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posted by janrinok on Sunday April 06 2014, @07:04PM   Printer-friendly
from the trust-has-to-be-earned dept.

Selena Larson writes at ReadWrite that Facebook has a perception problem, which is largely driven by the fact it controls huge amounts of data and uses people as fodder for advertising and just can't shake its ultimately flawed nature and gain the trust of consumers.

"Perhaps the largest driver of skepticism towards Facebook is the level of control it gives users-which is arguably limited. Sure, you can edit your profile so other people can't see your personal information, but Facebook can, and it uses your data to serve advertisers says Larson. "Keep in mind: This is information you provided just once in the last 10 years-for instance, when you first registered your account and offered up your favorite movies, TV shows and books-is now given tangentially to advertisers or companies wanting a piece of your pocketbook."

Another thing people hate about Facebook is that when the time comes for someone to abandon the social network, whether over privacy concerns or frustration with the company, Facebook intentionally makes it hard to leave. "Even if you delete your account, your ghost remains. Your email address is still tied to a Facebook account and your face is still recognizably tagged as you, even if the account it's associated with has vanished." Even when you die, Facebook continues to make money off you.

Facebook has many exciting projects, but it won't have an audience left unless it addresses its perception problem says Larson. "Trust is paramount, especially on the Internet, and people need to know that Facebook is making things to improve the human experience, not just spending billions to make even more billions off our personal information," concludes Larson. "Prove to us you don't just care about money, Facebook, and perhaps we'll all realize how much you really have grown in the last 10 years."

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  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by VLM on Sunday April 06 2014, @07:15PM

    by VLM (445) on Sunday April 06 2014, @07:15PM (#27144)

    Nothing is ever really new, a bit over a decade ago we set up my mother in law with, I believe it was called, junomail, which was a totally free email service for modem users that tried to make money by sending spam. Being the little devil I am, or big devil, or whatever, I signed her up as being into pro wrestling and a whole bunch of random junk. They had a survey that made a federal census long form look petite. Nothing ever happened other than junomail going out of business.

    It may be there is little demand for this kind of info for most people. Don't just divide revenue by # victims to get value per person, it may be that peculiar condition XYZ (perhaps being rich?) is worth $75 and everyone else is worthless. Or maybe even a decade ago automatic BS detectors are pretty good (Hmm, retired female fan of pro-wrestling and star trek? BS. Or maybe I personally caused the downfall of the Sci Fi network)

    Or juno failed in the market but it was a great idea.

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  • (Score: 1) by Leebert on Monday April 07 2014, @02:09AM

    by Leebert (3511) on Monday April 07 2014, @02:09AM (#27255)

    Nothing ever happened other than junomail going out of business.

    Juno still exists. I cannot manage to get my parents to migrate off of it, no matter how hard I try.

  • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Monday April 07 2014, @03:50AM

    by Reziac (2489) on Monday April 07 2014, @03:50AM (#27283) Homepage

    I had Juno mail about a thousand years ago (and Juno does still exist) ... the trick was to admit to NO interests; then you got NO spam.

    Juno was successful enough that there were several copycat services. However, the whole thing lost relevance once net access became widespread and nearly every ISP offered email.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday April 07 2014, @11:37AM

      by VLM (445) on Monday April 07 2014, @11:37AM (#27392)

      "once net access became widespread"

      It was free. Completely. Not a penny. At least when she used it. Got an old PC and a modem, you're good.

      I agree its fairly pointless if you have inet access but she has no interest.

      • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Monday April 07 2014, @01:12PM

        by Reziac (2489) on Monday April 07 2014, @01:12PM (#27441) Homepage

        Yeah, I know people who still use it, because it's free and requires no more investment than their existing phone line and any crap computer. It works for basic email, well enough if that's all you need, and it takes little effort to learn to use.

        [goes off, looks at] I see it now has a webmail interface!

  • (Score: 1) by Open4D on Monday April 07 2014, @04:04PM

    by Open4D (371) on Monday April 07 2014, @04:04PM (#27589) Journal

    Nothing ever happened ...

    Damn, I was convinced your anecdote was going to finish in 2014 with Facebook mysteriously deciding to sign your mother-in-law up to some of their Pro Wrestling fan groups.