Facebook: The Age of Privacy is Over

In an interview with Techcrunch’s Michael Arrington, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg spent a while talking about Facebook’s privacy policy. The gist of his talk was that the “age” of privacy is over. This is part of what he said:

“When I got started in my dorm room at Harvard, the question a lot of people asked was ‘why would I want to put any information on the Internet at all? Why would I want to have a website?’

“And then in the last 5 or 6 years, blogging has taken off in a huge way and all these different services that have people sharing all this information. People have really gotten comfortable not only sharing more information and different kinds, but more openly and with more people. That social norm is just something that has evolved over time.

“We view it as our role in the system to constantly be innovating and be updating what our system is to reflect what the current social norms are.

“A lot of companies would be trapped by the conventions and their legacies of what they’ve built, doing a privacy change – doing a privacy change for 350 million users is not the kind of thing that a lot of companies would do. But we viewed that as a really important thing, to always keep a beginner’s mind and what would we do if we were starting the company now and we decided that these would be the social norms now and we just went for it.”

I don’t know about you, but what he said sounds a lot like BS to me. The guys over at ReadWriteWeb share my view.

I came to Facebook from Myspace specifically because Facebook allowed me more control over my privacy. Now, Facebook has changed its privacy policy so much that I cannot make some things private. Why would they do this? I don’t buy the official explanation – methinks that Facebook are looking for two things: more money, and more control.

What do you think?

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  1. Happy New Year Kelvin. I’ve never sampled face book.

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