Why is Facebook whoring me out?

Why is Facebook whoring me out?

Summary: I've been pondering this note, sent to me by a friend on Facebook last week:Facebook needs to recode their ads... It's one thing when the ad for singles waiting for me is accompanied by a picture of my lovely wife...

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I've been pondering this note, sent to me by a friend on Facebook last week:

Facebook needs to recode their ads... It's one thing when the ad for singles waiting for me is accompanied by a picture of my lovely wife... Its another when the pic is Mitch Ratcliffe!!!

I am married. Facebook knows I am married, because it is in my profile. Yet, the company feels free to use my picture to promote singles ads under the headline "Local singles are waiting for you." I confirmed that this was the situation with my Facebook friend—you can see the thread here.

Moreover, I have never given any company my permission to use my image in advertising. Someone owes me money.

Finally, I don't think my wife, her friends, my family or anyone who knows me would be pleased to see that I am apparently trolling for dates on Facebook. The numbskull at Facebook who thought of using member photos in this way should learn that "transparency" in our lives does not make our life story malleable and changeable by commercial interests. In a way, this is a libel (a written slander), since it associates my name and image with a perceived act of adultery.

Facebook, if you are listening: Stop using member photos for any commercial purpose they do not explicitly endorse. If I see or hear of this use of my image again, I'll be thinking about calling a lawyer.

The abuse of personal data is only beginning. Companies that offer everything for "free" are extracting a huge price from each of us in the form of information, images and private records that they intend to "monetize." It is time to stop letting these companies see how far they can get before someone gets angry.

Topic: Social Enterprise

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27 comments
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  • Set your privacy settings

    You can set your privacy settings to not display your information or use you for friends "ads".
    JT82
    • that's not the way to find out

      Wouldn't it be polite, just good business, to ask if they could use my
      information? I'd like to know what it will be used for specifically, not just
      that it will be used.

      An opt-out option buried in settings, never presented as an option when
      I logged in, is not sufficiently forthright. It's bad business to offend your
      customers before they realize they are being used.
      Mitch Ratcliffe
    • By the way, that setting is four layers down

      First, you must open "Settings," then open "Privacy," then click on "News
      Feed and Wall," and, finally, "Facebook Ads." On that fifth page, you can
      finally see the setting.

      That's totally unacceptable. The use of personal data should be a top-
      level preference, not buried where it can't be easily found.

      Why, I wonder, does Facebook do it that way? Couldn't be because they
      know they are abusing user's data, could it?
      Mitch Ratcliffe
      • C'mon Mitch

        Not that I disagree with you on your photo usage rant here, but...

        It's the same game ZDNet plays when one of us tries to contact ZDNet about a typo, an error, or some other issue. We have to search for links to contacts, wade through pages of supposedly helpful content before we can dig down to the level where we can actually find something that begins to approach what we need. Customer support costs money, so ZDNet and admittedly, many other sites, don't want to give it up unless they absolutely have to. Try finding a way to report a Blogspot spam blog, or a Google Group set up for spam link promotional purposes - fun times! FB is doing the same thing, but they're making it difficult for you to take away FB's options to make some dough. It's a weasel move meant to protect the bottom line, which apparently is a priority over customer satisfaction for many sites.
        ejhonda
        • Are you kidding?

          [i]It's the same game ZDNet plays when one of us tries to contact ZDNet about a typo, an error, or some other issue. We have to search for links to contacts, wade through pages of supposedly helpful content before we can dig down to the level where we can actually find something that begins to approach what we need.[/i]

          On the main page of each and every blog posting is "{insert name here}'s bio". Click that and at the top of the VERY NEXT PAGE is "email {insert name here}". Two clicks. Not five.
          mgp3
          • Think homepage

            Whose bio do you access when ZDNet has links on the home page producing 404s, or when they have typos on the home page, or when you get an error message because an image used in a blog is pointing to an internal ZDNet SSL server requiring authentication of the person attempting to view it? (All things I've attempted to report)

            The real kicker is when you get an email response 3 days later saying ZDNet support has checked the home page and can't find the issue you've reported, and then you have to point out to them it's probably because the home page has changed several times since then and no longer features the link in question.

            They should have a webmaster contact at the bottom of the home page. Just pointing out that this is a common tactic among companies.
            ejhonda
        • One weasel move doesn't

          another justify. And I agree it is hard to find support and do lots of
          things on ZD Net, which I have absolutely no control over. However, there
          is a big difference between beginning to use private data without
          permission?not to mention using it in a way that suggests I commit
          adultery?with the attendant need to disclose that and the bad
          organization of contacts on a Web site.

          Lots of things could use fixing.
          Mitch Ratcliffe
  • RE: Why is Facebook whoring me out?

    Yeah I do think it is dumb. I have seen these ads over and over saying so and so wants you to use this app or go this thing. Somebody actually thought I was endorsing one of these ads for real. I already figured it out a long time ago that these people aren't really suggesting the certain thing, but yeah I don't like it that I may be supporting something I don't even like. Now I'm thinking if they don't stop, maybe they need a paid version so they can give us the option to opt out of this ridiculous act.
    bondservant4jesuschrist
    • They never gave you the option to opt-in

      That should be the standard.
      Mitch Ratcliffe
      • RE: Why is Facebook whoring me out?

        @Mitch Ratcliffe

        There are consequently many reasons designed for <a href="http://www.shoppharmacycounter.com/m-582-xanax-zoloft-anti-anxiety.aspx">xanax online</a> en route for not allow and you.
        zolof_1
  • RE: Why is Facebook whoring me out?

    Thank you for finally saying something about this. It needed to be addressed.
    bondservant4jesuschrist
  • lol, who's gonna bell the cat?

    apparently the internet giants can get away with things
    like these because we let them do it, if you aren't going
    to do something about it (who has actually been offended)
    who will.. Nobody, thats who, and the acts will continue.
    erinskieasy
  • RE: Why is Facebook whoring me out?

    Thank you for actually coming out with this story. I think it's about time some one said something about it.
    bondservant4jesuschrist
  • RE: Why is Facebook whoring me out?

    When I do to the Privacy section and click on FB Ads, the page is blank (but still shows the facebook headers).
    mobilejray
  • Facebook

    Thanks for giving me another reason to avoid joining the cyberspace mess called Facebook!
    Cosmo54
  • They are trying so hard to make money....

    And for a very good reason. Right now they know they are not going to survive if they don't do something, no matter how large users base they have.

    I don't think their employees need to worry about that though. Although they don't have abilities to make money for themselves, they are worth billions to companies like Google or Microsoft. I bet those giants are waiting for them to collapse and then will buy it in cheap price.
    Dealing
    • OK, but don't value the company's common stock at $6.5 billion

      on the abuse of our personal information. The imperative of survival
      doesn't justify rewriting a user's personal life for an ad.
      Mitch Ratcliffe
      • What personal information???

        You were dumb enough to put your personal information in a public location.

        You publish the data in a free service with a TOS that specifically explains that everything you post is theirs to use as they please.

        So why am I supposed to feel pitty??? It is your own darn fault.

        Not that I agree with the abuse of trust. But in the end, you gave the full permission to use anything by using their service.

        There is no such thing as a free social network. All of them are nothing but a scam to get personal data to be sold to the highest bidder.
        wackoae
        • My fault?

          Abuse of trust isn't the issue, the misrepresentation of my activities
          and what services I endorse is the issue. Those terms of service
          change constantly, without any presentation of new terms and explicit
          opt-in/out choices for customers. That should be the best practice
          and, if online companies refuse to practice it, it should be the law.
          Every industry that has the power to rewrite contracts with customers
          eventually abuses it.

          Rather than blame customers for being stupid, why not demand
          companies behave responsibly? Your position is that industry can get
          away with anything. That's the wrong lesson to preach, if you look at
          history. If we'd proceeded on that basis, workplace safety, safe food
          and drugs, clean water and virtually everything that a modern nation
          can demand of its industries would never have come to pass.

          Mitch Ratcliffe
          • Yes your fault

            I don't condone corporate abuse .... but:

            #1- They showed you the draconian TOS and you ignored the very visible signs of privacy issues.

            #2- Unfortunately for you, when you give away your rights to a photo, the contract owner can do what ever they want with it. Just ask all the beautiful young girls who sign away their rights to their pictures, just to find out that they are now the new image for a phone sex ad, a men's club or even the local porn store.

            #3- What happened to you is definitely troubling. It proves that Facebook will use your private images and data for what ever they can make money. But in the end, you gave them the right to do it. You signed up to their service totally ignoring the TOS and didn't object to any of the abusive and draconian parts of the contract.

            Was whoring your picture deplorable?? Definitely.
            Should you be angry about it?? Absolutely.
            Do you have a case?? Not a chance.

            Unfortunately, you have yourself to blame for ignoring all the very obvious dangers (to your privacy) and assuming that they would never do anything with your private data (after freely giving it to them).

            I know people don't like to be told I TOLD YOU SO .... but the fact is THEY TOLD YOU SO. You can't complain about something you were warned about from day one. In the end, you have yourself to blame for ignoring basic logic.
            wackoae