Facebook Profiling and Rights Ownership

I hope all of you putting up super detailed profiles and “statusing” every second of your life on FaceBook aren’t surprised to hear about the new ad system they are launching that uses your profile and network to target ads at you? Really?

According to a Wall Street Journal report, the new system will “let marketers target users with ads based on the massive amounts of information people reveal on the site about themselves” with future development that is aiming to (in true Orwellian style…or should that Minority Report style) “predict what products and services users might be interested in even before they have specifically mentioned an area.”—Facebook Will Use Profiles To Target Ads, Predict Future

There are only two (mildly) surprising things about this; 1. They are announcing that they are doing it (to draw advertisers I’m sure). 2. They seemingly aren’t doing it already.

There’s a video that did the rounds a couple of months back which raised the issue but I’m not going to link it because I think it goes way too deep in Oswald Conspiracy Territory. However, I’ll mention the issue again; you should be aware and maybe do a bit of research on the terms of use for FB, they own the rights to everything you put in there, not exclusively, you keep your rights, but they now share them with you. Think about that next time you put up private pics that you feel safe with because “only your friends” can see them. Oh and the blog posts you feed to your profile and were so proud of and thought might make your blog the new Techcrunch or Engadget or Talking Points? You don’t own that exclusively anymore either.