From Pine View Farm

Facebook Frolics, Connecting the Dots 0

You’ve seen Facebook Connect.

When a website invites you to login with your Facebook credentials, that’s Facebook Connect.

I always refuse that invitation, because, by so doing, I am not just logging into that website. I am also telling Facebook that I am logging in and permitting Facebook to track my actions while I’m there. I do the same if I login with Google, Twitter, or other credentials–I open myself to be tracked, then have my behavior sliced, diced, and sold to the highest bidder.

That is not safe HEX.

Indeed, if a site or service requires me to use my Facebook credentials, as Pandora does, I won’t use that site or service.

At MarketWatch, Jake Mann and Meena Krishnamsetty think that Facebook Connect is Facebook’s secret weapon to keep from becoming another penny stock:

If the social media company did choose to slap a price tag of, let’s say $24.99 a month (LinkedIn Premium’s charge, according to the column–ed.), on the service, third-party sites would have little choice but to comply. Any site bold enough to resist this charge would risk losing the fraction of their user base that was signed up exclusively through Connect. In today’s rough-and-tumble e-marketplace, we’re willing to bet that this is a setback that no site, large or small, could afford.

If Facebook does choose to start charging for Connect, it would realize an additional $4.5 billion in annual revenues by the end of 2015. Considering the fact that current estimates from Wedbush Securities and eMarketer expect the company to finish 2012 with close to $5 billion in revenues, we can immediately see that any monetization of Facebook Connect would be material to the company’s bottom line.

And, regarding the slicing, dicing and selling, read this report at EFF.

Read it now.

We’ve been seeing a range of reports about Facebook partnering up with marketing company Datalogix to assess whether users go to stores in the physical world and buy the products they saw in Facebook advertisements. A lot of the reports aren’t getting into the nitty gritty of what data is actually shared between Facebook and Datalogix, so the goal of this blog post is to dive into the details. We’re glad to see that Facebook is taking a number of steps to avoid sharing sensitive data with Datalogix, but users who are uncomfortable with the program should opt out (directions below). Hopefully, reporting on this issue will make more people aware of how our shopping data is being used for a lot more than offering us discounts on tomato soup.


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