Your Facebook is Leaking

Did you know your Facebook privacy has been leaking?  As that social network expands to flow like a never-ending molasses across the grimacing façade of the nameless masses — suffocating us in pokes and Mafia War requests — we need to pause a moment and step back to wonder just what’s happening to us beyond the velvet curtain.

A Tuesday report from Symantec said that, until recently, Facebook apps have inadvertently been leaking user data to third-party developers. In response, Facebook said the problem has been fixed and that no unauthorized Facebook data was shared with third parties.

In a blog post, Symantec’s Nishant Doshi said that third-parties, mostly advertisers, have “accidentally” had access to Facebook user information like profiles, photographs, and chat.

Yikes!  While I’m glad I have tons of Facebook friends, I am also glad I have been smart enough, so far, to not share the pernicious details of my personal life on that network for exploitation by Facebook itself.

What makes the Facebook “accidental” leaking of your privacy even more strangely cruel and bizarre is the news breaking this morning that Facebook was actively seeking, through a paid PR mule, to flay Google in public for similar perceived violations of user privacy:

For the past few days, a mystery has been unfolding in Silicon Valley. Somebody, it seems, hired Burson-Marsteller, a top public-relations firm, to pitch anti-Google stories to newspapers, urging them to investigate claims that Google was invading people’s privacy. Burson even offered to help an influential blogger write a Google-bashing op-ed, which it promised it could place in outlets like The Washington Post, Politico, and The Huffington Post.

The plot backfired when the blogger turned down Burson’s offer and posted the emails that Burson had sent him. It got worse when USA Today broke a story accusing Burson of spreading a “whisper campaign” about Google “on behalf of an unnamed client.”

I don’t know where to start discussing this fractional Facebook personality particulation between perception, behavior and morality.  Does Facebook have a moral center that it can actually identify and then respect?  Or was the social network born in duplicity as it lives on in the arrogant duality of pressing into us what’s wrong with humanity instead of fomenting what’s right within us?

If it came down to having to pick one of the four Evil Empires — MSFT, FacebookApple or Google — under which I’d have to live the rest of my online life, I would pick, hands down, Google.  I know Google.  I love Google.  I have defended the Google.  I have mocked the Google.  I have become the Google.

I like the way Google innovates.  I think Google tries to be transparent.  I enjoy using their products and their design is clean and their updates and implementations are quick and invisible and, so far, if there’s a leak, Google works to fix it while Facebook relies on the, “Ooops!  I did an accident!” excuse.

5 comments

  • This makes me really want to quit Facebook. Yuck.

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  • What they did backfired to them, and Facebook is getting LAMER every second while Google is leveling up and getting BETTER and BETTER. You know what Facebook is? “Facebook is for attention whores. For people that have to live vicariously through other people. For people that have nothing better to do but to sit on the computer all day at their jobs or whatever they do and complain about the weather, their loser lives, or to make themselves feel important. In other words, Facebook takes some of the worst of the human emotions and puts it out there for the whole world to see. People complaining about their kids and what a pain they are instead of doing their job and disciplining their children.”

    Privacy issues? If there was any issue about PRIVACY, then FACEBOOK is the one who should be investigated. Facebook is a giant data mine for marketing companies, and users have NOT A SINGLE CLUE that they’re all being sold by Facebook to marketers. I’ve also read that Facebook has had so much privacy issues in the past. If people should be scared of privacy, it’s Facebook they should be scared of and not Google. Facebook’s database has already stored your profile, your family, your job, school, address, mobile number, email, things you are passionate about, PICTURES, even your personal PICTURES are already their property, YOUR EVERY FRIGGIN MOVE (where you are now, what you ate for breakfast, where you got your new marble counters, where you work, where you hike, blah blah), and THEY OWN IT.

    And then, they had the nerve to badmouth Google? They are truly unprofessional. I’ve already know this when it came out but I just keep on getting mad at FB whenever I read it. My God, Facebook is soo pathetic and so desperate. They can NEVER NEVER NEVER level up to Google!!! In their dreams. They have always tried but never succeeded. Facebook is just an online soap opera for attention seeking, often immature people (NOT ALL of them anyway, but MOST), and pretentious criminals waiting for their next big target. It’s a fad that will fall into the ground eventually. On the other hand, GOOGLE is just about HELPING people and improving their services. I’ve seen their unstoppable INNOVATION ever since I was a highschool kid, when all of my classmates used YAHOO as the only known search engine and being a geek, I used Google and have always been fascinated by it, by the integrity of the people behind it, by its HONESTY, by its culture. They implement updates for better security (I AM SO IN LOVE WITH 2 STEP VERIFICATION in GMAIL, really the most powerful email platform… but be sure you always bring your cellphone if you turn this on), they regularly carry out search algorithm changes to ward off irrelevant search thus leading to USERS’ better search experience (GOOGLE DOESN’T GIVE A DAMN IF WEBMASTERS GET ANGRY OR PISSED, they just strive to have the BEST USER EXPERIENCE). They have this advocacy of fighting spammers, and even if webmasters get slapped often, they RESPECT and LOVE google still, and try their best to IMPROVE THEIR CONTENT. They remain Google loyalists. And look at what they did to the Blogger new interface! After watching the youtube video “Have you seen Blogger lately?”, I was soo hooked
    with tinkering with the new blogger because it was soo fast, so efficient, friendly, and just so attractive (good work with the orange)! Blogspot is fast catching up with wordpress, if they haven’t already. :-) I’m just saying that Facebook should not dream of being a Google because IT SIMPLY WILL NEVER BE.

    I’m sorry for such a long comment that turned into a pseudopost. LOL. I’m just a passionate Google supporter and I can’t keep my mouth shut knowing that Evil Facebook tries to ruin MY Google. Hell if had enough money I’d buy lots of GOOG stocks. I love google. Thanks Sergei Brin and Larry Page and Matt Cutts and Googlers who keep my world simple. Facebook ruins lives and careers. Google just wants to help, Google is everyone’s friend. I LOVE GOOGLE, so don’t ever mess with it. Period. :-)

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