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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, Insightful) by Sir Finkus on Sunday April 06 2014, @07:55PM

    by Sir Finkus (192) on Sunday April 06 2014, @07:55PM (#27152) Journal

    Is it really a perception problem when the perceptions are actually accurate? I never signed up for facebook because I knew its only purpose was to collect information on me. It seems like I'm perceiving things correctly.

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  • (Score: 3, Funny) by aristarchus on Sunday April 06 2014, @08:48PM

    by aristarchus (2645) on Sunday April 06 2014, @08:48PM (#27160) Journal

    All the worst "perception problems" are perceptions of things that are in fact true. This makes these problems much more difficult to deal with, since you have to, um, lie.

    To use cliche: "Do these pants make my butt look big?" Now there is a perception problem of the worst kind, exacerbated by the foreknowledge of the interrogator.

  • (Score: 5, Funny) by sjames on Sunday April 06 2014, @08:57PM

    by sjames (2882) on Sunday April 06 2014, @08:57PM (#27163) Journal

    In corporate America today, the greatest problem they face is consumers perceiving them accurately.

  • (Score: 2) by bucc5062 on Sunday April 06 2014, @09:04PM

    by bucc5062 (699) on Sunday April 06 2014, @09:04PM (#27166)

    When did that start? The original programming was just to help college kids "hook up" and share pictures of them being toasted at a frat party (I did not see the movie). At some point, before they went IPO there was a decision to shift for a social system to a information mining system.

    I kind of remember signing up late, but before it seemed like it was only interested in me as food.

    --
    The more things change, the more they look the same
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Ethanol-fueled on Sunday April 06 2014, @10:08PM

    by Ethanol-fueled (2792) on Sunday April 06 2014, @10:08PM (#27186) Homepage

    Spot-on. There's been a "perception problem" ever since The Social Network was released, and along with it the knowledge that Zuckerburg is a narcissistic douche. Then people realizing that you can get rejected or even fired from a job, or even arrested, just by posting shit on there. Now Zuckerburg is becoming involved with a pro-immigration political committee, and whether or not you disagree with more immigration, most do agree that business should stay the fuck out of politics because they believe our political system is broken thanks in no small part to those corporations. There is no good reason for most people to be on a social network now...

    " B-but muh keeping in t-touch with m-muh family..."

    Most of us did that back in the MySpace days, and didn't bother to lose their phone numbers and e-mail addresses. You know, for calling and instant-messaging your personal conversation that everybody else and their moms couldn't care less about? People who say it's about staying in touch are fooling only themselves, it's really about validation and voyeurism. It's about your neediness for attention and your unhealthy obsessions with others' lives. Something that used to be totally in your control, but as that control is being taken away from you in the form of poor privacy controls, you start to wonder how it's any better than doing things the old-fashioned way in real life. It takes a long time for a population to wake up, but I'm glad it's happening.

    • (Score: 4, Interesting) by frojack on Monday April 07 2014, @12:40AM

      by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 07 2014, @12:40AM (#27227) Journal

      People who say it's about staying in touch are fooling only themselves, it's really about validation and voyeurism. It's about your neediness for attention and your unhealthy obsessions with others' lives.

      It has very little to do with voyeurism or obsessions with other's lives.
      You've mistaken a symptom for the disease.

      Virtually every facebook user I know has no interest in anyone's life but their own, and only by feigning interest in others can they garner attention they so desperately need for themselves.

      Their existance is threatened if someone stops paying attention to them.

      The proof of this is that when my wife or I tell someone feigning interest in adding us as a facebook friend that we never have nor never will have a facebook account, all pretense of interest is dropped.

      As soon as it becomes patently clear we won't be pumping up their friends list, nor paying the least bit of attention to their vapid blather on their facebook page, they lose intrest.

      Without this artery of attention, their interest in anyone else disappears.

      --
      No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Common Joe on Monday April 07 2014, @10:47AM

        by Common Joe (33) Subscriber Badge <common.joe.0101NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday April 07 2014, @10:47AM (#27378) Journal

        Virtually every facebook user I know has no interest in anyone's life but their own, and only by feigning interest in others can they garner attention they so desperately need for themselves. Their existance is threatened if someone stops paying attention to them.

        The damndest thing is happening to me. I have a very minimal Facebook presence. (I think I've been on Facebook about 5 or so years and made about 15 or so comments.) As a matter of fact, I have almost no online presence at all. Things are changing, though. I need a job and every place I turn says "get online" and fill out the forms and every article I read says "Your chances are greater if you have an online presence". In other words, I have to pretend to be interested in online technology (by putting up a facade) so that others can feign interest in me so I can find a job. My existence and the existence of HR drones and recruiters are threatened if people aren't paying attention to one another. Yes, I'm using other things than Facebook to advertise myself but you get the point.

        But your main point still holds true. No one has a real interest in the other person. It's all there for show.