Recently I’ve noticed a very disturbing trend of social networking sites that require you to throw your friends under the bus to get whatever goodness the given site is offering you. The latest entry in this social networking arms race is Bing, which recently presented me with this very scary dialog box:
So not only do I need to give up just about everything (did they leave anything out?) about me, I have to give up my friends and everything about them as well. Since when did this ever — even remotely — become OK?
I did not click “Okay”. You can thank me later, my friends.
But I find this really, really disturbing when the simple act of “friending” someone on a site like Facebook allows you to lose control of your information to everyone you’ve ever friended.
This prompted me to investigate what setting in Facebook I could change to make sure others weren’t inadvertently or even on purpose sharing my data with others without my knowledge. I found a page on Facebook that appeared to explain (even with an illustration) how to control this:
But I could never find this. Also, note how the only way to not give up your friends is to turn off the Facebook Platform entirely, which of course shuts down your ability to use Facebook to login to other sites as well as any apps or games you use on Facebook. In other words, we’re toast people.
If you use Facebook, you can forget about privacy. Just forget about it. Even if you think you are controlling it, you must trust that all of your friends — ALL of them — are not going give you up when they very likely already have.