Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Facebook Messaging Blocks Links

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the deep-packets dept.

Facebook 143

jhigh writes "With the launch of the new Facebook messaging system designed to encourage account holders to utilize Facebook for all of their messaging needs, one would think that Facebook would recognize that it cannot continue to block content that it disagrees with. However, Wired reports that Facebook messaging, like the rest of the social networking application, continues to block links to torrents and other file sharing sites, even when users are sending messages via their facebook.com email address. Say what you want about the morality of using file sharing services to share copyrighted material, if Facebook wishes to become a player in the email market, they cannot block content."

cancel ×

143 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Nope. (4, Insightful)

Gothic_Walrus (692125) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292274)

if Facebook wishes to become a player in the email market, they cannot block content.

"Messaging" and "e-mail" are not the same thing. Problem solved?

Re:Nope. (3, Insightful)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293038)

More to the point, if people dont really care about those features, facebook can do whatever it wants. When it goes too far, it will become clear to them pretty quickly.

That's nothing (3, Insightful)

gmack (197796) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292276)

Blocking sites on copyright grounds is one thing but mis-declaring sites they have a personal beef with as the source of malicious installs is quite another.

You must be joking (2, Insightful)

turkeyfish (950384) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292836)

The entire Facebook and social networking business model is about penning users into a coral and preying upon their personal information for its marketing potential. Anyone who buys into the technology must is basically signing on to be fleeced as companies like Facebook, Myspace, etc. fleece them for what they are worth.

Facebook is the internet on training wheels, for those who need the assist.

Re:You must be joking (4, Insightful)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293052)

Facebook is the internet on training wheels, for those who need the assist.

Apparently it hasnt occured to you that some people actually find it USEFUL for keeping up with a large number of contacts.

Re:You must be joking (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34293598)

Actually I think he is saying it's the internet with training wheels (including contact management). If you're a big boy there are plenty of other ways to manage contacts that don't lock you in and misuse your data and your contacts data.

Re:You must be joking (2, Interesting)

Manos_Of_Fate (1092793) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293900)

If they exist, none of the people I know use them. A social network isn't much use to me if nobody I know uses it.

Re:You must be joking (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#34294144)

I do IT for a living, from helpdesk to routers to servers (Unix, Linux, Windows). I happen to also have a facebook account, since a lot of my friends and families do. Should I maybe spend the time to teach all of them a "better" way of keeping in touch? Or maybe not be such a curmudgeon and just use facebook like all my contacts?

Re:You must be joking (3, Insightful)

guruevi (827432) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293876)

An address book with a decent search engine works just as well. To keep in contact send them an e-mail. No need to outsource this to some company that may or may not abuse the information that is in their proprietary e-mail system.

Re:You must be joking (1)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 3 years ago | (#34294082)

Now be fair they might be one of those people that thinks keeping in contact means with someone is constituted by reading their impersonal broadcast messages periodically, and broadcasting his or her own impersonal broadcast messages that the someone may more may not read.

I really think these social networks are pushing society apart far more than drawing it together.

Re:You must be joking (1)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293772)

Yeah! Only stupid people would like something you don't like, right?

Re:That's nothing (1)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 3 years ago | (#34294154)

I really doubt this is to do with a "personal beef" against anything.

The first thing to realize is that anti-spam systems tend to look only at the domain name parts of links (there are a few exceptions). The reason is that URL paths are "free" whereas domain names are not.

If the pirate bay is being rejected as spammy, then the most likely explanation by far is not some Facebook corporate policy against piracy but that it's obtained a bad reputation, or possibly started showing up in an external urldomain blacklist like SURBL.

Why might Pirate Bay links appear in spam? I can think of a few reasons. One is that torrent sites are a great way to spread viruses. A lot of people who would never download and run a fake antivirus product or a free smilies package will happily download and run EXEs from torrent sites. There is an entire industry of people uploading viruses to these sites, in the past I've even read handy how-to guides that show you how to do this without any technical knowledge at all. They take you through obtaining a pay-per-install EXE from an affiliate operation, binding it to some warez, testing it against popular AV engines to ensure a miss, avoiding blocks by the torrent sites, etc. It's just a very effective way to infect people.

Of course once you have your virus onto a torrent site, how do you drive traffic? Well ... spam! Make your virus steal a Facebook session and spam friends with a link to the latest hot video game or movie (which naturally needs a codec install before playing), and you just built a self propagating botnet.

This sort of thing is common and I've seen it before in other large anti-spam operations. The alternative explanations fail basic reality checks .... Facebook is not, as far as anyone is aware, launching or preparing to launch an iTunes competitor and it's questionable whether they'd accept link blocking as part of such a deal anyway.

Re:That's nothing (4, Interesting)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 3 years ago | (#34294180)

Blocking sites on copyright grounds is one thing

Half of what my friends on Facebook post could be classified as 'copyright violations'. Maybe ISP's should block Facebook.

(you do want to play this game, Facebook, don't you?)

Facebook and Content Blocking (5, Interesting)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292296)

I don't engage in gross copyright infringement, nor do I share links that condone such behavior. That being said, I do offer legitimate torrents via Demonoid (legitetorrents is a crappy tracker). If I were to share a link to my legally shared content and I was blocked, or I couldn't share links to sites like Jamendo or ClearBits, I would very much be up in arms over this. Since I do not use FB messaging, I cannot say if such services are blocked.

The article is right, though. If FB wants to seriously become a player in the online messaging world, this content blocking garbage must stop.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (2, Insightful)

Cougar Town (1669754) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292444)

Online forums and chats have been blocking URLs for years. People simply get around it by changing characters, breaking the URL up with spaces, or other things. Each system of blocking always has some way to get around it that's quite easy for a human to still understand, even non-tech people. I don't like them doing this either, but it's never been a real problem for anyone who actually wants to pass a URL along on other sites.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (1)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292780)

Oh I know, and I tend to not use those sites anymore (and if I encounter one, I avoid it from then on, it's just not useful to me). Unfortunately, the rest of FB is still useful for me, so again, I will just not use FB Messaging. Simple.

That's all I was really commenting on. I'm tired of sites that try to make it hard to share links, especially when they already have designed themselves to make doing so ridiculously easy.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (2, Insightful)

Sepodati (746220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292460)

Facebook isn't under any kind of obligation to link to your torrent, legal or not. If you have legal content, you can link to your own SITE where users can find torrents for your content. This leaves the question of legality on you instead of Facebook. Honestly, I'd want that one level of separation if I was running a business, also.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (2, Insightful)

Sepodati (746220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292488)

Oh, and if your SITE primarily provides illegal (in the US) access to copyrighted files, I'd block links to that, also.

These people that think the Internet is lawless to US citizens and they can do whatever they want because they're not "depriving anyone of anything" need to come back to reality. Get copyright law removed and then I'll defend you, but otherwise you're breaking the law.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292584)

Why would I care about your rather fatuous opinion?

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292842)

a hyperlink is breaking the law? go fuck yourself.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34294112)

a hyperlink is breaking the law? go fuck yourself.

..and right there ladies and gentlemen is the problem.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34293094)

That's the most retarded fucking bit of illogic I've seen in weeks. Let's take a few more steps down this same line of thinking:

a) A site that contains no illegally hosted copyrighted material, yet that contains an index to the locations of both copyrighted and uncopyrighted material is illegal in your eyes.

b) Therefore, google is illegal as it is just such a site.

c) Internet connections are illegal as they give you access to google

d) Computers are illegal as they give you access to the Internet

e) Computer shops are illegal as they give you access to computers

f) Roads are illegal as they give you access to computer shops

g) Cars are illegal as they give you access to roads

Need I go on? This isn't obtuse - this is just the practical application of your retarded stance.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292656)

What the fuck does copyright law have to do with any of this? OP did not claim that Facebook was breaking any laws, he said he would choose not to use their service if they were blocking his legitimate links.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (2, Funny)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292762)

Yep, pretty much sums it up. Perhaps I should have used smaller sentences.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (1)

Sepodati (746220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293278)

No, you said "this content blocking garbage must stop", not that you would simply stop using the site or that it would become a useless service to you. You said that in a later comment, though, which I agree with.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (1)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293928)

No. I said I do not use FB messaging. Read my OP.

I did say that "this content blocking garbage must stop", which it should. I've been blocked to legitimate sites several times because FB thinks I don't want to go there because other people reported it as offensive.

Why don't you read what I wrote before commenting.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (2, Interesting)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292738)

No, Facebook isn't, but if they are providing a communications service, and I cannot use that service to link users to my content (legal or not), then it's a useless service.

I only brought in the legality of my torrents (which are fully 100% legal to share and distribute, as I created the content and licensed it thusly) because I felt a need to clarify that I do share links to content that has been licensed for legal sharing that happens to be torrented. If FB is breaking or blocking links to legit torrent sites (again, Jamendo (though they only provide torrents as an after thought now), Clearbits, and Vodo all offer legitimate torrented content that is freely distributable by all to name just a few) as well as illegitimate ones (99% of Demonoid content, The Pirate Bay, etc.) then the FB messaging service is useless to me.

Your other comment is laughable at best because you continue with whatever assumptions about what I was talking about that you present in the above replied-to comment that you made.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (1)

Sepodati (746220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293232)

There's a big difference between "this content blocking garbage must stop" and saying Facebook is a "useless service" to you. I agree that it probably is worthless to you. I wouldn't have even made my post if that was all you said. But instead, you said that something "must stop", like Facebook has some kind of obligation to support links to specific sites.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (1)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293950)

When a website makes it easy to link to any site you want, to start censoring the links its users share is counter-intuitive, is garbage, and must stop (or stop making link sharing so easy). They made themselves obligated to link to whatever site users posts when they made it dead easy to share links.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292922)

You're ignoring the obvious problem of "What if you don't have your own external website, and use a public tracker as your primary form of distribution?" there are plenty of smaller bands who only maintain a facebook fan page or myspace page, and who either don't know about other legalized torrent sites, or legitimately use Mega Upload or Rapid Share and are hurt by this.

Re:Facebook and Content Blocking (1)

Bobakitoo (1814374) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293490)

There is no legitimate use for Mega Upload, Rapid Share or other site of the like. It a money scam with riped off porn clip, low bitrate pop star mp3 and hollywood movie splited in 80 rar files as bait. Also wtf you saying about "legalized" torrent sites? There is noting illegale about them, there is noting to legalize.

Where did go the post as anonymous coward checkbox?

Demographics (5, Funny)

baresi (950718) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292298)

I am more and more convinced that the type of people who are on Facebook, let alone those who actually will use messages, are not the types to know or be savvy enough for torrents and similar activities

Re:Demographics (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292330)

I am more and more convinced that the type of people who are on Facebook, let alone those who actually will use messages, are not the types to know or be savvy enough for torrents and similar activities

I agree. It is becoming clear that FaceBook IS INDEED the new AOL.

Re:Demographics (2, Interesting)

kachakaach (1336273) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292340)

I am more and more convinced that the type of people who are on Facebook, let alone those who actually will use messages, are not the types to know or be savvy enough for torrents and similar activities

if you want to communicate with your relatives and certain friends, you end up with a Facebook and/or Twitter account, regardless of how "savvy" you are.

Re:Demographics (1)

MachDelta (704883) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292728)

I use a phone, usually. For calling and texting people, I mean. The things we used to use phones for, before this all-I-use-my-phone-for-is-facebook-and-twitter crap.
But i'm old school like that. :>

Re:Demographics (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292850)

Why? I don't think I know anyone who has a Facebook account but not email.

Re:Demographics (2, Insightful)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292888)

that wouldn't be surprising since your FB login is based upon your email address.

Re:Demographics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34293084)

I know plenty of people where I only know their Facebook account. Furthermore, I know plenty of people who check Facebook much more often than their email. Some I'm even more likely to get through to them by Facebook, even over phone calls/texts.

Re:Demographics (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292862)

I am more and more convinced that the type of people who are on Facebook, let alone those who actually will use messages, are not the types to know or be savvy enough for torrents and similar activities

if you want to communicate with your relatives and certain friends, you end up with a Facebook and/or Twitter account, regardless of how "savvy" you are.

Funny, about 10 years ago the same thing was being said about AOL/Instant Messenger accounts.

Re:Demographics (0)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292896)

Yeah, and your point is? The way we communicate with others hasn't changed (written or spoken word), just the medium.

Re:Demographics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34293122)

> if you want to communicate with your relatives and certain friends, you end up with a Facebook

That makes no sense. I communicate with relatives and friends online all the time, and I have no Facebook or Twitter account.

It may come as a surprise to some, but the internet is not yet synonymous with Facebook.

Re:Demographics (1)

MichaelKristopeit168 (1939486) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292514)

and what if companies like facebook in a position to censor communication about the topic did nothing to try and keep it that way... would the people who are on facebook remain the same "type of people"?

yeah, hilarious.

prejudice = funny.

slashdot = stagnated.

Unfriending Zuckerberg Now (4, Funny)

billstewart (78916) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292306)

He was a fun guy when he was a kid, but he's gotten to be really annoying as he's gotten older...

Re:Unfriending Zuckerberg Now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292998)

He was a fun guy when he was a kid, but he's gotten to be really annoying as he's gotten older...

You mean he tweets now about every stupid little thing?

"Say what you want" (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292316)

Say what you want about the morality of using file sharing services to share copyrighted material, if Facebook wishes to become a player in the email market, they cannot block content.

I don't know that Facebook's messaging is ultimately going to be successful, because it's attempting to compete (despite what it says) with well-established and well-used tools like email and text messaging - but I doubt that blocking links to file-sharing sites is going to have an impact on its fate.

I'm sure someone's going to make the "slippery slope" argument somewhere in this discussion, although with one data point that's hard to support.

Re:"Say what you want" (0, Offtopic)

jmottram08 (1886654) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292364)

2 data points now.

Good email systems blocks content (0)

mozumder (178398) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292362)

And that includes spam.

This is nothing new.

Re:Good email systems blocks content (4, Insightful)

Firehed (942385) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292402)

Good email systems *allow* you to block content. Big difference.

Re:Good email systems blocks content (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292502)

and most spam filters simply dump to a folder and never actully delete messages for you.

Re:Good email systems blocks content (5, Funny)

mozumder (178398) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292776)

A BETTER email system does not place the burden upon you to decide what to block. It removes that choice from you, freeing up your time and resources.

This system is great - it takes known spam links, and blocks the SENDER from sending it.

Don't have to fish around spam folders wondering if you've ever missed a blocked email, because, you never got it in the first place.

This places the burden on the few sender, not the millions of receivers.

You really need to limit freedom to make it better. Remember, "choice" is a actually a cost. Each additional degree of freedom added to any system is one more bit of complexity, limiting its usefulness. The more complex you make a system, the less successful people are at using it.

It is why the iPod, and Facebook (its simplicity compared to myspace) dominates the market.

If you give people less freedom, they will be happier, since their main concern is what they practically do, not what they could theoretically do.

Re:Good email systems blocks content (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34293034)

I certainly hope you just forgot the sarcasm tags

Re:Good email systems blocks content (1)

asdfghjklqwertyuiop (649296) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293440)

Uh... no. You're wrong except for the part about unwanted messages not being delivered in the first place being better than just delievered to a special place. I've been doing that with plain old SMTP for years though.

Re:Good email systems blocks content (1)

stms (1132653) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292512)

The difference is generally speaking email systems don't block spam they just filter it and put it in a special folder. Not only that but spam filtering is something that users want and not something serving the agenda of the email provider.

How I Learned to Start Thinking and Hate the Jews (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292372)

There are two types of people in the world: people who think there are two types of people in the world and people who don’t. I’m among the first type and I think the world is divided into people who recognize the Jewish problem and people who don’t.

In other words, the world is divided into smart people and dumb people. If you’ve got an IQ of 80, have difficulty operating a can-opener, and recognize the Jewish problem, you’re smart. If you’ve got an IQ of 180, have already won a couple of Nobel Prizes, and don’t recognize the Jewish problem, you’re dumb.

I’ve been dumb for most of my life: it took me a long time to recognize the Jewish problem. I didn’t think for myself, I just accepted the propaganda and conformed to the consensus. Jews are good people. Only bad people criticize Jews. Jews good. Anti-Semites bad. But then, very slowly, I started to see the light.

Recognizing Jewish hypocrisy was the first big step. I was reading an article by someone called Rabbi Julia Neuberger, a prominent British liberal. I didn’t like liberals then, so I didn’t like her for that (and because her voice and manner had always grated on me), but her Jewishness wasn’t something I particularly noticed. But as I read the article I came across something that didn’t strike me as very liberal: she expressed concern about Jews marrying Gentiles, because this threatened the survival of the Jewish people.

That made me sit up and think. Hold on, I thought, I know this woman sits on all sorts of “multi-cultural” committees and is constantly being invited onto TV and radio to yap about the joys of diversity and the evils of racism. She’s all in favor of mass immigration and there’s no way she’s worried about Whites marrying non-Whites, because “Race is Just a Social Construct” and “We’re All the Same Under the Skin”. She’s a liberal and she thinks that race-mixing is good and healthy and Holy. Yet this same woman is worried about Jews marrying Gentiles. Small contradiction there, n'est ce-pas?

Well, no. Big contradiction. She obviously didn’t apply the same rules to everyone else as she applied to her own people, the Jews. She was, in short, a hypocrite. But not just that – she was a Jewish hypocrite. And that’s a big step for a brainwashed White to take: not just thinking in a negative way about a Jew, but thinking in a negative way about a Jew because of her Jewishness.

After that, I slowly started to see the world in a different way. Or to be more precise: I started to see the world. I started to see what had always been there: the massive over-representation of Jews in politics and the media. And I started to notice that a lot of those Jews – like Rabbi Julia Neuberger, in fact – gave me the creeps. There was something slimy and oily and flesh-crawling about them. And it wasn’t just me, either: other Gentiles seemed to feel it too.

Politicians often attract nicknames based on some outstanding aspect of their character or behavior. Margaret Thatcher was “The Iron Lady”. Ronald Reagan was “Teflon Ron”. Bill Clinton was “Slick Willy”. But these are Gentile politicians and their nicknames are at least half-affectionate. Jewish politicians seem to attract a different kind of nickname. In Britain, Gerald Kaufman, bald, homosexual Member of Parliament for Manchester Gorton, is nicknamed “Hannibal Lecter”. Peter Mandelson, now Britain’s Euro-Commissioner and Tony Blair’s suspected former lover, is “The Prince of Darkness”. Michael Howard (né Hecht), the leader of the British Conservative Party, is “Dracula”.

When I noticed this kind of thing, I started to ask questions. What was going on here? Why did Jews attract nicknames like that? And why had Gentiles reacted to them like that not just now, but a long way into the past? Shakespeare seems to have felt the same kind of repulsion when he created the vengeful lawyer Shylock, and Dickens when he created the parasitic master-thief Fagin. Classic “anti-Semitic” stereotypes, but I knew that stereotypes aren’t always wrong. If anti-Semitic stereotypes aren’t always wrong, then there’s an obvious conclusion: neither is anti-Semitism. Gentiles are sometimes right to dislike and distrust Jews.

After all, at the same time I was noticing something else: the massive over-representation of Jews, not just among politicians and journalists, but among crooked businessmen too. In fact, among very, very crooked businessmen, the ones responsible for really big frauds at Gentile expense. Men like Robert Maxwell (né Hoch), Ivan “Greed is Good” Boesky, and Michael Milken. And, on a slightly lesser scale, Ernest Saunders, who finagled an early release from prison because he was coming down with Alzheimer’s, that well-known incurable brain disease from which no-one ever recovers. Only Saunders managed to confound medical science and recover from it.

Slimy. Hypocritical. Crooked. In a word: Jewish. But I didn’t take the final step, the step to full recognition of the Jewish problem, until I watched the reaction to Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ. I’m not a Christian and I have little sympathy with modern Christianity, but I had a lot of sympathy for Mel Gibson as I watched the hysterical campaign against him. The hysterical, well-organized, international campaign by the slimy, hypocritical, crooked Jew Abe Foxman, Head of the Anti-Defamation League, and his fellow slimy, hypocritical, crooked Jews around the world. They didn’t like something and they were moving heaven and earth to get it stopped.

And what was it they didn’t like? A movie about an event at the heart of European art, literature, and culture: the crucifixion of Christ. So here was another obvious conclusion: Jews hate European art, literature, and culture. In other words, Jews hate White civilization and the White race who created it.

After that, it all fell into place. I finally recognized that Jews weren’t just slimy, hypocritical, and crooked, but actively dangerous too. If I thought of something harmful to White civilization and the survival of the White race – mass immigration, feminism, multi-culturalism, anti-racism, gay rights – I realized that Jews were behind it, were promoting it through their control of the media, and had been doing so for decades.

Finally, I had seen the light. Finally, I had gotten smart and recognized the Jewish problem, the problem that even dumb Gentiles subconsciously recognize when they give nicknames like “Hannibal Lecter” and “Prince of Darkness” and “Dracula” to Jewish politicians. Jews really do want to eat us, and steal our souls, and suck our blood, and it’s about time we started firing a few silver bullets.

of course they can block content! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292374)

"if Facebook wishes to become a player in the email market, they cannot block content"

Do you honestly think most people care? If they cared about closed and controlled communications they wouldn't be using Facebook in the first place.

This is something approximately 15 geeks care about, and of those, 14 are not even using Facebook. FB might or might not succeed, but censoring emails will not be a factor either way.

eh (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292432)

those '15' geeks have much more activity than anyone else in the internet/web, and you can be rest assured that anything they are annoyed with will be talked by a lot of people, through communities, forums and so on. that is excluding the geeks who are actually publishing stuff, or leading communities, blogging, or doing any other thing.

Re:eh (1)

Sepodati (746220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292562)

LOL. really? You think the geeks talking about this will in any way compare the traffic about Glee, football or life in general?

Re:eh (2, Interesting)

unity100 (970058) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292758)

it does. it affects a lot of things. simplest of that, has been the case of firefox vs ie fight. firefox started from nothing. ie had everything. billions of people were being pushed ie through windows worldwide, even to the extent of thinking that it was 'internet'. (really, even i had seen a lot of people in my locale, who thought internet was ie - imagine - when the browser didnt fire up, but their messengers were on, they would say 'internet' was down). there wasnt any laws rules and regulations to prevent what was happening.

then, hundreds of millions of geeks started talking about it, posting about it, encouraging people on the net, friends, relatives to use it, putting download links to their pages, this that. that not only increased ff usage, but also helped bring it up to consumer groups' agenda and legislators' agenda, and effected an awareness and even led to eu regulation.

and see, here we are today, with ie waning, firefox increasing, even having opened the way for other browsers like chrome.

considering the developments around chrome, chrome os, and other google moves, this long chain of events may lead to even quite unexpected results in other areas.

so yes, it can happen. depends on how much importance these internet-wise active people give to something.

Re:of course they can block content! (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293310)

This is something approximately 15 geeks care about

I suspect that you vastly underestimate the popularity of casual file sharing.

They are mining messages for data/profit (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292394)

For facebook to alter the data in emails shows they are actually looking at the email. Not just for links they don't like but for any kind of data that they can use or sell. I would go as far to mention they are mining other social networks and creating a map of people's personal lives. People mindlessly give their personal data away for free and facebook turns around and sells it to any and everyone. Who needs identity theft when you can give away all your personal info on facebook.

Another way to look at this is facebook doesn't know that any of this data is real although it is assumed to be real. Putting false information is easy with this system and so is sending fake messages. The new age of spambook is upon us. Click in order to share your information.

Re:They are mining messages for data/profit (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293112)

Not just for links they don't like but for any kind of data that they can use or sell

Whether or not thats true, its pure speculation, and a hell of a reach. It is trivial (in forums for example) to set up filters that scan content as they are posted and automatically perform replacements-- I created such a filter once on a bbs. Doesnt mean the data GOES anywhere besides the bbs, it just gets processed prior to posting.

The fact that you get modded interesting is a little disturbing-- "interesting" for wild speculation and paranoia?

Re:They are mining messages for data/profit (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34294088)

Well google has lots of my info, and i really wish i could "tag" places on maps. so that searches like "work to grocery store to home" would work. Or be able to store 2-3 different routes for any starting and ending point combination in google, and do "target on my way home from work", "bank on the way to grandmas", etc.

I'd happily trade some more info to google(i use gmail, reader, search, youtube, already)to get better routing for new places on maps.

Cuts the other way too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292420)

Imagine law-enforcement officials exchanging torrent links over Facebook for an investigation, and Facebook is blocking those links? What is Facebook doing in this case, *protecting* the torrent sites from law-enforcement?

Users have no credibility in protesting any more (5, Insightful)

Fractal Dice (696349) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292422)

Facebook, you shall not cross this line! No this line. Not this line. Wait ... ok, now don't cross this line.

Sorry, but I have a hard time seeing complaints about facebook as credible any more - surely by this point they've already driven away everyone who really cares about these sorts of things.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (3, Insightful)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292540)

Sorry, but I have a hard time seeing complaints about facebook as credible any more - surely by this point they've already driven away everyone who really cares about these sorts of things.

That's like saying that the people bitching about the TSA's hobsian choice between nudie photos or a rub-and-tug have no credibility because the TSA's been ratcheting up the crazy for almost a decade now and if they aren't taking the train they deserve what they get. Because of the network effect, facebook is the only practical game in town for a lot of people who want that kind of service.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (2, Informative)

Unkl_Shvelven (1002053) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292878)

The phrase you are looking for is Morton's Fork [wikipedia.org] : a choice between two equally unpleasant alternatives. A Hobson's Choice [wikipedia.org] (not "Hobsian" as you say above) is a "take-it-or-leave-it" option: it would be a Hobson's choice if you phrased it "the TSA's Hobson's choice between going through security theater and not flying".

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292976)

Thanks dude. Although Hobbseian Choice might have been a better phrase even if it is a neologism - since Thomas Hobbes believed that abuse of power by the state (TSA in this case) was just an inevitable part of the price for the social contract of government.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292580)

I'm going to be honest, I've had some friends where, because they don't have Facebook, we never talk anymore. I don't have the time or inclination to go out of my way to make contact with people who make it more difficult for me than I'm used to. *shrug* To a great extent, Facebook reminds me to be somewhat social, despite how busy I generally am. If you're not in my list, I'll just be one of those "hey, i haven't seen that guy in three years, what happened" guys. And you know what? I'm not going to apologize for it. If you want to give Facebook false information so the terminators kill the wrong guy, whatever. ..but don't just not have an account. Your nonconformity will count against you, particularly when it comes to people like me.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (3, Insightful)

MaskedSlacker (911878) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292792)

The mistake you make is thinking that the GP wants to keep in touch with people like you.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (0, Troll)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292992)

The mistake you make is thinking that the GP wants to keep in touch with people like you.

You are totally right. But the AC's opinion is equally valid and, unfortunately, far more common and he doesn't deserve to be rated "troll" for it - it is pretty much a fact of modern life.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

vegiVamp (518171) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293304)

It being a fact of modern life doesn't excuse it. If you can't be bothered to talk to friends offline, then maybe you don't really know what friends are.

I occasionally neglect my offline contacts too, I'm not innocent. But as soon as I realise that I've been doing that, I'll make sure to poke them and catch up. These are people I've shared important parts of my life with, and I'm not about to throw them out like garbage.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293530)

If you can't be bothered to talk to friends offline, then maybe you don't really know what friends are.

How would you talk to friends in person without abandoning all your friends in favor of new friends every time you follow the jobs to another state? Or are you defining "offline" to include the telephone? Or are you recommending the postal service? Or what am I failing to think of?

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

vegiVamp (518171) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293722)

I believe we have a misunderstanding as to what constitutes a friend, as opposed to an acquaintance.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

Manos_Of_Fate (1092793) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293968)

Now you're just quibbling over terminology. Whatever you'd like to call them, I have people I'd like to keep tabs on without having to make 100 phone calls a month. I can keep up with what my cousins and other extended family members are doing, and see how old friends from high school and college are doing with minimal time investment. If I didn't have Facebook, I just wouldn't be able to keep up with most of these people.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

vegiVamp (518171) | more than 3 years ago | (#34294096)

Yes, and your life would be how much worse for it, exactly ?

More interestingly, how much time would you win for doing other, possibly more useful or interesting things ?

The difference between a friend and an acquaintance isn't quibbling over terminology, either, by the way. If you don't realise that, I pity you.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

Manos_Of_Fate (1092793) | more than 3 years ago | (#34294118)

Just because you don't place value on social interactions with people you don't see on a regular basis, doesn't mean nobody else does.

Re:Users have no credibility in protesting any mor (1)

metrometro (1092237) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293190)

What makes you think it's not a sliding scale? The value of Facebook changes over time, while the deterrents to using it - namely that people hate or don't trust Facebook Inc. - also change over time. It's an unstable system, as the value is created by the users, and as users bail, that value can fall apart pretty quick. And I've got 100 shares of Friendster to prove it.

Didn't hurt the iPhone (1)

Trufagus (1803250) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292452)

At least facebook seems to be blocking content based on a clear set of criteria. It's not as if they are blocking all links to Google services just because they don't like Google.

I'm sure there were many articles declaring that Apple would have to stop blocking Apps if they wanted the iPhone to succeed but user's didn't care. And no, the recent changes in the App Store rules (and their allowing of Google Voice) were not because of pressure from users - they were from F.C.C. pressure.

So, we here on /. might care about FB blocking content, but I doubt their users will care.

It's a fair warning (0)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292474)

I generally know not to trust the technical savvy, honesty or intelligence of anyone who uses a yahoo.com address. I guess I can add facebook to the list.

Wow. You're a complete and utter brand whore. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292920)

So if i wanted to communicate through any of my 20 yahoo accounts... I'm fucking retarded. If I use any of my 5 gmail accounts you will question nothing? What if I use my aol accounts? Or something you've never heard of.

I won't judge you on your email address, I will judge you on your ideas. And your ideas tell me that you're either intellectually inferior or that you're 12 years old an worried about appearing uncool. I'm sorry, I repeat myself.

It's a fucking email address. It is not you. Grow up, kid.

Use bit.ly (3, Insightful)

genealotech (1854354) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292480)

If you have a link that gets blocked by Facebook, convert the link to a bit.ly link. Then it will work.

Re:Use bit.ly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292516)

Right until they begin following URL-shortener links to check the real destination.

4shared.com is included (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292506)

There's nothing inherently copyrighted about 4shared, and they block that too.

Re:4shared.com is included (1)

Sepodati (746220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292616)

Never heard of the site before and it took me less than a minute to download a copyrighted music file from that site. Er, I mean, my friend did that. my foreign friend, not in the US.

Not new (1)

frozentier (1542099) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292520)

You haven't been able to send torrent links for a LONG time now, at least since the first part of this year.

op-ed (2, Funny)

JPickard (727790) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292536)

Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man

Sheeple (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292618)

get what they deserve.

Common Carrier rules.... (2, Insightful)

umask077 (122989) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292726)

So I worked many years ago for a USENet provider. We of course carried all groups. Everyone knew what was in USENet ad suffice to say discussion about what to do about things like the kiddie porn came up. The decision was made to shut down those groups. I mean it make's sense. Cut off access to those groups and stem the flow somewhat. Within 2 days of shutting the groups down we received a call from the FBI threatening to shut us down. They said by censoring anything we become responsible for ALL content on our systems.

It seems to me that Facebook should be held to the same rules. If they censor one thing they must censor it all

Now on a positive note the USENet providers legal department found out that what really happened was that we shut down and FBI sting. Once we knew that we were able to facilitate their investigation but still. The common carrier laws should apply to everyone or no one. If I have a vote, it's everyone.

Announces F2F & FBShare (1)

Rivalz (1431453) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292730)

Now with our omg Face 2 Face transfer protocol that instead of peers uses faces to share torrents facebook allows users to share copyrighted content so long as they subscribe to facebook premium ultra where users let facebook setup a live streaming video webcam impanted in each users eyesockets. This lets friends keep up to the second in some other person's live, and also allows direct advertisement streaming straight to the part of the brain that controls compulsive shopping.

Facebook Share allows users to share any file or document so long as the user transfers all rights to the file to facebook and agrees to pay for access.

Who cares... (1)

seanvaandering (604658) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292782)

... just hide your links in a TinyURL and proceed as normal. What's the big deal?

Facebook are only protecting their ass (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292812)

From the lawyers-happy groups known as RIAA and MPAA.

This isnt news! (1)

chucklebutte (921447) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292898)

Facebook for long time now has blocked links from "bad" sites like the pirate bay to "legit" sites like my chinese redirector co.cc or maybe its Korean? Who knows all I know is its blocked and thats lame! My hosting supplies me with this company, for free redirect and since FB is racists and hates Chinese I cant share my forums links on my facebook page, thanks a lot... =/

Virtually everything is copryrighted (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34292902)

Say what you want about the morality of using file sharing services to share copyrighted material, if Facebook wishes to become a player in the email market, they cannot block content.

They already are a player in the email market. Besides, they're trafficking copyrighted content constantly! As in, all the photos, messages, etc. written by users.

Re:Virtually everything is copryrighted (1)

toriver (11308) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293214)

Yeah, but they grant themselves a license to do so in the TOS... or rather the TOS say that you the copyright holder grants it to them of course.

wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34292904)

I'm so glad they are providing facebook email now, I've always wanted to get a censored email account. I'm so tired of using all the free uncensored ones like gmail & yahoo.

US Censorship (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34293072)

This issue is often overlooked when the issue of censorship is brought up:

While the Chinese (and alike) suffer from a limited for of government censorship of the Internet, Americans often suffer much heavier censorship, be it from corporations. (Whether it's their employer, campus or the current leading communication platform.)

Americans seem to have the idea that because it's corporations doing it, it's less evil than the government doing it. Or that since you can still curse the government, it's not "real" censorship.

In either case though, the end result is that your restricted in your freedom of expression beyond what your constitution requires.

what is the author smoking? (1)

alienzed (732782) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293160)

How in the world are you going to achieve security if you don't at least take some basic measures to protect your users. The internet should remain open but I applaud Facebook for protecting users who don't know well enough to protect themselves. I've been doing research recently into phishing attacks and it's as simple as getting any user to surf to a webpage that you point him to in order to gain complete control over their machine. The main counter argument anyway is that no one is forced to use facebook for their messaging needs, but given the amount of users already on facebook, it'll be rare to see people NOT use the service... this is a win-win for facebook and for users. Finally an organization is taking responsibility for protecting their users instead of expecting everybody to be a security and privacy expert.

Simple solution: (1, Interesting)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293184)

Don't use Facebook... They don't value your privacy rights, or even your free speech rights. To hell with them.

Re:Simple solution: (1)

Manos_Of_Fate (1092793) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293982)

Facebook isn't even vaguely covered by free speech. Just the government.

Centralization (3, Insightful)

sulfur (1008327) | more than 3 years ago | (#34293238)

I remember when people were concerned about their privacy and complained about Gmail mining their emails. Facebook will take it to a whole new level, complete with value-added features such as censorship. People have to understand that decentralization is the only way to go; putting all your eggs in one basket (facebook) will never lead to anything good.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?