We are being used by Facebook. It is giving out our personal information freely. It is establishing a dangerous precedent under the guise of helping us connect. It facilitates divisive attitudes and runs contrary to the true reason we started using social networks in the beginning -- human interaction.
It's a disease, so #deletefacebook today.
I have started the gradual process of using the platform less and less, by systemically operating a script which will remove my content. And there is much to remove. There are shares and likes. There are lengthy posts I posted to impress people. There are countless WordPress notifications which inform people what I am doing. Actually, I would bet that I use Facebook to stroke my ego more than engage with other people. I would hazard a guess that this also applies to many other users.
The executive chairman for News Corporation, Rupert Murdoch, is asking for Facebook, Twitter, and even Google to subsidize the news websites that show up on people's newsfeeds. Essentially, Murdoch wants someone to pay him for the news that his company, and others like his, would put out on people's feeds.
This change comes right after the announcement of Facebook's updated newsfeed policies that prioritize friends and family first over the likes of news sites and advertisement pages.
This effectively puts news corporations at an extreme disadvantage for having their news seen at all. As anticipated, Wall Street did not take well to the news at all. They expect users will spend less money overall making their market shares decrease over time.
Newsfeed Chief for Facebook, Adam Mosseri, did not really have much to offer in the way of a compromising solution. He was quoted in the press announcement as telling news and advertisement companies to "experiment" and see what "content gets more likes." A very shunted answer when announcing that they are basically cutting off the toes of news companies.
Fake news sites dot the landscape on platforms like Facebook and Google. Unfortunately, such sites play a dangerous game of misinformation. They've even proved lucrative for the perpetrators. Facebook and Google recently took efforts to ban fake news sites, though. With these efforts, perhaps the flood of fake news will lessen in a noticeable way.
On social media, fake news rose to popularity with the US election more so than ever before. Such sites found their way into Google search results and Google News. This type of news spreads inaccurate information on purpose rather than pushing a particular opinion or belief.
Google's policies now state that sites cannot misstate or misrepresent information. If a site breaks the policy, then it could lose Google AdSense privileges. Of course, fake news sites depend upon Google AdSense revenue in order to turn a profit from misinformation.
Recruitment drives through LinkedIn now face competition as Facebook creates a new job opening feature.
Pages have always been an important part of Facebook's ecosystem, and now they've added a new twist: job listings. Companies who currently market their products via their Facebook news feeds may now also have a new reason to funnel traffic that way; driving traffic for Facebook and paying for the privilege.
At present, it is only an experiment, first spotted by TechCrunch, and part of a wider drive to address the burgeoning social recruitment market. It is, in part, a response to behaviour that Facebook confirm they have already noticed: small businesses offering jobs through their existing Facebook pages.
There are already others participating in this market -- LinkedIn, Work4 and Jobscore to name but a few -- so there is clearly demand to be addressed. These services can already be embedded in Facebook pages, so it is a natural follow-on for Facebook to launch their own service. Speculation online is that Facebook already did some preparation work when it tested Profile Tags in 2015.
In December, Facebook started testing classified ads and now you can search across groups (public and subscribed to) and within categories. This feature should be released in the next few weeks with an a sales group link in the left pane. Users can post items by going into groups and selecting on 'Sale and Item' next to 'Write a Post'. Users will need to enter some information similar to an eBay auction to list their item for sale to the group.
If you have ever posted something on Facebook that you would not want the public to see, a new improved search function of the social network might bring that old post up from your timeline. The changes will be part of the desktop interface and the iOS app rolled out this week. The amount that gets shared is based on your privacy settings, but if you allow the public to see your timeline, then the new search will be better able to find the old stuff that would embarrass you today.
On your Android phone, the popular messaging app WhatsApp now is providing end-to-end encryption. The Open Whisper Systems technology will move to iOS soon also. Whisper Systems was purchased by Twitter four years and the Open Whisper Systems is the open source off-shoot. With over 600 million users, keeping messages and pictures save from hackers has become more important every month with the NSA and hackers getting ahold of celebrity photos from Apple cloud services.
@adabot on @snapchat (Photo credit: adafruit)
Snapchat Refuses Multi-billion Offers
Facebook has tried and failed to claim the popular messaging app Snapchat. Last year, Facebook offered the company $1 billion dollars, but the company refused their offer. Recently, Mark Zuckerberg offered Snapchat $3 billion dollars cash. The CEO of Snapchat, Evan Spiegel, has released a statement saying they are not considering selling the company at this time. He also said he would be willing to talk about a sale in 2014.
Illustration of Facebook mobile interface (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Facebook Defends Teen Usage Policy
Facebook has decided to loosen its restrictions on teen uses. The company argues that teens are experts at controlling their privacy. In previous years, posts by teenagers could not be seen by a public audience. They could only been seen by friends. Teens did not have the option of making their posts visible to the public. However, in the past, teenagers had looser privacy settings on their account.