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Digging into the latest Facebook privacy issue

Saturday, November 24, 2007 by Dave Winer.

In response to yesterday's piece about gaining control of our data, jmdelaney says that the newest Facebook issue is serious. I don't doubt that it is, I just don't fully understand the issue, and I bet a lot of other people don't either.  Permalink to this paragraph

To restate my point -- there is some kind of disclosure we want them to do, and others we don't. Let's not say all disclosure is bad. I might not mind having a purchase of an electronic gadget be a public act (with conditions) where I would mind disclosure of medications. Clearly this should be up to the individual to decide. Until I understand how it works, I'd like the default to be opt-out, and I decide to opt-in on a case by case basis.  Permalink to this paragraph

What conditions might apply? Well, if they're going to disclose that I bought a Slingbox, there ought to be a way for me to attach to that reference a diary of my experiences with the product. The link shouldn't be without risk to the vendor, it should carry information that's useful to other potential purchasers.  Permalink to this paragraph

A picture named aa.gifTo say that I bought a ticket on American Airlines to fly from New York to San Francisco via Dallas should allow me to add that I missed my connection because the first flight was delayed, and AA refused to cover my hotel expense. Otherwise, of what value is this to the user, and why shouldn't we switch to another network that gives us the ability to communicate about products. Or do they give us that ability?  Permalink to this paragraph

How little we know about what they're doing. Please post links to screen shots. Help us figure it out. As far as I know Facebook hasn't leaked any of my data (or have they?) Permalink to this paragraph

Scott Rafer has two excellent posts on this topic. Permalink to this paragraph

Ethan Zuckerman explains, with screen shots. "Pardon me while I switch all my embarrasing purchasing behavior over to another browser that doesn't know anything about my social networking sites." Permalink to this paragraph

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Last update: 11/24/2007; 9:04:59 PM Pacific. "It's even worse than it appears."

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