Collateral Damage and Comedy

Since the recent changes at Facebook, many people have jumped on the deactivate or delete train. I have mentioned elsewhere before how I think the social network functions like the blob or the borg and traps you, so I find it kind of refreshing that some of the people who were on the fence are finally cutting ties to the thing. The thing I find hilarious about the final straw, is that for many people it was the service sharing data with Pandora.

The backlash from connecting to two other services seems negligible because less people know or care about them, but people’s music tastes are serious business. The trigger for exodus was not any of the previous privacy changes that basically said they own your soul because in those cases concerned users just elected to take down a couple of photos (which are probably still on a server somewhere). Even the changes that followed the Pandora issue, like the linking of pages based on interests, caused less of a ruckus. Instead of storming off in a huff there, users just didn’t link anything and let the page blank out.

The flames of anger died down on the more obnoxious changes faster. I guess that it just from people being used to it. But they are very upset if Mr. Advertisement knows they like that one song and may try to sell them something related. For once the partner involved is an entity they already trust with information about them and should be more inclined to be ok with. Still, I have seen more hate posts about that decision than anything else.

Serious business.

As Johnny Worthington points out, people tend to deal with privacy in terms of extremes. Not everyone sees all the levels presented by Facebook, which works to the company’s favor. They get the “open”-ness they want, and enough people are either left in the dark or too lazy to do anything about it. It makes me think of the Dilbert episode where they are trapped in the mall for similar reasons.

I’m fairly up and down about how I feel about the general privacy settings on facebook since I first joined the service back when it was exclusively a short list of college kids and very few people cared about it. It has not been the same place I joined for years. I’ll openly admit I joined the hater-train ages ago, but I did because it is chock full of folks I never liked/felt the need to tolerate that want to “friend” me and the UI is hideous.

I guess the lesson here is that tons of people aren’t bothered too much by how much information is floating around about them on the internet since they never see too much of it. It also does not seem to be a big deal if they only go to Facebook and their email inbox when they are online anyway.

But they’ll be damned if anyone other than their close friends finds out they like that silly pop song.