your data and you already agreed to allow them to redistribute it, just because you delete your account doesn't mean they have to delete your data. Facebook has the same agreement and will get to selling your data to the highest bidder sooner or later.

It's amazing that people will trade the labours of their mind for mere web hosting.

Re:Deleting does no good (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495408)

However; deleting your account will keep them from gathering any further data. Be sure to explain, in graphic detail in their "reason why" box why you are deleting your account.

If their account #s drop by a third, they should get the message, whether we already "Agreed" to let them sell this info or not.

Re:Deleting does no good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496484)

1/3 of their users are not IT geeks who will follow through in order to protect privacy. Your suggestion, especially since it's posted to slashdot, is about as effective as a suggestion to boycott and not pirate when the vast majority won't see your comment and if they did still won't listen. The vast majority of them might whine if they knew, and they likely won't find out about it, but will not give it up.

Re:Deleting does no good (3, Insightful)

Chees0rz (1194661) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495446)

It's amazing that people will trade the labours of their mind for mere web hosting.

It's amazing people consider facebook and myspace as "mere web hosting;" social networks are about connectedness. I am not defending them, but you're trivializing these communities and showing your ignorance.

Re:Deleting does no good (0)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495712)

Wouldn't it make more sense to develop a system where people could host their own information on their own servers (or their ISP) who they trust? It wouldn't be that difficult to design a set of protocols for social networking services running on many different web hosts to communicate and share information in a much more private manner, such that it can only be seen between friends. It would also help to spread out the load quite a bit, and by distributing the information, make it much harder to profit from selling the data. There's probably enough bandwidth and space in a single, $10, shared hosting plan support 100 facebook users. So for 10 cents a month, you could host your social network information with someone you trust, and not have to worry as much about them selling it all. And at least we wouldn't have to worry about somebody owning all of the data. Seems like a big problem to tackle, getting everyone to sign on, but with all the problems with privacy on MySpace and Facebook, I think that a lot of people are just waiting for a better solution.

Re:Deleting does no good (1)

Jessta (666101) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495888)

Yep, this idea has been had many times. FOAF is the most popular.

But freedom is a hard sell.The reason myspace and facebook etc. get such large users bases is specifically related to the walled garden way they operate. If I get a myspace account then if it to be useful I have to make all my friends get myspace accounts too. If they could follow what I was doing without getting such an account then they probably wouldn't bother.

Re:Deleting does no good (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496052)

My point is, is that it is getting easier to sell with each passing privacy problem that people encounter the the centralized social networks. Many people have accounts on many social networks anyway (twitter, facebook, myspace). It would only be necessary that you get people to sign up on the new distributed network, and once they see the advantages, get them to use it as their primary service. You'd have to have some centralized data for the people who just weren't interested in holding their own data. But for those who were interested in holding their own data, it would be a big plus.

Re:Deleting does no good (4, Insightful)

idontgno (624372) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495754)

Social networks are about pseudo-connectedness. Yes, they facilitate (i.e., make easier) real existing connections of actual social value, but they also enable (i.e., make possible) false connections with no actual underlying social significance. Witness Facebookers who have literally 4-5 digit numbers of "friends", or who "friend" commercial and marketing entities, or who have dozens of friends they've never met IRL and never will.

Let's face it, RL is all that actually matters.

That said, it's almost impossible to trivialize those "communities" beyond their inherent triviality. Furthermore, baseless and ad-hominem accusations of ignorance is not merely defense, but fanboi-level defense, and is probably one of the few things which can make the shallow inanity of these social networks glaringly obvious.

Seriously... if you want connectedness and socialization, get out of Mom's basement. Or write a letter. You know, pen on paper? Or get together with real human beings.

Re:Deleting does no good (2, Informative)

Blue Stone (582566) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495484)

>They already have your data and you already agreed to allow them to redistribute it, just because you delete your account doesn't mean they have to delete your data.

Well, the cancellation page says:

"WARNING: Cancelling your MySpace account will permanently remove all of your profile information from MySpace, including your photos, comments, blog entries, videos, and your personal network of friends. This information cannot be restored. You may re-register your current email address after cancelling, but you will need to rebuild your personal network from scratch. "

Which seems to suggest that they will delete your data - assuming you're prepared to believe anything spewing from the many fetid mouths of the Murdochian Empire.

Re:Deleting does no good (3, Insightful)

mpe (36238) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495682)

Well, the cancellation page says:
"WARNING: Cancelling your MySpace account will permanently remove all of your profile information from MySpace, including your photos, comments, blog entries, videos, and your personal network of friends. This information cannot be restored. You may re-register your current email address after cancelling, but you will need to rebuild your personal network from scratch. "
Which seems to suggest that they will delete your data - assuming you're prepared to believe anything spewing from the many fetid mouths of the Murdochian Empire.


It only says that you can't get it back (in the original form) it says nothing about what the company may still be able to do with it. Even if they were actually telling lies what's likely to happen to them?

Re:Deleting does no good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496292)

Keep reading the cancellation page and you will also notice MySpace is selling a bridge in Brooklyn for mere peanuts.

Re:Deleting does no good (0, Redundant)

mpe (36238) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495624)

I don't think deleting your Myspace account will do anything. They already have your data and you already agreed to allow them to redistribute it, just because you delete your account doesn't mean they have to delete your data.

Might be better to somehow "pollute" the data first...

Re:Deleting does no good (1)

asdf7890 (1518587) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496458)

Might be better to somehow "pollute" the data first...

If enough people do this for them to care, all they have to do is scan for any updates that preceded an account close by a short amount of time and roll them back just as easily as they would undo a delete. I'm guessing old copies of the information are kept as well as the latest (now polluted if that is what you have done) for various reasons so this would not be at all difficult for them to do.

Re:Deleting does no good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495680)

Soooooo, don't delete it.

Populate it with flagrantly bogus / made-up data. May as well poison the well.

Re:Deleting does no good (1)

scorp1us (235526) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495818)

I thought I saw somewhere there was a site you could use to trash your data and close the account, or something to that effect. I can't remember where it was posted. I thought here. Anyone know what I'm talking about?

Re:Deleting does no good (1)

D Ninja (825055) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495992)

It's amazing that people will trade the labours of their mind for mere web hosting.

I'm looking at my friend's current status updates on Facebook. If this is the labors of the mind, I'm now really, really depressed...

What's in the data? (4, Interesting)

mea37 (1201159) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495306)

Yes, I see that it includes playlists and crap like that.

So what's the level of detail? Can I see an individual user, or just summaries at some predetermined granularity? If I can see individual users, can I see their name? If I buy a location-based dataset, can I see the exact GPS coordinates of a data point, or just ZIP code clusters, or what?

TFS is definitely worded to spread fear. As much as I dislike companies taking liberties with data they've collected - especially with no accountable opt-out for people who've already handed their data over with no expectation of this sort of behavior - I'd still like to know more about what's actually gonig on before jumping on the FUD bandwagon.

Oh, and seriously... if they are up to no good, do you really think deleting your account is going to make a difference? We're talking about the Internet; once you put something in, you can't take it back out.

Re:What's in the data? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495740)

We're talking about the Internet; once you put something in, you can't take it back out.

Ewwwwwww!!!!

Re:What's in the data? (1)

js_sebastian (946118) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496260)

Oh, and seriously... if they are up to no good, do you really think deleting your account is going to make a difference? We're talking about the Internet; once you put something in, you can't take it back out.

Up to no good? just because somebody doesn't want to have loads of his personal information sold to the highest bidder, you assume he is "up to no good"?

Ok, I get it, this has to be a troll... and I just bit..

I'm surprised ... (1)

krou (1027572) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495314)

... that this hadn't been done sooner. Murdoch no doubt wants some return on his investment, especially since traffic seems to be dropping [alexa.com] .

WTF!! (1)

kai_hiwatari (1642285) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495324)

*goes to delete whatever is left in my myspace account*

Re:WTF!! (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495788)

My mother used to call that "locking the barn door after the horse is stolen".

Re:WTF!! (1)

msuarezalvarez (667058) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495850)

You *have* a myspace account?!

Re:WTF!! (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495954)

Yeah, because if you can't see it, it has to be gone.

Same with editting. Like they don't store the previous versions of your profile.

MySpace? Who cares? You should be concerned about. (4, Insightful)

i_want_you_to_throw_ (559379) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495332)

Facebook. Obviously all that matters in any of these enterprises is that the owners make money. Facebook is hard charging and building pretty solid for the inevitable day, in the very near future is going to come when..
1. Facebook is bought by someone with DEEP pockets
2. The said purchasers looks to make money from all that data that has been amassed.
MySpace is Sunday School by comparison.

Re:MySpace? Who cares? You should be concerned abo (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495398)

Google won't always be owned by the original founders either...

Google has far more interesting information (3, Insightful)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495688)

Actually Google has far more information about individuals. The common perception that Google is a "search" company is mistaken. In truth they are a "targeted advertising" company. Search, GMail, Android, etc are ways to collect information on you and ways to deliver targeted ads. Google also delivers targeted ads to participating 3rd party web sites. Currently they do not sell profile information but if you want to list companies that are hypothetically in a position to do so in the future they certainly should be on the list.

Re:MySpace? Who cares? You should be concerned abo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496316)

By all means, share my info. I've spent the last few years using social networking sites to do nothing but build up a public history as a conscientious objector.

Re:MySpace? Who cares? You should be concerned abo (1)

CyborgWarrior (633205) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496362)

I think Facebook is going to go another route. By maintaining control of the data itself, Facebook is essentially creating a monopoly of the best targeted advertising data ever. Their policies are such that they can broker this data and sell it to the highest bidder. Or display ads to the highest bidder like they do right now. They make a good amount of money straight off of the advertisement bids and I'm sure they have much bigger schemes for reselling the data again. The more they keep their own shtick together the more valuable that particular data becomes and the higher rates they can charge for it. Google makes insane money off of their directed advertising and Facebook has them beat in quality of targeting by far. When it comes down to it, in the long run Facebook will have the deepest pockets all by itself.

simple myspace prophylactic rumor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495378)

there is a simple prophylactic: just spread the rumor that myspace causes spleen cancer.

I Still Use It... (3, Interesting)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495472)

I know that Myspace gets a lot of crap for their often ugly and tasteless profile pages, but I really love being able to customize my own HTML and CSS on my profile. It's funny to me that the often pro-choice Slashdot crowd sees these features as a bad thing. Sure, most people choose to use awful profile templates but personally I enjoy having the choice to add some clean and simple decorations. Facebook doesn't offer that choice, nor do they offer the choice to opt-out of a few terrible paragraphs in their ToS, which is why I left two years ago.

I will have to re-read the new Myspace ToS before I decide whether or not to cancel my account, but if they go the way of Facebook's "We can re-license your personal photographs to whomever we want" terms then I will certainly be leaving Myspace as well. Where will I go? Who knows, perhaps it's time for me to clean the dust off of my personal domain.

Re:I Still Use It... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495738)

I know that Myspace gets a lot of crap for their often ugly and tasteless profile pages, but I really love being able to customize my own HTML and CSS on my profile. It's funny to me that the often pro-choice Slashdot crowd sees these features as a bad thing. Sure, most people choose to use awful profile templates but personally I enjoy having the choice to add some clean and simple decorations

I assure you, that you are the only one that likes your page template. People don't hate choice, they hate ugly designs like yours, so they choose to use a system that doesn't allow people with bad taste ( %99.99 of the population) to burn their retinas.

Re:I Still Use It... (1)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496092)

Ahh, replying to one troll of an AC, but here goes: See my page [myspace.com] . For the record I have exactly 1 customization to the default template, it adds the strike-through text decoration to the musicians that I've already seen. Notice that I have a music player on my page, but it doesn't blast music at any volume until you click play. That's more customization they allow, first to include the music player and secondly to say "No, don't force my music on anyone who hasn't clicked play." I'm not bothered one bit if you don't like my profile, but don't knock it until you've seen it.

Re:I Still Use It... (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495820)

It's funny to me that the often pro-choice Slashdot crowd sees these features as a bad thing.

<blink> was a choice. 'Nuff sed.

Re:I Still Use It... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496100)

<blink> was a choice. 'Nuff sed.

Luckily, we now have nighttime execution squads for people who like to exercise that kind of HTML 'choice.'

Re:I Still Use It... (0)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495924)

>It's funny to me that the often pro-choice Slashdot crowd sees these features as a bad thing.

I'm all for restricting of interfaces. When usability and readability are important, non-designers shouldnt have access to things that allow garish colors, screaming music at load up, blinking, crazy fonts, animated gifs, etc. Myspace is just a geocities rehash. Notice I cant do these things in the comments section of slashdot, and we are all better off this way.

I also refuse to participate in forums that allow giant signature gifs, blinking tags, colored text, etc. I stick to slashdot, reddit, sdmb, and metafilter for the most part. The level of discourse is also higher there. Once morons realize that they cant upload their animated gifs of someone getting punched in the face or taking a shit they slither off back to godknowswhere.

Re:I Still Use It... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496262)

Good grief, could you be more of a UI Fascist?

use myspace? (1)

runyonave (1482739) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495510)

People still use this abomination of everything that is horrendous about web design?

I'll wait for the liquidation sale (1)

SlappyBastard (961143) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495546)

Admittedly, depending on who does the liquidation, they may mark things up and then place a 50% tag on the mark-up . . . but, we'll see.

News Corp *snicker* (1, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495614)

What do you expect from a company that gets a lot of its funding from Saudi Arabia [fastcompany.com] ? Murdoch is also investing in Saudi companies owned by the same person [marketwatch.com] .

If partnering up with one of the most oppressive regimes on the planet is all in a days work, how does your personal information on MySpace rate any concern?

Funny it never dawns on a certain segment of our population that one of our major cable news sources is heavily influenced by the Saudis. That would be particularly noticeable, on topics related to climate change.

TFS should read (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495632)

"So if you're worried about your data on MySpace being sold off to anybody with a few hundred dollars, now's the time to hop into the time machine and stop yourself in the past from ever opening that little-used account."

Antisocial non-networking me and other curmudgeons will try very hard to not gloat.

Cancelled (1)

Andy Smith (55346) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495662)

Scoundrels.

MySpace account now cancelled. I first edited my privacy settings to be the most restrictive possible, then closed the account. This was the reason I gave:

"Cancelling due to MySpace selling user info to companies that may use it for marketing. Please ensure that none of my info, either current or historical, is supplied under any circumstances to any third-party individual, group or other entity either commercial or non-commercial. Thank you."

Re:Cancelled (1)

alobar72 (974422) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496252)

do you have reason to believe this ectually helps, or are you just kidding ?

Even better (1)

Exitar (809068) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495686)

Create (or use your own if it doesn't contain information you care) and start to mess up with any kind of information you think they will gather.
Create music compilations with no sense, change your humor randomly, become friend of people with nothing in common and so on.
Be creative!

Or alternatively... (1)

rwa2 (4391) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495710)

Now I feel like creating a MySpace account just so I can create a single review entitled "This is how I tip my hat to total suckers who pay actual money for data plainly available for free on my personal website".

/ Seriously, what kind of loser has a MySpace account? I moved past that kind of thing after tinkering briefly with GeoCities :-P

Already public? What's the problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31495726)

Does this include public AND private profiles, or just public? If it's just public profiles, then the information they're talking about is already public. You can either spider the MySpace site yourself to collect the same data, or you can spare everyone the bandwidth charges and get a bulk copy.

It is the death sigh... (4, Interesting)

odin84gk (1162545) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495862)

Circuit City did the same thing when it went bankrupt. It sold all of its user data to other companies. This is just another sign that MySpace is dying.
(I went to Microcenter (AMAZING STORE! Better than Newegg!) and bought something. They already had my information and informed me that they bought it from Circuit City. I don't really mind, but it was still strange.)

pollute the data stream (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495920)

Never put your real name or any other real data into such services. I've been doing this for 15 years, and it's really hard to find me on people search sites.

A handy tip - mix and match real and fake data if you must use your real name. A real phone number and address from 15 years ago is quite handy. :)

I live close to a UPS store, where I rent a box. ALL my mail goes there. The only mail I get at home is the bulk coupon junk addressed to 'resident'.

Whew! (5, Funny)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495964)

It's times like this I'm glad I'm with Facebook!

Why panic now? (1)

HalAtWork (926717) | more than 4 years ago | (#31495978)

Why panic now? What's been stopping marketing/statistic entities from scraping and aggregating that data all along, from many sites? Perhaps there are agreements they have to sign to access the information, but how can anyone find out that's what they're doing if all they do is sell the aggregate data?

Not new (1)

danwesnor (896499) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496020)

They're just packaging up the info already available to the API - in other words, nefarious villians already have your data.

Give them data they can't use (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496060)

DON'T PANIC! Just go and replace your data with nonsensical, bad data. All's fair in such wars.

Delete the account?!? Huh? (1)

PolarIced (119874) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496068)

What makes you think that deleting the account will keep them from selling your info anyway? You probably waived any and all rights to privacy and such when you signed up in the first place. I just don't get what people are thinking these days.

Re:Delete the account?!? Huh? (1)

Jahf (21968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496578)

Which is exactly why I spent the 15 minutes necessary to:

1) delete all my old blog posts (moving them to another blog service)

2) message all of my remaining MySpace friends I was leaving and unfriended them

3) delete all my contact info, replacing mandatory fields with "PRIVATE", and changing my location and birth date to something random

4) change my contact address (used as your login) to my spam trap address

5) confirmed all the above

6) deleted the account

They may still have rights to the data after the deletion, but I doubt they have things in place to keep multiple deltas of your profile and sell those.

Pollute your data BEFORE you cancel your account.

????? problem solved (1)

Plekto (1018050) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496104)

1:Run online social site
2:Need to increase income
3:?????
4:Profit!

****
We just figured out what #3 is - sell user data to data mining company(read: foreign botnet, which is where it eventually does end up).

Unfortunately this seems to work for almost anything online. Expect targeted spam to increase tenfold in your email accounts due to this move by them. Well, that is, if you ever signed up for MySpace. Expect Facebook to follow in a few months or years.

It's about the Message! (1)

WarwickRyan (780794) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496124)

Okay, so they've sold your info. So deleting has no practical benefit as far as your existing data is concerned.

What is DOES do is send a message to the less terrible networks (Facebook, Twitter, LastFM, Google) that we, the users, take privacy seriously.

If we can make enough noise, get enough accounts deleted, then these companies will be less likely to flog our info to the highest bidder.

MySpace refuses to delete my account (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496268)

As previously noted, deleting one's MySpace account really won't do much, but it's interesting to note that I can't for the life of me convince MySpace to delete my account. I've tried several times now to go through the deletion process--it finishes off by saying that the process is not complete until I click a link in an email that they will send "shortly." But I never see the email--I use hotmail for a junk account, and that is the email address linked to my MySpace account, but I never actually get the email, not even in the junk mail folder.

Nothing to see here (1)

Jawn98685 (687784) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496520)

Stupid people gave their personal information to some ASP who promised, in writing, to do "whatever they fucking felt like doing" with that information. Now said stupid people are shocked.

Move along, now. Move along.

Update it misleadingly rather than delete it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31496524)

If you delete a profile, a buyer can specifically ask for all recent profiles plus deleted profiles.
But if your profile is still active, a buyer will / should always ask for the most recent data.
Hence, just change it to gibberish instead.

What's my cut? (1)

acoustix (123925) | more than 4 years ago | (#31496546)

After all, it *is* my information that they're selling - correct? Why do we allow companies to profit from our information? I should be paid a royalty for my information regardless of how they acquired it.

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