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Facebook Fury Only Grows and Grows

400,000,000 weak and weaker by the day.


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Fury at Facebook's predictable 'bait and switch' keeps on growing. There's now a worldwide movement to leave Facebook on 31 May, privacy pundits are growing increasingly disdainful of the site, and there's even a new web application that exposes what the 400,000,000 weak think they're still posting in private.

It's a wonder any grown adult didn't immediately see the rip-off for what it was. There's only one way to capitalise on a walled garden like that. And Facebook are finally making a rush for the finish line.

The ethics of founder Mark Zuckerberg haven't been exactly inspiring: the 'little shit' as he's been called in the media settled out of court for $65,000,000 to his former Harvard buddies who accused him of stealing their code. So much for what Zuckerberg wanted to describe as a 'minor misunderstanding'.

Singel

Wired's Ryan Singel has been especially cynical of Zuckerberg's crew. Singel participated in a radio programme about the Facebook backlash with Facebook's Tim Sparapani.

'While conceding some ground to critics of recent changes, Sparapani also defended Facebook, saying the company was dedicated to privacy despite its long march towards account defaults that push users to be more public and a privacy policy that is now longer than the US Constitution', he wrote.

Commenting on Facebook's promise of a new simplified privacy policy, Singel adds that 'the proposed changes are unlikely to reverse the company's December decision to make large portions of a user's profile into 'publicly available information' - which means even if you hide the fact you support a gun rights organisation in your profile settings, that's still findable online.'

Openbook

The new web application Openbook has to be one of the coolest going. Anyone can search for what the poor FB fools thought they were posting in private. And there are no hacks involved: it's all through Facebook's public API.

[ACP Web Services users can easily create a new service for this for extra fun: 'Openbook/youropenbook.org/?q='.]

ReclaimPrivacy.org, SaveFace

ReclaimPrivacy.org are offering a free open source plugin to counteract the Facebook 'bait and switch', as are Unentangle with their SaveFace.

Quit Facebook Day

31 May has been declared 'Quit Facebook Day' by QuitFacebookDay.com. 'For a lot of people, quitting Facebook revolves around privacy. This is a legitimate concern, but we also think the privacy issue is just the symptom of a larger set of issues', say site founders Joseph Dee and Matthew Milan.

Alternatives

And sure enough, there are Facebook alternatives popping up everywhere. But odds are they'll never eclipse or replace Facebook. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link - and Zuckerberg has 400,000,000 of them.

By posting Member Content to any part of the Web site, you automatically grant, and you represent and warrant that you have the right to grant, to Facebook an irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide licence (with the right to sublicence) to use, copy, perform, display, reformat, translate, excerpt (in whole or in part) and distribute such information and content and to prepare derivate works of, or incorporate into other works, such information and content, and to grant and authorise sublicences of the foregoing.
 - Facebook terms of service

See Also
The Technological: Do you have Facebook?
Rixstep Industry Watch: The Facebook Blowup
Rixstep Industry Watch: EU Parry FB Zuckerpunch
Rixstep Developers Workshop: Wash Yer Face. Book.
Rixstep Red Hat Diaries: What Happened to Facebook?
Rixstep Red Hat Diaries: Zuckerberg Doesn't Want Privacy
Rixstep Learning Curve: So much for anonymity these days'

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