Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook has been playing games with user privacy for the past year. Every time Facebook users have complained in the past about abuse and misuse of their information, Facebook’s flipped the bird in response. After intense pressure from the public, governmental entities launching investigations, and privacy advocates circling with lawyers, Facebook now plays the role of repentant sinner this week with a “simplified” privacy overhaul that is supposed to be user-friendly and protect data from the search engines, third party apps, etc.
Let’s cut to the chase. There is no reason to believe that Facebook or its founder cares one iota what you think about privacy. Indeed, Zuckerberg has made it clear even now that he thinks Facebook users would prefer to share their data instead of keeping it private.
So why the change with the new Facebook Privacy-Friendly Happy Face? Facebook’s investors are unhappy campers watching Zuckerberg nearly turn their “next Google” investment into a cyber-Titanic by being an uncaring twit who disrespected his target market. So the hired guns were called in to stop the iceberg from sinking the ship. Facebook hired a former Federal Trade Commission (FTC) chairman to fend off the FTC and Congress. And the full court press of PR spin doctors went out to sing the praises of the reformed Facebook.
Is it possible that Facebook’s privacy stance is legit? Sure. As long as it needs to be to keep the company afloat and the government at bay.
Would I trust my data with Facebook? No. They haven’t earned anyone’s trust with the way they’ve acted. Honesty forced at the point of a gun lasts only until the gun is turned on someone else.