The Facebook Privacy/TOS Issue

I’ve watched the lecture and I’ve read the course notes, and I strongly feel that Tama is trying to warn us about privacy, our personal information and social networking sites like Facebook. Whilst we haven’t covered a lot of the indepth part of privacy and terms of use etc., it is obvious that the main cause of concern if economic.

Social networking sites gather data. Personal data created by their members. They then use or sell this data to make an income for themselves. Whether it’s data on what we eat, or watch on tv or how how we vote, somehow this data becomes worth something. It is valuable and somebody somewhere is making money from it. (It hasn’t been made clear EXACTLY HOW they make money from it or EXACTLY WHO is making the money but somebody is.)

This is therefore deemed as exploitive and infringes on personal rights. The big hoo-haa in all of this seems to be that other businesses can make money from data that isn’t theirs.

But what if we are, in fact, having an exchange of services, where neither side is being exploited? If Facebook are providing me with a service, access to applications and games, a way to connect with friends and family, a space to place my photos and videos – surely all these things must come at a price. And what is that price? That price is my data. And I’ll gladly give that data in exchange for what I’m getting. Because I think it’s a bargain price!


3 thoughts on “The Facebook Privacy/TOS Issue

  1. The issue isn’t so much whether companies sell your personal data, but how transparent they are in letting you know they’re going to do it. Oh, and don’t you worry, you’ll get a chance to explore these issues in far more depth in later Net Comms units (especially Net 303, down the track …).

    • Yes I know! I’m not sure if I’m looking forward to or dreading it 🙂 So it’s the transparency that’s the issue. Okay. So if they were upfront and said, we’re selling your data in exchange for all these services we provide, you’d think that was more acceptable then? And would openly and willingly share your data?
      Grr, i just realised you are probably going to make me wait until WEB303 for the answer to that, aren’t you?

      • When you get to NET303 I expect you will be able to answer the question without relying on us at all! 🙂

        Besides, you should be able to figure out my personal position without too much work!

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