Share: Facebook Get’s Called Out Everywhere – Except Here …

June 29, 2010

German, British and Canadian Governments are monitoring Facebook’s assault of the general definition of privacy. Meanwhile the shameless free market fundamentalists who’ve wormed themselves into the American Government, in great numbers, are giving “favors” and trading players…

BERLIN, AP – Facebook still isn’t doing enough to protect users’ data, Germany’s consumer protection minister said Thursday, adding that she plans to give up her account.

The minister, Ilse Aigner, first raised concerns about Facebook two months ago, urging the network to upgrade its privacy settings.

Last week, in response to a backlash among users, Facebook announced that it was simplifying its privacy controls and applying them retroactively, so users can protect the status updates and photos they posted in the past.

Those changes were “a first step in the right direction, but I still have my doubts as to whether these improvements will really bring a true turning point,” Aigner said after meeting Richard Allan, Facebook’s director of European public policy.

Aigner said the meeting “unfortunately confirmed my skepticism.”

She said she plans to leave the network, but will remain in contact with Facebook managers and “will not rest until data protection is improved decisively.”

The changes so far aren’t enough “to protect the privacy of users and to comply with our German law, which has higher standards than elsewhere in the world and America,” Aigner added.

She complained that the network’s data protection system remains too complicated and geared toward opting out of sharing information rather than opting in.

Aigner has also harshly criticized Google Inc. for failing to respect German data protection regulations through its Street View mapping program.


Fedbook: Discussing Senator Schaumer’s Letter To Mark Zuckerberg

May 3, 2010

Two-weeks ago Facebook implemented some asinine changes in regards to sharing your privacy with their favorite corporate buddies. A behavior which continues to run along the sort of destructive path we’ve all come to expect from Facebook.

A month before this malarkey went down Facebook announced the planned change. Kim-Mai Cutler @ Venture Beat asked Barry Schnitt, Facebook’s director of communications and public policy, if there would be a way to opt-out of the new personal data-share plan. “No,” would be the indirect, but mostly direct answer.

Over the last couple years Facebook has been penalized by authorities of other countries for their policy behavior – but in the corporately hi-jacked USA, shit like this gets ignored all the time! Think Paypal.

OK if you haven’t taken some time in the last decade to get to know the shadiness that is Paypal/Ebay, then proceed with the basic summary here: In the EU, Paypal is held up to the authority of the banking standards which govern the region’s economy. What’s different between us and them?  In the US, Paypal isn’t held to the same “stringent” standards and practices which govern banks and other financial institutions. Paypal operates without the same SEC laws a bank like Chase, would be held to. Paypal is NOT FDIC insured so in other words, Paypal is an unregulated money philanderer. They’re not the high-end gigolos banks are, they’re just straight up whores for the money.

I’ve watched Paypal rip a small business off for $20,000 … putting the tiny operation out of business as it spun its little wheels using loans to try to recoup the cash Paypal unreasonably froze and fined. And who stepped in to help the small business owner? No one. That’s Paypal in America! And that shit happens every day, to more than one person at a time.

So how is Facebook like Paypal? Think of privacy as cash and there you have it.

Privacy is in fact, even more intrinsically valuable than cash and Facebook knows this. Facebook has taken personal privacy and turned it into any other commodity like crude oil, wheat, or gold. A Facebook account is no longer an innocent chat with mother, it’s a contribution to what the Facebook Brokerage will sell out on the commodities market.

Mark Zuckerberg, Commodity Trader: “Sally’s love of SAFEWAY brownies are for sale!!!!”
Assy McClinched, Commodity Buyer for CNN: “DAMN! That’s A GREAT price for that info about Sally, Mark! I’ll buy her account and add her to the share pool! Thanks!”

As you can you see, privacy, like money, actually needs protection. Educated alarmists are not just talking out of their butts. Facebook, like Paypal, are the unregulated ass-rapers of your checkbook and your privacy. And apathy … well apathy is the pegged dildo they do it with. Maybe you’ll care when it’s your turn.

So there are two points to today’s posting other than drawing whimsical comparisons and generating thought.

The first point is in the last few days Senator Schumer wrote Facebook and called Mark Zuckerberg out on the recent bullshit. Whether this is a publicity stunt or really will be a result of a true action, this is a good thing. It’s good because for once, a bad issue that’s been created by a large/greedy corporation who usually get’s the “hush-hush pass” from the press and bureaucracy, is being singled out! This shit is rare and good!

And then this brings me to the second reason for this posting… I have seen some dumb-dumbs out there comment on stories related to Schumer’s letter. Just reeeeeeeally fucking stupid comments. More ignorant opinions from ignorant people who don’t know wtf is really going on. Those muthafuckers take note: Ignorant opinions are not good for anyone. Ignorant opinions hurt the brains of people who’ve invested time into being educated about social issues because they, the reader who seeks solid/educated thought, just read what you wrote and it was soooo stupid it burned a hole in their brain. Ignorant opinions make apathetic ignoramuses even stupider by justifying their reasoning to not actually go fucking read up on the issue themselves, and just take the word from some other unread hayseed. Ignorant opinions and apathy are like an airborne diseases, they spread and infect easily.

Let’s try this: If you’re unread on a particular issue, then how can you really have a developed thought on it to share with anyone else? Stop peeing in our drinking water ok? There’s no shame in saying “Oh I’m not educated in that issue enough to have a valid opinion.” Ooor!!! Or just in keeping your under-developed thoughts to yourself and your mouth shut. No shame in that. Remember – ignorance is bad. Knowledge is good. They don’t teach that in kindergarten these days I guess.

Because I’m feeling frisky, I’ll break it down some more for those assholes with ignorance constantly spewing from their mouths like it was oil out of a broken oil platform in the Gulf. Assholes who make comments like, “Oh yea so let’s look into the Senator’s privacy records.”

THAT’S NOT THE FUCKING POINT AT THIS FUCKING MOMENT YOU FUCKING SPAZZ-BASKET. ONE ISSUE AT A TIME!!! PREFERABLY THE ONE THAT ACTUALLY COUNTS, FIRST!

Or blatantly half-witted comments like, “Why does the government have to get involved in this? Can’t they just mind their business for once?”

This tea party sounding ass-hatery; the declaration of anarchy or libertarian trendsetting needs to quit. You’re angry at the government, but not at the corporations who’ve infiltrated our government, education, and economy in a takeover? You’re mad at an irrelevant politician instead of the corporation that’s going to charge you your tax dollars to fight for your right in a court of law – when that same fucking corporation could’ve saved us all from spending the cash and just gone ahead with being ethical on their own in the first place?

It’s not government that’s the issue, it’s regulation. Too much regulation and you end up like North Korea. Too little regulation and you end up like the Native Americans when Christopher Colombus raped and murdered their wives in front of them. So to say you’re for “no regulation” makes you look like a greedy fuck who wants the rules removed so you can ass-rape to your heart’s content, or it makes you look especially stupid. And vice versa.

You don’t want your privacy protected because you’re unread? HAH! And BY THE WAY, why the fuck do you think the USA is in an economic shit-storm?

ITS BECAUSE THE GOVERNMENT DIDN’T REGULATE THE ASSHOLES IN SUITS FOR 30 FUCKING YEARS. Those assholes NEED enforced regulation! THEY CLEARLY AREN’T INTERESTED IN TAKING ETHICAL RESPONSIBILITY ON AS AN ADDITION TO THEIR SHITASS CORPORATE POLICIES!

So YES ASSHOLE. Facebook’s behavior is a huge issue because the definition of yours, and my personal privacy is VERY VALUABLE. Say it with us, PRIVACY IS VALUABLE.

PRIVACY SHOULD NOT BE A COMMODITY.

Finally there are the comments of… “Well then just close you account.”

That helps a little but not enough. Facebook is perverting the definition of privacy of which we all have come to love today. Regardless if you have an account or not the company is being reckless with the overall idea of privacy. And from this bullshit wall-street-like irresponsibility they’re wielding, we the US Taxpayers, the Canadian Taxpayers, the EU Taxpayers, and all other Taxpayers, are going to end up having to pay for the laws to save us from the raping of our ideas of what personal privacy really means and should continue to mean.

So now that I’ve said my piece on why this shit matters GREATLY, I’m leaving you with Schumer’s letter. Read it, and fucking get the issue. Stop being ignorant.

Schumer was joined in his letter to Facebook by Senators Franken, Bennet, and Begich:

Dear Mr. Zuckerberg,

We are writing to express our concern regarding recent changes to the Facebook privacy policy and the use of personal data on third party websites. While Facebook provides a valuable service to users by keeping them connected with friends and family and reconnecting them with long-lost friends and colleagues, the expansion of Facebook – both in the number of users and applications – raises new concerns for users who want to maintain control over their information.

The following three changes have raised concerns:

1. Publicly available data. Facebook’s expansion of publicly available data to include a user’s current city, hometown, education, work, likes, interests, and friends has raised concerns for users who would like to have an opt-in option to share this profile information. Through the expanded use of “connections,” Facebook now obligates users to make publicly available certain parts of their profile that were previously private. If the user does not want to connect to a page with other users from their current town or university, the user will have that information deleted altogether from their profile. We appreciate that Facebook allows users to type this information into the “Bio” section of their profiles, and privatize it, but we believe that users should have more control over these very personal and very common data points. These personal details should remain private unless a user decides that he/she would like to make a connection and share this information with a community.

2. Third party data storage. Previously, Facebook allowed third-party advertisers to store profile data for 24 hours. We are concerned that recent changes allow that data to be stored indefinitely. We believe that Facebook should reverse this policy, or at a minimum require users to opt in to allowing third parties to store data for more than 24 hours.

3. Instant personalization. We appreciate that Facebook is attempting to integrate the functionality of several popular websites, and that Facebook has carefully selected its initial partners for its new “instant personalization” feature. We are concerned, however, that this feature will now allow certain third party partners to have access not only to a user’s publicly available profile information, but also to the user’s friend list and the publicly available information about those friends. As a result of the other changes noted above, this class of information now includes significant and personal data points that should be kept private unless the user chooses to share them. Although we are pleased that Facebook allows users to opt-out of sharing private data, many users are unaware of this option and, moreover, find it complicated and confusing to navigate. Facebook should offer users the ability to opt-in to sharing such information, instead of opting out, and should make the process for doing so more clear and coherent.

We hope that Facebook will stand by its goal of creating open and transparent communities by working to ensure that its policies protect the sensitive personal biographical data of its users and provide them with full control over their personal information. We look forward to the FTC examining this issue, but in the meantime we believe Facebook can take swift and productive steps to alleviate the concerns of its users. Providing opt-in mechanisms for information sharing instead of expecting users to go through long and complicated opt-out processes is a critical step towards maintaining clarity and transparency.


Interact: Write Senator Schumer

April 26, 2010

We’re sort of on hiatus this week since work is nuts now but, what we have done is devised another assignment for you this week. A more awesome assignment.

We’ve written a form email for you to send on over to Senator Schumer. Mr. Schumer might go to bat for us in Facebook’s recent infringement. All you have to do is copy, click this link, paste the email and fricken’ click submit!

You’d be surprised how much more effective writing a Politco is than standing out in front of a corporation screaming about something completely different from the other dude screaming next to you… protesters are less effective. Write a fucking letter. Write our fucking letter!

Could not be easier – so GET TO IT! EMAIL HIM RIGHT NOW!



“Senator Schumer –

Unethical business practices run rampant in the USA everyday undermining what our democracy could be.

Facebook is absolutely no exception and so I ask you to ignore their requests to “sit and talk.” They’re determined to change the definition of personal privacy for everyone, even those who don’t use Facebook, without sitting down and talking to us about it. Facebook hasn’t offered us, users and non-users alike, a fair platform to honestly negotiate. The company is so despicable they’re ready to take their shady practices to the legal platform, charging the US Tax Payer a cost in legalities just to derive a simple and ethical outcome. Something they’re fully capable of doing, but refuse to do.

Facebook has already spent the Canadian and UK Tax Payer’s money. Please don’t let them spend anymore of ours than need be.

A company that cannot implement its own fair ethics and fair business practices is a danger to overall democracy. Facebook is a hindrance to democracy. Please send Facebook, and all corporate/totalitarian regimes/companies, a message by ignoring their call for arbitration. Someone needs to put their foot down and humble these white-collar criminals.

Also – there has been started a collection of privacy issues online at
facebookwatchdog.wordpress.com .

Thank You –
Taxpayer [insert your name]  ”