I promised myself that today would be a “get a jump on Christmas shopping, clean the apartment and study for my accounting final” kind of day. Therefore hours at my computer and blogging was not necessarily intended to be in the picture. However, I simply couldn’t resist sharing this interesting (and entertainingly written) article. Enjoy.
Columnist Cory Doctorow describes how Facebook and other social networks have built-in self-destructs: They make it easy for you to be found by the people you’re looking to avoid (courtesy of Information Week).
If there was any doubt about Facebook’s lack of qualification to displace the Internet with a benevolent dictatorship/walled garden, it was removed when Facebook unveiled its new advertising campaign. Now, Facebook will allow its advertisers use the profile pictures of Facebook users to advertise their products, without permission or compensation. Even if you’re the kind of person who likes the sound of a benevolent dictatorship this clearly isn’t one.
Many of my colleagues wonder if Facebook can be redeemed by opening up the platform, letting anyone write any app for the service, easily exporting and importing their data, and so on (this is the kind of thing Google is doing with its OpenSocial Alliance). Perhaps if Facebook takes on some of the characteristics that made the Web work — openness, decentralization, standardization — it will become like the Web itself, but with the added pixie dust of “social,” the indefinable characteristic that makes Facebook into pure crack for a significant proportion of Internet users.