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Lighthearted Facebook Friends Could Make You Join NAMBLA Group

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the ground-floor dept.

Facebook 178

mykos writes "The Facebook groups feature is causing bit of a stir with its users. TechCrunch editor Michael Arrington was allegedly added to a group about NAMBLA, and in turn, he added Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. It's all in good (albeit tasteless) fun, except when a harmless joke goes awry and you find yourself being detained by customs when a friend decided to drag you into a mock terrorist group. Facebook representatives are aware of the matter, but are dismissive of it. A Facebook spokeswoman said, 'If you have a friend that is adding you to Groups you do not want to belong to, or they are behaving in a way that bothers you, you can tell them to stop doing it, block them or remove them as a friend — and they will no longer EVER have the ability to add you to any Group.' In somewhat related news, guillotines ensure you won't have dandruff on your shoulders anymore."

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178 comments

yet another reason (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835474)

not to use facebook. This can have some SERIOUS consequences for people working in the defence industry where security is well known to have a humor level of 0.

Re:yet another reason (3, Informative)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835898)

Won't help. A perfect stranger could put up info, pictures, etc that could be just as damaging, even if you have nothing to do with them or facebook.

Re:yet another reason (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835992)

A few years ago I was surprised to discover that I had a page on Facebook. Someone had taken info from my web site, altered it in a rather unflattering and libelous manner, and created a profile that claimed to be mine. A few months later I got fired - for no apparent or stated reason - from my job, and I can't help wondering if there was a connection.

Re:yet another reason (1, Redundant)

Mike Hock (249988) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836340)

Proof ...or it didn't happen!!

Re:yet another reason (4, Interesting)

Austerity Empowers (669817) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836614)

Happens a lot, not always with evil intent but ends up that way. Two of my coworkers have set up a sock puppet facebook account for a third coworker who is a relative technophobe but had recently acquired an iPhone. They found immense humor in his having the iPhone and felt that "facebook was the next logical step". They invited a lot of his friends, and made routine posts about his life that were factual although somewhat snarky. Anyone who knows the guy personally knew instantly that he wasn't operating the account. It was all in good fun, until someone posted something that was considered company confidential (by a petty piece of shit manager whose IQ may or may not exceed that of a 2x4). That got reported to the boss of the victimized coworker, said coworker of course has no idea what's going on, it stopped being funny at that point. The perpetrators did come forth and submit to their flogging, fortunately, but I can easily see facebook being damaging even if you avoid it.

Re:yet another reason (3, Interesting)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836016)

    You know, you're totally correct there.

    In one of my group of friends (real world, not just online), all but one had a Facebook account. They told him, "You'd better set one up." There was a legitimate reason for it, he just never got around to it. Since he didn't, they did. It had his name, picture, and they were posting comments for him. It was kind of humorous. And no, they didn't sign him up for anything illicit. :) It was enough encouragement for him to finally set up his own account, so they took the bogus one down.

    Now, what's the difference between friends doing it for a friend, and someone doing it for their own nefarious purposes? Well, just about nothing, except the nefarious purposes would likely get that person in trouble.

    We've all seen stories where someone got in legal trouble for pictures they posted. Like, a school teacher drinking beer, or a suspect in a case bragging about what they did. I found a profile not long ago of a rather attractive woman local to me. She was (or still is) a teacher at a local high school. By the posted comments, it was pretty apparent that it wasn't really the teacher. But if they were written a little better, some of the comments would have been damning. There were things about her liking sex with young boys, and frequent drug and alcohol abuse.

    I'm sure this kind of thing happens all the time. So how do you tell? Well, you don't. If I wanted to put up a profile of a popular figure, and I filled it with things that were really happening to them, and photos gleaned from tabloid news sites and regular media, it would look perfectly legitimate.

    Hmmm.

    [JWSmythe goes off looking for photos of Bill Gates and the link to the NAMBLA group]

Facebog (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835476)

Why bother with that pile of snakes?

Yes, learn to grow up folks (4, Insightful)

Etcetera (14711) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835484)

If your "friends" refuse to respect your request, then they're not really your friends. If they're not really a friend, why are they a "friend"?

Facebook to users: We give you tools with which to communicate with people you trust. If you don't trust them, don't allow them to use those tools with you.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835556)

Sometimes the only way to get ahead with your farm is to say that you are a 13 year old boy who likes older men.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (5, Insightful)

PatHMV (701344) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835610)

Well, no. I'm FB friends with my younger brothers. The youngest is in high school, and has the sense of humor one expects to find in bright, 16 year old boys... rather juvenile. I'm not going to de-friend my brother. I work at helping to teach him what's appropriate and what's inappropriate, but of course that's not always successful. If he were to add me to some group because of some childish whim of his, that doesn't mean he's not my friend... just that he's exercised some bad judgment.

Do you immediately ditch all your friends the instant they do something against your wishes? If so, I doubt you have many left. Most of us have at least a few friends who on occasion act a bit like an asshole, but are our friends nevertheless.

The REAL problem here is Facebook failing to let its users have control over what other users do to an aspect of our account. I can un-tag myself from pictures. I can turn off the ability of others to tag me in photos. Why can't I turn off the ability of other users to tag me in (i.e., make me a "member" of) groups? I should have complete control over all aspects of where my FB identity is linked in FB.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835862)

Removing your friends from a social network, isn't actually removing them as friends in real life. The real problem here, is that you can't tell fiction from reality, and that FB actually allows friends to add your to groups.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (5, Insightful)

twidarkling (1537077) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835944)

spoken like someone who's never had to explain to someone why someone was removed from a friends list. People get pretty damned pissy at things like that, especially family, or if they think they were just kidding around, and you're taking it too seriously. So yes, removing a friend from a social network can have a detrimental effect on having them as friends in real life.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (-1, Flamebait)

glrotate (300695) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836398)

Are you 12?

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (1)

operagost (62405) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836558)

He probably isn't, but said friends and family might be.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (-1, Troll)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836554)

Sounds like you need to find friends that are less shallow.

If someone loses their mind over you un-friending them on facebook, they have a major mental problem.

Life is too short to have friends that are nuts.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (2, Insightful)

qoncept (599709) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835906)

Amazing, isn't it? Your friends and family can affect your real life! And the only choice you have is to either deal with it or cut off all ties to them. Ever seen Black Sheep?

The summary sure is rich. Removing someone from your Facebook friends is akin to cutting off your head. Brilliant.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836344)

I think the summary was more like making the analogy that it's extreme to defriend somebody over a grouping issue as it's extreme to dehead somebody over a bad case of dandruff. Both are 100% effective, yes, but not necessarily the best route. There's, y'know, catching your hair on fire and keeping the rest of your head on your shoulders. There's, y'know, catching your friend on fire but not getting rid of 'em on facebook. There are other better solutions is what I'm saying.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836444)

it's an analogy. black:dark::white:light does not in any way attempt to say that black is the same as white.

Similarly, cutting off your facebook friend because of this group thing is an overly extreme method of dealing with this issue, just as cutting off one's head is an overly extreme method of dealing with dandruff. Sure it'll work, but there really should be a more practical and reasonable way of handling the issue.

i have a feeling the SATs weren't kind to you.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (2, Insightful)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836652)

Removing someone from your Facebook friends is akin to cutting off your head. Brilliant.

Uh, no.. remember those "A is to B" as "X is to Y" questions? Comparing A to X is irrelevant without factoring in B and Y. "2 is to 3" as "100 is to 150". Nobody's saying 2 is like 100.

That said, I agree that removing someone from FB friends is not quite as disproportionate a response as the author seems to believe.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (4, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835618)

Right. But lots of famous people will allow almost anyone to be their 'friend' so that they can hawk their latest book, CD, movie, coffee cup or whatever.

So, for example, you could friend, say Barack Obama [facebook.com] , and then start a group called, say 'Friends of Osama Bin Laden' or 'the Al Qaeda United Terror Front' or whatever and hilarity then ensures.

Not that I'm suggesting anyone should do that.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836666)

Stay where you are.
We'll be there in a couple of minutes.

The Brute Squad.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (0, Troll)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835620)

Because "friends" lists are the new huge schlong.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (1)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836228)

And the chicks keep winning that game. :(

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (3, Informative)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835638)

Of course, relationships change. You can have a friend, and then he learns something about you which makes him hate you (doesn't matter if it's true or not, as long as he believes it's true). You cannot know this before he makes it known to you. And if he decides to make it known to you by doing revenge, you cannot prevent it, because you cannot expect it.

Moreover, someone who was never really a friend can play a friend exactly to get your trust, and thus to enable him to do more serious damage to you.

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (2, Interesting)

Angst Badger (8636) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835702)

A Facebook spokeswoman said, 'If you have a friend that is adding you to Groups you do not want to belong to, or they are behaving in a way that bothers you, you can tell them to stop doing it, block them or remove them as a friend -- and they will no longer EVER have the ability to add you to any Group.' In somewhat related news, guillotines ensure you won't have dandruff on your shoulders anymore.

Yeah, I'm a bit puzzled by the submitter's reaction, too. It may be the norm among high school jocks, college frat boys, and, after graduation, stalkers, to use abusive behavior as a form of affection, but mature, self-respecting people don't put up with it. Blocking someone on Facebook is what, two or three clicks? Anyone who thinks that's like the guillotine really needs to develop some perspective.

even close friends i don't trust with everything (5, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835732)

you are offering the absurd choice: trust your friends with everything or have no friends

no, i want friends, and i want to decide how much i trust each one. am i asking too much?

your understanding of what friendship means is crude and useless

Re:Yes, learn to grow up folks (3, Insightful)

bytestorm (1296659) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835880)

The tool should allow me to disable tagging of me by others in groups, pictures, notes, thus becoming more versatile, allowing me to also communicate with acquaintances and the general public with tiered levels of access.

Wait.. WHAT? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835492)

If you have a friend that is adding you to Groups you do not want to belong to

That's how it works?
So, instead of inviting someone to join the group, you can just add them?

Dumb fucks.

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (5, Interesting)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835608)

It's almost as if Facebook is a gigantic sociological test lab. The idea is to make the whole thing incrementally more ridiculous and obnoxious, and then measure how far you can push people before they quit.

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (-1, Troll)

koreaman (835838) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835634)

No, actually you just invite them. No one has to join any groups you ask them to join. I have no idea what the issue is: if you don't want people thinking you molest boys then don't join NAMBLA for fuck's sake.

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (4, Informative)

PatHMV (701344) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835666)

I know it's /., but please at least RTFS (read the f'ing SUMMARY), which explains that this is a NEW Facebook feature, which works DIFFERENTLY from the OLD Facebook feature. You've just described the OLD Facebook group feature. This one works differently.

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (4, Funny)

koreaman (835838) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835762)

Looks like you're right -- I apologize for my ignorance.

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (-1, Troll)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835924)

Even with a mountain of evidence in front of you, including 18+ posts timestamped head of yours, as well as the summary on your screen...

...you still completely fucking ignored it and proceeded to talk out your ass, while stating (and I quote) "I have no idea what the issue is"

For christ sakes, you even knew that you had no fucking idea what you were talking about. People that knowingly and willfully talk out their ass should not be paid attention to, ever. Nobody should ever listen to what you have to say because you knowingly and willfully make shit up.

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (4, Insightful)

Seriousity (1441391) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836178)

.... Dude, he made a simple mistake, just a normal human misunderstanding. and he admitted fault - this is commendable. Even if his original post was slightly inflammatory, it hardly warrants such a malicious outburst. You're either trolling or incredibly stressed/angry about something else, and venting on this poor guy - not cool.

I think you should go outside, sit in the sun and try to find something to smile about - those facial muscles probably need a workout!

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836752)

No, he should track down "koreaman" on Facebook, and force him to join the group "clueless posters". THAT'll teach him.

Re:Wait.. WHAT? (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836802)

I would quit...

but then I'd have to start buying birthday cards again. It's finally socially acceptable for me to put in the actual amount of effort I feel is appropriate to celebrate the day someone came out of someone else, and I'm not throwing that away without a damn good reason.

But it's so brilliant! (5, Insightful)

Draconi (38078) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835498)

I swear this is the standard response of any designer confronted, suddenly, with gaps in their thinking. "It can't be a serious problem, there is a workaround!"

Re:But it's so brilliant! (1, Funny)

Asic Eng (193332) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835636)

Well it definitely isn't their problem. If the TSA would actually be retarded enough to detain a person merely because they have been added to a facebook group (and I'm not saying that's unlikely) - well that would be the TSAs fault. It would also be the fault of the politicians which allow to operate the TSA as it does. And of course that means it would b the fault of the citizens of the US who are willing to put up with that shit.

Re:But it's so brilliant! (1)

EasyTarget (43516) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835758)

None of which helps when you are sitting locked in a little room and a big aggressive bloke has just laid a pair of rubber gloves on the table.

Re:But it's so brilliant! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835958)

@EasyTarget Especially when you're a 12 year old boy!

Re:But it's so brilliant! (1)

residieu (577863) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835884)

The TSA would probably detain you if a "Terrorist" facebook group had a member with the same name as you.

NAMBLA (5, Funny)

niteice (793961) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835514)

What's wrong with the National Association of Marlon Brando Look-Alikes?

Re:NAMBLA (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835714)

They all will face lawsuits for violating Marlon Brando's copyright on his look.

Re:NAMBLA (1)

daremonai (859175) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835882)

Didn't you ever see Brando in his later years? He made the fat Elvis look like the skinny Elvis.

Re:NAMBLA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836060)

They are a bunch of fucking drunks. Very bad for your image.

*sniff* I still do not understand why they would not let me join. I could have been somebody.

Re:NAMBLA (3, Funny)

dpilot (134227) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836316)

I was all ready to make some post about NAMBLA being a right-wing boogieman. But first I decided to check Snopes and Wikipedia. Sometimes I guess truth really is stranger than fiction - including conspiracy theories.

marlon Brando? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835518)

Nothing wrong with looking like Marlon Brando, maybe it's the north American part that upset him?

Non-issue (1)

schmidt349 (690948) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835520)

Why is this an issue? Non-friends can't add you to groups at all, you can withdraw from any group ad libitum, and you can block obnoxious misbehaving friends who don't stop doing dumb shit to you.

Re:Non-issue (5, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835642)

Because in the meantime if you haven't mastered Facebook's privacy settings a stranger might think you actually belong to those groups. Which isn't a problem until said stranger is in the position of offering or not offering you a job. Or deciding whether to do a more thorough investigation prior to a lawsuit or charges being filed.

Re:Non-issue (2, Insightful)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835650)

Why worry about why? When you say it's a non issue, you're factually entirely wrong. It's an issue to them and their request is a relatively simple one ... allow a preference to disallow friends to make you join groups.

Re:Non-issue (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835802)

I'd have a different request. Remove the "feature" that lets friends automatically put you in groups and replace it with the standard invite scheme. If they really want they can add a preference (defaulting to off) to automatically accept these invites.

Re:Non-issue (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835716)

Yeah, no need to fix the lock; you can totally call the cops on any burglar who gets into your home. Every time.

Re:Non-issue (2, Insightful)

Wooky_linuxer (685371) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835746)

I do have an account af Facebook but I really don't use it much. But if is is like anything round here, there may be lots of people who have lots of friends that they don't really know - I for sure know I have an awful lot of friends requests from people I've never seen. It is quite hard if you have a thousand of friends to track them all. So you go to sleep one night and the next morning you wake up to find out you've been added to a hate-speech, or a pro-taleban group, a neo-nazi group (which is actually a criminal offense in some countries) or something like that. It is an inherently flawed concept. Of course you may always argue you never actually joined that group, but we live in a world where appearances count more than evidence.

Re:Non-issue? - bull (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836376)

In what insane world is it acceptable design to let _someone else_ add you to groups without your consent?

Re:Non-issue (1)

falsified (638041) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836626)

It's an issue because most people don't watch their Facebook accounts like a hawk. I don't have any idea what this new feature even is beyond this summary, nor how to find it. Someone could do this to me and I wouldn't know for a week or more. More plainly, this feature sounds absolutely useless and I can't understand why they would change it from the previous Facebook Groups system. Why would having OTHER PEOPLE tell the world what affiliations I have be useful? You may as well make my Facebook info page be editable.

Great... (3, Funny)

Jaktar (975138) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835526)

I used to only have one friend, my mother. To prevent being added to a bad group I had to unfriend her. Now she's yelling at me to come up out of the basement and explain myself...

JEWS CONTROL THE MEDIA & PALESTINE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835528)

What if your friend puts you in a group that says that the Jews control the media and the Jewish Media destroys your life, like Israel destroys the lives of Palestinians?

Re:JEWS CONTROL THE MEDIA & PALESTINE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835868)

What if your friend puts you in a group that says that the Jews control the media and the Jewish Media destroys your life, like Israel destroys the lives of Palestinians?

What if there actually was a sovereign nation named Palestine? Then, what if Palestine sat directly on top of Judea? Then, what if a bunch of fucking assholes enslaved the Jews, and a bunch of fucking Turks came down and started worshiping a false prophet? Then, what if some German asshole tried to commit genocide on the Jews? Then, what if the Americans came to Europe to kick the fucking shit out of the Europeans? Then, what if the Americans found out what Germany was trying to do? Then, what if the Americans forced the creation of Israel and gave back a small piece of Judea to the rightful caretakers, the Jews? Then, what if a bunch of terrorists started crying and saying they were going to do the same as Germany did to the Jews? Then, what if the Americans sold nuclear bombs to Israel so they could protect themselves from the constant threat of barbaric terrorists? Then, what if a bunch of fundamentalist extremist false prophet worshipers overthrew Iran? Then, what if the satanic Khomeini and batshit insane Ahmadinejad said they were going to make nuclear bombs themselves and deploy them on Israel?

Yeah. Sorry. No such country as Palestine. Never was. Never will be. Oh and btw hiring terrorist thugs is not a government. Seriously, just go rape a 9yo girl or fuck a camel (both acceptable practices in the Koran).

Re:JEWS CONTROL THE MEDIA & PALESTINE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836512)

Mod parent up, please

Palestine is where Jews commit Genocide (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836546)

Palestine is the name of the country where Jews murder, imprison and steal land from it's rightful owners. It's the name of the country where Jew rats forbid drilling for water while they (in typical Jewish style) steal the water from it's rightful owners.

Palestine is the name of the country where the scheming Jew demonstrates his true nature.

Re:Palestine is where Jews commit Genocide (1)

Lion XL (1849898) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836810)

OK your an asshole too, see comment below.....

Re:JEWS CONTROL THE MEDIA & PALESTINE (1)

Lion XL (1849898) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836702)

Your an asshole, the Koran says no such thing. If you are going asinine statements at least base it on current propaganda and foolishness. Lets not lose sight of the fact that religious zealots exist in ALL religions. Did you forget the crusades? Sounds like that was a form of JIHAD, if you ask me. Nazi's used religion and beliefs to go to war against Hebrews. Shit the Hebrews used religion to go to war against themselves (yes, Jesus was a born Jewish, so yes they had a problem with themselves!).

I don't know if you ever met true fundamentalist Muslims, they are nothing like what is portrayed in the media. If most people that claim to be Muslims, or even claim to be of other religions followed the true path, this world would be a much better place. Too bad most religious zealots usually find one aspect of the "Bible/Koran/Torah/etc" , twist it out of context and off they go.....

Basing your opinions on propaganda or public furor is just plain stupid. If your not going to read the Koran, at least read up on the Koran or anything for that manner before talking out your ass.

In Soviet Russia... (2, Funny)

Jon Abbott (723) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835538)

Facebook Groups subscribe you!

Re:In Soviet Russia... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835872)

That would be funny if it wasn't true. :(

but (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835540)

but what if you were already in NAMBLA? you would be immune to this attack.

Re:but (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835836)

Although then you'd have a lot of other problems on your hands already.

Re:but (1)

Sechr Nibw (1278786) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836266)

How many problems does a 12 year old boy truly have?

What? (5, Insightful)

moeluv (1785142) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835548)

Why the hell would an option to do something like this even be added. I can see an invite system offering the ability to accept or deny an invite but being able to add someone automatically? Damn it was bad enough when my friends and I used to have junk mail wars and see who could get who on the worst mailing lists. This only ended when someone sent baby product catalogs to the wife of friend who was having trouble getting pregnant. I'm kind of surprised that guy survived. Perfect example of why this is a bad idea....someone always goes too far. Let's face it NAMBLA is pretty damn offensive.

Plausible deniability (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835558)

TSA: "I see you were once a member of KillAmericaNow on MyFacePlace"

You: Yeah, my kid brother added me to that on April Fools last year. I got him good though, I added him to "IHateWestPoint" the day before he wrote his Congressman asking for a nomination. He's now a freshman at State.

Border guard: Well, we can't have people from families like yours flying on airplanes, after all, the risk of you planting a bowling ball with the word "bomb" on it your neighbor's luggage is just too great. NO FLIGHT FOR YOU!

What kind of security is that? (2, Insightful)

jbarr (2233) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835560)

So "friends" can automatically add you to a group? That sounds like a HUGE security and privacy hole. I could certainly see friends "suggesting" groups to you to join, but to give them default ability to add you to a group is just WAY beyond belief.

Re:What kind of security is that? (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835672)

I can see how it would be irritating, but how is it a privacy or security problem? Doesn't it just mean that your account gets sent a lot of crap you don't care about?

Re:What kind of security is that? (0, Flamebait)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835704)

Your friends have too much power as it is, if you don't trust them. Being added to a group really means nothing in the context of privacy, it just means your name will (probably temporarily) appear on the list of members. If you can't trust your friends to not add you to groups you don't want to be in, you should not trust them with access to all the other info you have in Facebook.

Cliche (-1, Flamebait)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835566)

Wow. A story about how joining a social networking site actually turns you into a Pedophile. That sure is a new twist over the standard "Facebook is swarming with Pedos" line. I'm sure that Facebook will be promoting prostitution and terrorism by the end of the year as well, with at least one young life tragically ruined in an accident brought on by Facebook induced stupidity.... . Oh wait...

Re:Cliche (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835644)

Sorry, but did you even read past the mention of NAMBLA? This has nothing to do with pedophiles. This is an article about your friends being able to add you to groups without your consent.

It's all fun and games... (1)

Itesh (1901146) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835572)

until a 6'7" 300 pound man named Tiny is searching every crevice on your body looking for dope..

Re:It's all fun and games... (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836018)

unless you're in to that kind of thing ... just sayin

"...remove them as a friend..." (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835604)

Or remove yourself from Facebook. That'll work too, and relieve you of many other irritations.

In somewhat related news, guillotines ensure you won't have dandruff on your shoulders anymore.

I think a better analogy is snipping an unsightly hair out of your nose.

Re:"...remove them as a friend..." (1)

aardwolf64 (160070) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835818)

Remember kids, you can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but you can't pick your friend's nose.

Unless they have a Facebook account, that is...

The idea behind the policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33835654)

Even if you don't share Your personal details, your friends Will do it for you.
Every time your friend installs an application, he/she/it shares your personal data that is visible to your friend to the Application Overlords.
You can't even stop yourself from being tagged in photos. And good luck keeping your phone number safe, it's most likely out there already, tied to your profile and visible to all your friends. For shits and giggles, if you've got a fb-account, check: http://www.facebook.com/friends/edit/?sk=phonebook and see how many of those numbers you've added yourself.
Allowing people to add more metadata to your profile without your direct consent goes along the same line, to gather as much information as possible from everybody.

Re:The idea behind the policy (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835830)

Ah, now I start to get the picture. There's a big behind-the-scenes competition going on between Larry Page and Mark Zuckerberg, about who can collect more data about the people.

Joining and then leaving a group makes you immune? (3, Informative)

Zed Pobre (160035) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835660)

The oddity to this is that they already have an approval mechanism -- it's evident when they say that if you leave a group that someone has added you to, you cannot be re-added without authorization. That makes it pretty clear to me that it would be trivial to make that setting a default, but they don't want to.

Anyone care to start making a bot that automatically joins and then leaves groups as they are detected?

Uh oh, not everyone can be your friend (2, Interesting)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835674)

While I think facebook has a callous disregard for privacy in general, their suggestion that you simply un-friend someone who plops you into a group is spot-on.

Membership in a group really just means that your name will appear in their roster. No one will have additional access to your personal information. If you find it annoying that you have to remove yourself from a group you don't want to be in, just remove the friend who put you there along with it.

Facebook has long needed better "friend" vs. "acquaintance" handling; i.e. you can share more with your inner circle than with the person you met once and say Hi to about every 6 months. Maybe this ruffle will be the push they need to get cracking on that feature.

Re:Uh oh, not everyone can be your friend (1)

TexVex (669445) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835950)

While I think facebook has a callous disregard for privacy in general

Facebook advocating privacy would be like the Pork Council advocating vegetarianism.

Re:Uh oh, not everyone can be your friend (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836418)

Sure, but you don't see the Pork Council going around shooting vegetarians in the face.

The group could be a sting (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835692)

with ip tracking or have a new admin with ip log powers ie the feds.
If noted, you could face phone taps, sneak and peek searches, strange double bookings of a very on time tradesperson ect.
"Random" laptop cloning, extra searches and job applications just not getting to any of the stages they used to.

What the hell? It already had groups. (0, Redundant)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835722)

Facebook already had group pages. What’s this new groups thing?

And what the hell is with the bizarre claim that you can be added to a group without your consent? Stupidest idea ever!

CIA is smart enough? (1)

Deflatamouse (37653) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835744)

Hopefully CIA is intelligent enough to know the difference. Intelligence is their middle name right?

Re:CIA is smart enough? (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836212)

If the CIA is using this kind of 'evidence' against someone, you can damn well bet that they know exactly how ridiculous it is, they just don't care. Believe it or not, government agencies are made up of people that aren't completely retarded, they just don't have the same value system that you do. For them 'immoral but works' is a much preferable alternative to 'honest but fails', it's just part of the mindset required to work there effectively.

Thanks, another reason not to sign up (1)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835790)

I decided to be uncool and stay out of Facebook. I feel better and better about that decision every week from the articles I see. Now, why on earth would Facebook allow other people to subscribe YOU to a group?

me too! (3, Funny)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836550)

hey, we should, like, totally form a social group for people who aren't on facebook. Here, I'll pencil you in...

Woohoo! (3, Funny)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835822)

. . . I knew not having any friends would pay off in the long run! Suckers!

Re:Woohoo! (1)

Gohtar (1829140) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836100)

YEAH!!! High Five! Lets be friends!

Re:Woohoo! (1)

Krau Ming (1620473) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836502)

request declined.

Re:Woohoo! (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836598)

Facebook has nothing to do with having real friends.

This has to change (4, Insightful)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835832)

Facebook can't be this stupid.

A friend should be able to SUGGEST that you join a group-- TO YOU so you make the decision.

I wasn't aware this was even a feature of facebook. So there is no way to disable this short of unfriending the person? (and then it's still on my record as being part of that group anyway!)

Re:This has to change (1)

swordgeek (112599) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836176)

"Facebook can't be this stupid."

Yes they can. And they are - dumb like a fox.

This is another subtle erosion of privacy and control of your own information. They'll possibly scale it back, but then down the road, re-implement it.

All in the name of making a buck.

I'm sure I am not the only one (1)

assertation (1255714) | more than 3 years ago | (#33835848)

who enjoyed reading that Mark Zuckerberg got caught up in one of his own snares.

He and his people just don't want to accept the need to inform people before making decisions with their information.

Google Groups has same flaw (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836082)

The nearly obsolete google usenet reader has the same flaw: any group can sign you up for it. Spammers and religious fanatics are abusing this feature.

The real problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33836360)

I think the problem is FAR less Facebooks and FAR MORE the governments (NTSB, FBI, TSA, HS). What are they thinking using Facebook groups as "Reliable Intel" on terrorist organization membership. It makes about as much sense as arresting and charging everyone within a 20 mile radius of a crime who is wearing a white shirt because the person committing the crime was wearing a white shirt. You have no idea if the individual on facebook is the same one you are questioning/detaining!?

Careful (1)

Krau Ming (1620473) | more than 3 years ago | (#33836384)

it's all fun and games until someone gets sent to Guantanamo Bay.
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