There should be a drinking game that involves the words privacy and Facebook; and if there was such a game, players would be drunk within a matter of minutes.
I wrote a column about the newest feature in Facebook called “Instant personalization” and how the mob-like mentality user base is already protesting the newest features.
And as we’ve seen from past fumbles of new features on Facebook, like Beacon, it didn’t take long for a privacy scandal to break the blogosphere.
Users posted instructions on how to turn off ‘Instant personalization’ and some are considering leaving Facebook altogether.
There are reports that the code that developer use in Facebook can reveal every detail about their profile; Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s schedule was revealed by this security lapse. The New York Times even reports that Zuckerberg doesn’t care about the privacy issues facing his company.
Now the U.S. government is getting involved as Sen. Chuck Schumer is in talks with the company and asking the FTC to get involved as well.
What Facebook doesn’t understand is that people do care about their privacy online – the ones that don’t post their drunken-party photos in their profile. And navigating the privacy features on the website is not an easy task; it’s almost impossible to be 100% private on Facebook. Even if you set your profile to private, anyone can see your profile – through a network you joined or through friends that are friends with the private profile.
Facebook needs to understand that people still value their privacy and the company should listen to those demands or the company will be another social networking site where people leave in droves – like MySpace and Friendster.