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Facebook Throws Privacy Advocates a Bone

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the a-very-small-bone dept.

Privacy 126

sarysa writes "In response to a week-long assault by privacy advocates, and following a well publicized all-hands meeting, Facebook has introduced two new security features in response to privacy concerns. One feature allows users to whitelist devices associated with a Facebook account, and the other allows users who verify their identity to view previous logins. While both are useful features, they do nothing to address the recent privacy complaints."

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126 comments

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Get Out The Lube (2, Funny)

Scholasticus (567646) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220334)

Throws them "a bone" or "the bone?"

Re:Get Out The Lube (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220490)

Throws them "a bone" or "the bone?"

More like, as in beastiality, "give a dog a bone."

Re:Get Out The Lube (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220710)

Are you using a British spelling, or are you just a stupid fuck?

No lube (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220620)

You're gonna bleed....

To quote a phrase, "Dumb fucks."

Old saying (0, Offtopic)

fustakrakich (1673220) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220876)

The meat is for the man
The bone is for the dog

What??? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220336)

This isn't a bone.. its not even scraps, its more like the leftover grease from a Macdonalds happy meal.

Re:What??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221840)

Let's face (sorry for the pun) facts...they need to really change their domain name to www.facecrooks.com

Red herring (4, Insightful)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220346)

is an idiomatic expression the purpose of which is to divert the audience from the truth or an item of significance. For example, in mystery fiction, an innocent party may be purposefully cast as highly suspicious through emphasis or descriptive techniques; attention is drawn away from the true guilty party.
---
How is this any different than my bank forcing me to get an 'authorization code' via Text every time I login with a computer that doesn't have their cookie set?

The ninth highest search on Google is "delete facebook account [sophos.com] "

Looks like the house of cards is starting to crumble. I know it's stupid, but maybe if they kept it simple like back in the day.... (Although I love the API for batch uploading photos [github.com] )

Non Sequitur (4, Insightful)

sexybomber (740588) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220358)

The result of this will be very telling. If the firestorm over Facebook's privacy settings dies down after they roll out two features that have absolutely nothing to do with the problems people had with them, then people are even bigger sheep than I thought they were. I weep for the future of civilization.

Re:Non Sequitur (5, Informative)

dontmakemethink (1186169) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220516)

Well we're talking about people who run scripts taken from Facebook pages promising them a $100 Walmart card, then when the card doesn't arrive, they make a group slagging Walmart for being dishonest, all the while not realizing it was a scam all along, Walmart had nothing to do with it, and their Facebook info is pwned. Last I saw before it was taken down, the anti-Walmart group had 78,000+ fans. The ENTIRE purpose of Facebook is to sell as much of your identity as they legally can. The more of your identity they can convince you to agree to share, the more money they make. Knowing this, I am still a Facebook user since I actually get most of my freelance work by following the actions of my peers and seeing when they're in the market for my services. For me it's definitely worth it to stay on my toes and maintain as much privacy as I can, but for most it's a trap with potentially dire consequences.

Re:Non Sequitur (2, Insightful)

mmaniaci (1200061) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221284)

I pity the fool who depends on Facebook for his well-being.

Re:Non Sequitur (3, Interesting)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221396)

The "$100 Walmart Gift Cards" have been around as long as I can remember. They fall under the same category as the "Free iPods" thing that went around the internet in 2003-2005.*

Facebook is now a popular website, so of course advertisers are going to target them. If you really want to see how targeted they can make ads, go create your own on facebook. [facebook.com] I'm using it to recruit for our Rugby team. I can target gender, age, interests, geographical area (and radius), etc.

*My first 'nice' camera was a Canon SD 550 that I got for free, I got one for my girlfriend at the time. I got 8 iPods for free (used one and sold off the rest). My parents have a MacMini I got for free. My main TV is a 37" 720p Samsung I got for free. I've gotten the $100 Walmart gift cards before.

You just have to read ALL the fine print and make sure you follow the rules/directions to the letter. Cancel any offers you set up (or use a disposable credit card number like I did).

Even MORE information for them! (5, Insightful)

Rand310 (264407) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220362)

When you white-list your computer, the suggestions are something like "my home computer", and "office computer 1", and "vacation computer". This simply provides facebook with even more personal information to use in targeted advertising. If anything, though this does enhance security, it is at the expense of even more of the user's privacy.

Re:Even MORE information for them! (0, Offtopic)

caladine (1290184) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220408)

If only I had mod points. This is exactly what I was thinking.

Security, not privacy (5, Insightful)

Protonk (599901) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220376)

Insofar as those two things are separate. Both of these measures are security measures. The former a convenience measure designed hopefully to get people to use better passwords in exchange for not having to remember them on a half dozen mobile devices. The latter for damage control of sorts.

The fundamental problem remains: facebook's founder and corporate elite have a specific interpretation of privacy, identity and self. Their service is built around this interpretation and so their users are forced to share it, operationally. That is the problem which eats away at the core of facebook. Small feature changes only shore up the edges.

Re:Security, not privacy (3, Informative)

ihatewinXP (638000) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220594)

I actually find this good news as I was worried there for a minute that Facebook was actually 'getting it' finally and was going to revamp its privacy policies in wake of all of the nasty criticism and high profile people leaving the site. Projects like Diaspora* http://joindiaspora.com/ [joindiaspora.com] can hopefully fill in the gaps that Facebook seems oblivious to. I have heard the criticisms that Diaspora* will be only for the technically adept - but I can see companies popping up to fill in the gaps if the market arises.

"The Network Effect" makes FB place incredibly useful and of course power users can wade through everything and get some decent privacy from the service - but I long for the day when that site is clearly in a myspace-esqe death spin as normal users start fleeing for better alternatives. It is the net; everything dies, so it goes. No juggernaut (AOL, Yahoo, Microsoft, Napster, Myspace....) has been able to tame it. Facebook will be no different - and all the faster with their current disregard for their userbase.

Re:Security, not privacy (3, Interesting)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221424)

Diaspora's main faults.

1) The name. MySpace. FaceBook. LinkedIn. Diaspora. Orkut. Which two don't belong?
2) They don't have a product. All they did was raise capital. The least they should have done would be to make a mockup or a working website.

All they really need, from me, to be a success is an easy way to upload photos, a way to tag people in photos and a way to share photos with people not on diaspora.

Re:Security, not privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221606)

"Orkut" means "Orgasms" in Finnish, so I guess that's the main reason it hasn't gained publicity here. That, and MySpace, nobody even knows what's that.

Re:Security, not privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221644)

Why do people keep mentioning a so-called open source project that to date has been successful at raising money, but has produced nothing of value. Are they amazing, mediocre, or horrible software developers? No way to tell because they have gone on a media campaign, spamming their awful name on blogs declaring how they plan to be the next great thing. That's great. How about sitting down and actually doing it. If the project looks promising, the funding will come, people will use it.

Re:Security, not privacy (1)

schmidt349 (690948) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220668)

[quote]That is the problem which eats away at the core of facebook. [/quote]

"Eats away at the core?" What specifically is the core and what is it that's getting eaten away? Privacy? The whole notion of Facebook is that you share information about yourself with other people. It is by its nature an collectivized exercise in voluntary and controlled loss of privacy. The question marks are the "voluntary" and the "controlled," but not really because you always have the choice _not to use Facebook_ or in the alternative _not to put up any personal information and use it as a glorified IM client_. In the end you always control your loss of information.

I do think in this most recent shenanigan that all users should have been given the option to strip their profiles automagically rather than have their interests transmuted into Pages. I don't really understand what the uproar is about though because I definitely got that option myself. Maybe that policy wasn't implemented consistently. They should have an oversight board to make sure slipups like that don't happen.

A brief tangent. One of the criticisms I hear a lot about social networking is that it's narcissistic because "nobody is that interesting. If that's true, why do people get so bent out of shape about privacy? If nothing about you is that interesting, who cares who else knows it?

Re:Security, not privacy (1)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220718)

Social vulnerabilities don't have to be 'interesting' for them to be worth manipulating. Embarassing revelations don't have to be 'interesting' for them to be embarassing.

What's with the monospace font?

Re:Security, not privacy (2, Insightful)

schmidt349 (690948) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220854)

If you can think of a way to "manipulate" or embarrass me because I like Into Thin Air and How to Train Your Dragon, then go nuts. You could maybe tell my DGS about the children's movie but he'll probably just ask me if his kids will like it. You know how nine year-olds are (the kids, not the DGS).

Your world is paranoid, hostile, and generally malevolent. That tells me a lot more about you than your Facebook profile would have.

Font was a screwup (selected Extrans by mistake).

Re:Security, not privacy (1)

Thinboy00 (1190815) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220996)

The core of Facebook is its userbase. GP claims people are leaving as a result of the loss of privacy.

Re:Security, not privacy (1)

Protonk (599901) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221230)

Meaning that the problem is central to the nature of the beast. If you take issue with facebook's privacy conventions, adjustment of various settings isn't going to cut it. I didn't say it would doom fb. This privacy thing will get a lot of people to cancel accounts, but you aren't going to see a real exodus until something new comes along, and I don't think that will happen for a while.

As for the solutions you mention, sure. You can leave facebook just like you can leave google. But I'm not interested in dichotomous breakdowns where bad policies can only be compelled and surrendered rights aren't worth complaining about. Take most EULAs, for example. You have to click "yes" to agree--if you disagree you can choose not to use the product or service. But what does that really say about consent? Can you modify the EULA if you have a complaint? Fuck no. Can you impose a similar restraint on the company for the right to have you as a customer? No. :) The resulting "agreement" lies in a large gray area between full consent and compulsion. It gets worse as products become more ubiquitous. Who in this thread has NEVER clicked an EULA for windows? For Flash? Likewise Facebook (and to a lesser extent google) demand an implicit contract in return for their free services. We can say that users have to agree, but does that even really compute? Do most facebook users understand the tradeoffs? Do they share the idea that people should have "one identity"? Do they think it is duplicitous to have more than one face in the online world? I doubt it. More importantly, are they empowered to make changes apart from cutting off their friends entirely?

Re:Security, not privacy (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220782)

Facebook's founder is pure evil. He stole the concept for Facebook, has hacked into the email accounts of people, and called people who trust him to keep data private "dumb fucks". All of this is DOCUMENTED and PROVEN.

Why anyone uses Facebook when these factors are known astounds me.

Re:Security, not privacy (2, Funny)

schmidt349 (690948) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220884)

Sure, if by "documented" and "proven" you mean "a judge literally laughed the plaintiffs out of court." But please, don't let the facts get in the way of your emotional outbursts.

Re:Security, not privacy (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220822)

I agree -- FB making some big hoopla about a couple of 'security' issues they're implementing is just smoke and mirrors. Security and Privacy can be interrelated but they are most definitely not interchangeable. It's sad when tech media writers cannot distinguish between the two and so easily fall into such an obvious ploy.

Aren't those security concerns, not privacy? (1)

ecocd (1660517) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220382)

They're good moves, don't get me wrong, but I'm more worried about all of the privacy data flying around to who-knows-where. Was anyone complaining about how a friend took their phone and logged into Facebook to look at their Friends' vacation photos? If someone hacks my account that's a completely separate issue.

BFD (0, Flamebait)

Vinegar Joe (998110) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220402)

Nobody is sticking a shotgun to anyone's head and forcing them to use Facebook.

Re:BFD (5, Interesting)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220506)


I'm sick of this extreme form of pointing and laughing.

No, no one is literally forcing you to use Facebook. You can gladly stay off of it.

Problem.

If any of your friends use Facebook, they can easily tag you in a photo without your ass ever knowing it. If any relatives use Facebook, they can easily mark your birthday as an event. If a boyfriend/girlfriend uses Facebook, they can boast about where you ate dinner.

If you ever joined Facebook, even if you joined back when they had the promise of privacy for those who sought it, you are permanently in their system, even if you try to delete your account.

If you stay off of Facebook, your friends and colleagues assume it's because of some anti-social horrible problem with you and treat you very differently.

But, you're right. No one is literally trying to kill you, so Facebook should be allowed to rape and pillage privacy rights.

Re:BFD (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220546)

If you stay off of Facebook, your friends and colleagues assume it's because of some anti-social horrible problem with you and treat you very differently.

Boo-hoo. You need to get a life. And maybe some new friends.

Re:BFD (-1, Flamebait)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220870)

Boo-hoo. Your life has great meaning, if you're posting AC to tell people to get a life. And maybe you should stop assuming that I used my own life as an example.

Re:BFD (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220930)

Boo-hoo. Your life has great meaning, if you're posting AC to tell people to get a life.

Said the poster under a fake name...

Oh, and you need to research the concept of an ad hominem attack and how it's logically irrelevant to the actual argument posited.

And maybe you should stop assuming that I used my own life as an example.

Hit too close to home, eh?

Here's what you posted:

If you stay off of Facebook, your friends and colleagues assume it's because of some anti-social horrible problem with you and treat you very differently.

Where the hell did you pull that from, if not your own damn miserable life?

Re:BFD (1)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220980)

From someone else's damn miserable life. I love that you're an AC who's replying, that's rare.

I can't find the comment I pulled that example from. If you really want to discredit my entire post because you're fixated on it being my boo-hoo miserable life, then I guess I can go find it for you. If you just want to step back, breathe, and just relax, we can do that too. All depends on how petty you are.

Re:BFD (1)

mister_playboy (1474163) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221416)

It's just an AC troll. Let it go.

Re:BFD (1)

slick7 (1703596) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221344)

"Said the poster under a fake name..."

said the Anonymous Coward.

Re:BFD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221016)

Not that simple for all of us since some of us involuntarily carry certain social luggage. My situation is that I'm almost the only one in my entire family that has sort of made it. Everyone else is more or less white trash. The fact of the matter is that whilst I still care about (some of) them and try to help out to the extent that I reasonably can, I simply have to limit what they know about my private life - where I work, what my hobbies are, whom I hang out with etc. Otherwise, I'd encounter what my mother (who is the only one of them to have finished high school) endures in her relatively frequent interactions with them: Being forced to call the cops when an intoxicated, mentally unstable cousin of mine forcefully tries to come to visit. Or endure the embarrassment of an uncle in a similar condition show up at her job. Or then let my father's twin brother know more about me even though he does his best to fuck things up for me because his own children are dumb as bricks and he envies my father because of my success. I was shocked when I found out how closely he almost stalks me considering that the last time I saw him was when I was a kid 16 years ago. Then I was fleeing to a car when he chased me with an axe yelling that he'd kill me (just things getting out of hand at an ordinary family visit). My father and he still keep in touch (which I cannot comprehend) and last year the twin brother taunted my father when he spotted what I had written in a newspaper about a bad experience with an insurance company (I had no idea he'd read anything at all). So when I'm already being stalked by relatives like that, I really don't want them to know anything more about me and consequently fb just isn't an option for me. Even though I almost every week meet new people that want to add me as a friend. So personally, I really hate facebook since it forces me to either come across as somewhat anti-social or be unable to leave behind all the shit that I endured as a kid.

Re:BFD (1)

slick7 (1703596) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221312)

Yeah, maybe you can find some on Chatroullette.

Re:BFD (5, Insightful)

Interoperable (1651953) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220742)

One of the most important aspects of friendship is trust. A friend is not defined by by clicking the "friend" button on a website, a friend is someone that you share a bond of mutual understanding and respect with. Friends have always had privileged access to embarrassing information, stories and photos because they're the people that you trust information like that with and sharing it strengthens those bonds.

Facebook doesn't change the nature of friendship, it just provides new ways of communicating. Providing people that you don't trust with information about your personal life is a poor idea, as it has always been. "Friending" someone changes the access that that person has to your personal information and such access should be granted on the basis of trust and respect. People need to be aware of the access privileges that they provide to different groups of peers. Facebook is a useful tool and can be almost a necessity for remaining in touch, but nobody is forcing you to change who you trust your information with.

One thing that I think would be a good idea for Facebook to implement would be rule-based access privileges for different groups that you can define. The groups shouldn't be visible to anyone other than yourself, of course; the last thing you'd need would be for "friends" to see that they weren't "good friends."

Re:BFD (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220840)

The point is that you can't absolutely control everything that other people do. No matter how much you trust people, unless a specific group is THE ONLY people you ever talk to, you can't guarantee anything.

Example: some of your friends have a party. Chances are that it's not going to just be the six of you there. There's going to be many people you don't really know that well. Those people can take pictures of the party and post them to Facebook; if you get tagged in there, that could be bad for you. Your only options to avoid that would be to either skip all parties forever, or sit in a corner the entire time and don't move (or drink), thus doing nothing that could be remotely damaging.

The bigger issue is naivety. Even if you trust people, they might not realize the damage they can do with Facebook--and I'd wager this is 90% of people using it. Unless all your friends are all Slashdot-types (Heaven help you if they are ;) ), they might do something that compromises you without realizing what they've done.

That's the problem with these things. It's the damage other people can do to you that's scary. The mere fact that you have to opt-out of what your friends can share about you is just ridiculous. It makes keeping anything but a bare-bones profile more risky than it's worth.

Another real issue with all this sharing of info is that privacy laws are based on what is "reasonable." For instance, you can't sue a newspaper if your face appears in the background of a photo taken in public. It's unreasonable to expect complete invisibility when in public. As such, as people share more and more, those things become reasonable in the eyes of the law. For instance, people don't encrypt their hard drives. If you do and you go through customs, they will presume you are hiding something and ask your to unlock it, and if you don't, they will detain you and break it themselves. In an extreme scenario, the very act of not having a Facebook account might make people (say, potential employers, or police even) assume you have something to hide and cost you.

Re:BFD (4, Informative)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220928)

There is no guarantee of privacy with Facebook. Even if you kept your information hidden to everyone but your friends, your friends can slip up. If they use an application to fill out a survey about you, for example, that application instantly gets free access to your information. If they take a picture and tag you in it, any of their friends can see it.

Plus, as Zuck made it obvious on the 13th, he's got all of your info and doesn't give a damn who gets it.

Facebook changed the nature of friendship. It gave people who don't care about privacy the ability to share private information about their friends with complete strangers, without ever getting consent from the friend.

One more thing (2, Informative)

Sensible Clod (771142) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221018)

Facebook changed the nature of friendship. It gave people who don't care about privacy the ability to share private information about their friends with complete strangers, without ever getting consent from the friend.

It actually goes one step further than that: It gave people who don't know every single detail of the TOS and all the other agreements the ability to share private information about their friends with complete strangers, without either friend's even knowing they've done so.

Re:BFD (1)

maccodemonkey (1438585) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222218)

"One thing that I think would be a good idea for Facebook to implement would be rule-based access privileges for different groups that you can define. The groups shouldn't be visible to anyone other than yourself, of course; the last thing you'd need would be for "friends" to see that they weren't "good friends.""

Facebook actually already has this. I use it all the time. Grouped my co-workers into a group, and I can exclude them from seeing certain posts (of a more personal nature, not things about them.)

Re:BFD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32222914)

Providing people that you don't trust with information about your personal life is a poor idea, as it has always been.

And that's why I use email when I want to communicate with my friends, not Facebook. I trust my friends. I don't trust Zuckerberg.

Re:BFD (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220744)

If you stay off of Facebook, your friends and colleagues assume it's because of some anti-social horrible problem with you and treat you very differently.

Really? Mine don't seem to, they just remember to email me with announcements for things, as well as posting them on Facebook. It probably helps that I run a mailing list that my friends use for announcing parties and so on, and have done since before most of them put their faces in the book. Most of my interaction with my friends doesn't go via the Internet at all though, so maybe I'm unusual and surrounded by other unusual people. It's hard to dance online.

Re:BFD (1, Insightful)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220850)

I hate to say it, but you are unusual. Go to a college. Any college. Every dorm at my college followed the same path: Facebook friend your room mates and everyone on your floor, so you can chat with them. Then shout responses to their Facebook messages so you can both laugh out loud. I wish I were joking.

The snarky, yet 'insightful', AC comment claiming that I need new friends (as if I was using my own circle of friends as an example, ha) is a beautiful dream. In the end, the average human being is stupid, and on Facebook. You can either dissociate yourself with the millions of people who use Facebook, or you can swallow your egotistical pride. The choice is yours, although you won't always like the results.

Re:BFD (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221066)

I hate to say it, but you are unusual. Go to a college. Any college. Every dorm at my college followed the same path: Facebook friend your room mates and everyone on your floor, so you can chat with them. Then shout responses to their Facebook messages so you can both laugh out loud. I wish I were joking.

Oooh! You're in COLLEGE!!!. Wow, I'm impressed.

NOT.

So, you DO need to get a better life...

The snarky, yet 'insightful', AC comment claiming that I need new friends (as if I was using my own circle of friends as an example, ha) is a beautiful dream. In the end, the average human being is stupid, and on Facebook. You can either dissociate yourself with the millions of people who use Facebook, or you can swallow your egotistical pride. The choice is yours, although you won't always like the results.

Yeah, the example you pulled was, umm, your nephew. Yeah, that's it. Your nephew.

HA HA HA HA HA

God, you're not only a sheltered twit, you ADVERTISE that you're a sheltered twit with "friends" that would shun you for not being on Facebook.

And I love how you call everyone on Facebook "stupid" but you had to "swallow your egotistical pride" to associate with them.

Get over yourself.

Re:BFD (0, Offtopic)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220788)

If a boyfriend/girlfriend uses Facebook

We don't care what a boyfriend/girlfriend does on facebook.

Now if they were ours, that would be different - but let's not get into extreme "what if" scenarios here.

Re:BFD (1)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220902)

Oh please, don't get pedantic. You obviously understood the point of what I was saying, but chose to ignore it.

Re:BFD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221346)

LOL@U N00B.

P.S. Whooooosh.

Re:BFD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220890)

If any of your friends use Facebook, they can easily tag you in a photo without your ass ever knowing it.

And your existence and participation in Facebook stops any of that? Because seriously, if your "friends" tag you in a photo in a way you have complaints about, this implies that A) they're not particularly good friends, and/or B) they're assholes who aren't going to stop doing that if you're around. And if they ARE good friends who AREN'T assholes, you can just ask them to stop in some way that isn't Facebook.

How about some random guy/girl you don't know with a Facebook account who saw you in the street and took a cell phone camera pic of you? How about some random guy/girl you don't know without a Facebook account who did the same thing? Will you having a Facebook account stop that? Or would you have to have an account with every single photo publishing service on the internet and keep up with every single one, 24/7, to prevent people from seeing pictures of you in ways you didn't want?

If you stay off of Facebook, your friends and colleagues assume it's because of some anti-social horrible problem with you and treat you very differently.

You have some truly fucked up friends and colleagues, dude. Seriously.

Re:BFD (1)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220950)

No, it does not. I never once implied that joining Facebook magically improves your security. However, if you never register, you never know if you're tagged in a picture. I wore a Halloween costume and someone took a picture of me. Someone told me I was on a Facebook picture. Could I find it? No. Is my name on it? Who knows? I don't know the person who has the picture; but they obviously have access to my friends, so maybe they know my name.

And I'm not sure what this strange fascination is with ACs and believing I was personally attributing that friends/colleagues comment to my personal life. I keep better friends, but you are damn delusional if you don't think the average drooling moron is exactly like that.

Re:BFD (1)

siride (974284) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221280)

Anybody could put a picture of your on a blog or a personal website, or on a telephone pole. You worried about that? If you are worried about people taking pictures of you doing stupid things, then maybe you shouldn't do stupid things. Even without cameras, people could still tell other people about what you did. It's not as though people in the pre-internet days had no idea what you were up to ever.

And even if the picture is on Facebook, it's really not personally identifying in any structured way except to friends. You can't search on it. It's not connected with an email address or user account. It might as well not be there.

Re:BFD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32222764)

And even if the picture is on Facebook, it's really not personally identifying in any structured way except to friends. You can't search on it. It's not connected with an email address or user account. It might as well not be there.

This is not true at all. People can find Facebook profiles via Google searches now--you have to turn OFF to prevent it (not turn it on to ALLOW it).

Scenario: A potential employer Googles your name, or searches Facebook. They find the profile of a clueless person who has no idea of the privacy settings on Facebook that has your picture on it. If that picture is of you drinking too much, you might not get the job.

Further, you don't even have to know this person. They could simply be someone who knows someone who knows you, and went to the same party as you. Then one of your asshole acquaintances tagged you because they thought they were making the internet a better place.

Re:BFD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220990)

>

If any of this causes you a serious a problem, of course, you can engage an attorney and sue both your friends and Facebook for damages resulting from their use of your image or information.

Most Facebook problems seem to arise from people posting stuff about themselves that they shouldn't be posting. They violate their own privacy. The solution to that is simple. Don't use Facebook.

Re:BFD (1)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221020)

Suing shouldn't be the only solution. Facebook actually has rules written in about how you can sue them; I have no idea if those rules need be followed, I certainly doubt it's true. Even so, suing is expensive and tedious.

It saddens me deeply that the only way to protect one's privacy from idiocy is to sue.

Re:BFD (1)

slick7 (1703596) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221294)

If you stay off of Facebook, your friends and colleagues assume it's because of some anti-social horrible problem with you and treat you very differently.

Is this called the Lemming syndrome? It sounds like you sheeple need to turn off the stupid box and get out more often.

Re:BFD (1)

tknd (979052) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221422)

If any of your friends use Facebook, they can easily tag you in a photo without your ass ever knowing it. If any relatives use Facebook, they can easily mark your birthday as an event. If a boyfriend/girlfriend uses Facebook, they can boast about where you ate dinner.

I don't see how this changes much. The same information was/is still acquired without facebook. People take out the family album all the time and people (especially parents) are happy to tell the world about children's birthdays called "birthday parties". Your girlfriend also probably tells her friends about where you went for your dinner. People are also known to spread random facts and lies about you. They're called rumors.

If you stay off of Facebook, your friends and colleagues assume it's because of some anti-social horrible problem with you and treat you very differently.

Perhaps the younger generations do this but I don't think anything of it. I do know one person that refuses to use many of the "modern" forms of communication including facebook and text messaging. That is fine except that this person also expects us to call her (voice call) and invite her individually for random small events like say watching a movie. That is bologna because I'm not going to go out of my way to call everyone else and invite them personally for something so trivial when the current mode of operation is to blast out a text message to everyone and see who's interested, THEN start communicating with those people individually. Even then I don't really treat this individual any differently, I do give her crap about making us jump through hoops to satisfy her availability.

Re:BFD (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221990)

If any of your friends use Facebook, they can easily tag you in a photo without your ass ever knowing it. If any relatives use Facebook, they can easily mark your birthday as an event. If a boyfriend/girlfriend uses Facebook, they can boast about where you ate dinner.

All of this information could be aggregated anyway. The problem with facebook is centralization. And if you don't have a facebook account, then while people can tag stuff with your name, it's not linked to your identity in any other way. If it's not linked to a facebook account, a tagging isn't a link at all, it's just an annotation.

Re:BFD (1)

rcharbon (123915) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222808)

Then maybe the problem is with your friends/family/etc... and their lack of respect for your privacy? But it's easier to blame Facebook for not providing an expensive system for free that manages the data freely provided to it in the exact fashion you want it managed so you can interact with any and everyone, but only how and when you want to.

Not to pick on you in particular. Just all the people like you.

The internet and the apps it supports make all kinds of data more readily available to anyone. Not just the data we want shared - all data. The RIAA wishes it wasn't so easy to share music. You wish it wasn't so easy to share your personal info. I wish Company X did a better job of protecting credit card numbers. Too bad - too late.

wha? (0, Troll)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220418)

Facebook is so 3 years ago. People still use it?

Re:wha? (2, Interesting)

epte (949662) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220502)

What do you use instead?

Re:wha? (5, Insightful)

Bearhouse (1034238) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220548)

Email, a blog and - if just for photos - Picasa; all freely available from Google...

Re:wha? (2, Funny)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220774)

google, the company that knows you searched for "gay bars in Atlanta", "hurts when I pee", "red spots on penis" and "free vd clinic atlanta" all within the last week?

Re:wha? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220900)

For some reason, I always thought Larry Bagina as a loose vagina, but he is actually worse than that!

I strongly advise you to see a doctor or two. Seriously.

Re:wha? (1)

Imrik (148191) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221234)

At least Google is only using that data themselves rather than selling it to anyone and everyone. (at least for now)

Re:wha? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221856)

Why are you looking my last queries?

Re:wha? (2, Interesting)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222100)

And really, we should all be able to just use any blog with syndication for this purpose. Just give your URL to anyone who you want to 'follow' you. Protect it if that's not everyone. Perhaps what we need is some sort of standard for mixing RSS and certificate authentication?

Re:wha? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220566)

Friendster

Re:wha? (1)

slick7 (1703596) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221380)

Seven puppies were harmed during the making of this post.

I love puppies...and only 140 calories per serving.

Irrelevant measures, bordering the insulting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220434)

If the company was any serious regarding their user's privacy and rights then they wouldn't come up with a propaganda campaign regarding supposedly intensive talks on privacy (which was nothing more than a PR stunt to come off as seriously facing this profoundly serious problem while doing absolutely nothing) to, in the end, come up with absolutely pathetic measures such as past logins and associating devices with the user accounts.

These measures are profoundly insulting to any semi-intelligent user . They amount to nothing more than hand-waving and bring absolutely nothing to the privacy field, let alone do any thing protect it. Facebook still keeps generating it's income by abusing all their user's privacy and it still presents a serious security problem, as they intentionally and intensively sell very personal information they continuously compile from their herd of users.

Throw your yourself a bone when you quit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220464)

Delete your account the night before your birthday. That way, your friends are aware of your birthday (because FB notifies people of this a few days in advance), and when they go to wish you a happy one, but can't, they'll contact you and ask what's up. You can simply reply you've stopped using FB for privacy concerns.

You won't sound preachy and paranoid to them, you'll just reinforce to them by example why they may not want to use this service. Also, in somewhat notable and dramatic fashion you'll be telling your friends that from now on they'll need to contact you the old fashioned way.

Re:Throw your yourself a bone when you quit (1)

archshade (1276436) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221112)

No need to wait for your birthday to role around.

I have recently decided to leave FB partially due to privacy reasons and partially because I'm bored of my inbox being full of messages from people on Facebook asking why I haven't been on Facebook in a week or so. So I updated my status saying that I would soon be leaving permanently. I don't like Facebook and I wish I could just stop using it but friends use it to invite me to partys and nights ou,t so is if I don't use it I will end up sitting at home alone. I have now told them (using there preferred contact method) that I'm off and all the people who I really care about staying in contact with will either have my contact details or be able to get hold of them in the next week or two.

Hopefully this time next month I will not have a Facebook account at all.

sp0n6e (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220470)

shout the loudest win out; either the At death's door However I don't expulsion of IPF You can/. When the Share. FreeBSD is paper towels consider that right serves to reinforce if you move a table theorists - you can. No, today. It's about faster, cheaper, result of a quarrel so that you don't as those non gay, OpenBSD wanker Theo Short of a miracle empire in decline, to the transmission fear the reaper to you by Penisbird FreeBSD's AASOCIATION OF And she ran

Is Facebook toast? (3, Interesting)

BenEnglishAtHome (449670) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220556)

The morning drive-time radio DJ I listen to (Rod Ryan in Houston) did a segment yesterday on how people were fleeing Facebook due to privacy concerns. He interviewed his own interns who all said the same thing "I've shut down my Facebook account. I'm not going back there." (or words to that effect).

When it breaks to the mainstream press that Facebook is bleeding subscribers, when even the morning DJ runs a long segment on the problems with Facebook and talking about how to go about leaving Facebook, then I'm prompted to ask - Is Facebook toast?

More down to earth - Was that DJ right? Is Facebook losing huge numbers? Is there any way to know for sure?

Re:Is Facebook toast? (3, Insightful)

junglebeast (1497399) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220632)

I think a lot of people are angry. At this point a lot of people are revolting by using fake names, or putting less info in their profile. But you can't really leave it yet because the social connections it provides are useful even if you hate it. I think that people are just waiting for something better to come along, and when that thing comes, it will give Facebook a run for its money and force them to either change their ways or lose the battle. Remember when Facebook took over myspace? The same can happen again.

Re:Is Facebook toast? (2, Informative)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221306)

This. I nuked pretty much everything but friend lists and an email address, but one does not turn away from a total monopoly overnight. I can count on one hand the number of people I know who don't have facebook (and consider that unlike most situations, the set of people I know is actually quite relevant here)

Re:Is Facebook toast? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32222696)

a lot of people are revolting

I agree entirely.

Re:Is Facebook toast? (2, Insightful)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221050)

More down to earth - Was that DJ right? Is Facebook losing huge numbers? Is there any way to know for sure?

If you're on Facebook, there's a really easy way to tell: Have any of your friends dropped off?

I can say that none of my friends or family have, and every single one of them is aware of the privacy issues that have been talked about. It's in the mainstream news, after all.

Until there's an easy way for them to migrate to another service - and when I say easy, I mean an easy way to move all their photos, etc. and perhaps even more importantly, apps such as iLike/Music or any of the popular games - they'll very well stay put on Facebook.

Re:Is Facebook toast? (1)

24-bit Voxel (672674) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222864)

When the number 1 search on google is "How Do I delete my facebook account" you know that facebook is hurting.

You can test this by typing "How Do I" on google.

I'd say that these privacy concerns are hurting them, especially since the whole point of facebook was originally privacy. The bait and switch just doesn't work these days.

I'm glad I never opened a facebook account...

Really? (1)

LBArrettAnderson (655246) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220564)

Did they claim that these two *security* features were in response to the privacy concerns? Or did speculation make that connection? I agree that there are privacy problems, but unless they claim that this is in response to those concerns, don't assume that they are.

Re:Really? (1)

assassinator42 (844848) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220802)

As far as I can tell, this is just speculation on the part of the article author. I don't see any mention of privacy on the Facebook blog post. I didn't hear anything about privacy when I first heard this story on NPR yesterday either.

In other news... (5, Funny)

wbren (682133) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220598)

In response to concerns about its exploding car engines, a major car manufacturer has added additional cup holders to its vehicles.

Re:In other news... (2, Interesting)

LBArrettAnderson (655246) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221548)

I don't see anywhere where facebook claims that these new features were a response to the privacy concerns.

Privacy != Security (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220756)

Funny how Facebook implements these new security measures when most of the uproar has been over privacy issues relating to changes in their terms of service (changes which were made without user consent or re-agreement).

Seems like an attempt at misdirection to me.

Diaspora (1)

TehZorroness (1104427) | more than 4 years ago | (#32220796)

One of my friends showed me this project. It looks promising. http://www.joindiaspora.com/ [joindiaspora.com]

Essentially, a peer to peer open source social network

Re:Diaspora (1)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221320)

Is it going to be usable by people who don't leave their computers on 24/7? And I noticed the phrase "pgp" in the description. While I agree this is the right way to do it in abstract, I question if it will be too complex for the average person to care enoug hto bother with.

You fool (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220816)

All major social sites are under USA's "security" agencies control for at least 2 reasons, they use your and others data to figure out what the masses are currently about and they also use such public places (including /. of course) for propaganda, like posting anti-Iran propaganda while filtering (removing) critical comments which tell what's really going on (especially if there's proof in the comments).
You don't have to agree with me, but you have to read non-western media too if being objective means a lot to you.
Bottom line, don't complain about lack of privacy and security because if you do - it means you're naive and/or stupid at best.
Now, certainly some smart a$$ should prove his asininity while replying to this comment.

These features existed long ago. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220926)

These features have been around for longer than the meeting. Facebook is just screwing everyone over.

Too little, too late (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32220968)

Credibility is hard to build and easy to lose and Zuckerberg's crew has lost it thoroughly and permanently. The "dumb fucks" story has already been told and the decisive minority (essentially the opinion makers of the Internet) has already decided: Facebook is a dead man walking. Can't say I'm sorry to see them go. The question is now how long will they be able to delay their demise and who will replace them.

Completely Irrelevant (4, Insightful)

coaxial (28297) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221140)

I didn't "quit"[*] because I was afraid my data was being leaked to my phone. I "quit" because it was being leaked across the whole goddamn Internet. This move is beyond worthless, and shows just how Zuck doesn't get it.

  [*] No one really quits. They just "deactivate," while facebook keeps all your data. Remember when Facebook said that users owned their own data [facebook.com] , yet never provided a way to completely delete it, nor export it [acm.org] ? Talk is cheap. Platitudes even cheaper. Code is law [harvardmagazine.com] .

Re:Completely Irrelevant (3, Informative)

cymbeline (1792306) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221762)

There is an option beyond deactivating: http://www.facebook.com/help/contact.php?show_form=delete_account [facebook.com] . That is what I've done, but I haven't confirmed whether or not they have erased all my data. And yes, that link was rather difficult to find. I was first tricked into deactivating my account when I attempted to delete it. In addition, you are completely right about exporting. It took me around an hour to download and save each individual photo I had.

They don't get it (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221368)

"It's clear that despite our efforts, we are not doing a good-enough job [of] communicating the changes that we're making," Elliot Schrage, vice president for public policy at Facebook said to the New York Times.

No. You're not getting it.

If people disagree with what you're doing, it's not a question of your needing to communicate better.

Is every minute detail of Facebook news worthy? (1)

junglebeast (1497399) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221492)

This is not a "bone for privacy advocates." It's a tiny, insignificant little thing that changes nothing and barely warrants an update on the Facebook site. So why do all these trivial little details become Slashdot news worthy?

Don't get me wrong, I am glad that Slashdot does keep me up to date with the more critical Facebook changes, but I find it a bit pathetic that Slashdot users feel the need to use the news literaly as a changelog for Facebook.

Register this computer? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32221528)

Hah, so i just tried to log in to Facebook to tell my friends about this, and now Facebook requires me to "Register this computer" in order to continue. No option to do otherwise. All you can do is click on the facebook logo, which then asks for your password again. SO now I can't use facebook at all unless I "register my computer".

Zuckerberg is a Bitch.

And whats with verifying your identity? I mean, aren't my 100 friends enough verification? Who needs my verification?

Selling the opposite... (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#32221868)

So essentially they are selling one feature to lower your privacy, and one to guarantee uniqueness (veeery useful for advertisers) as “more privacy”.

That is spin doctor masters’ class stuff right there.
Unfortunately they are not actual masters, as it’s in-you-face obvious that it’s fucked up.
Should have asked the MAFIAA instead of Glenn Beck for advice. ^^

McNeally was right! (2, Insightful)

CuteSteveJobs (1343851) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222082)

Zuckenberg's strategy on privacy has long been to do something, see what the reaction is, then peddle backwards or forwards as appropriate. Then do it again. Creeping forward while they're not looking has worked brilliantly for Google. I hate the idea of their recording my search history and scanning my e-mail, but slowly I've learned (unwisely?) to trust them and so while those things bother me still, they don't bother me so much as they used to.

Look at Google's recent scanning of Wireless networks from the Streetview cars. Supposedly this was an accident. Oh LOL. But if they do it again in a few years maybe by then people won't mind. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/05/13/2898947.htm?section=business [abc.net.au] In most countries we even accept Google peeping over our fences, literally! When this news broke I remember some people (who presumably weren't employed by Google) vigorously defending Google's rights to do this: the public screaming for less privacy. http://www.smh.com.au/technology/biz-tech/google-to-reshoot-japanese-street-view-images-20090615-c9f1.html [smh.com.au]

We shot the messenger when Scott McNeally said we had no privacy - get over it, but he knew what we didn't: Never stand between a corporation and a pot of money.

Re:McNeally was right! (1)

carp3_noct3m (1185697) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222224)

Hit the nail on the head my friend.

Re:McNeally was right! (1)

Klinky (636952) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222752)

The whole wifi-snarfing things is overblown. You're broadcasting on public airwaves, anyone can collect your encrypted or unencrypted data. Also streets are public, anyone can walk down them and take a picture. People are concerned over the massive scale that Google does it on. Never the less, it's public data and who know how this public data might be useful on a massive scale. It's not as though Google is barging into your home to street map it, nor does it appear they were running massively parallel crack attempts to get into your wireless network.

I say this know, but I'll probably change my tune once Google maps me walking down the street in my underwear and snarfs me on 4chan...

In prison... (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 4 years ago | (#32222504)

I had more privacy than Facebook.

Glad I wiped my FB.

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