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Business / Philosophy of Photography Taking pics is one thing, but understanding why we take them, what they mean, what they are best used for, how they effect our reality -- all of these and more are important issues of the Philosophy of Photography. One of the best authors on the subject is Susan Sontag in her book "On Photography."

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Beware Facebook's New Terms of Service
Old 09-06-2013   #1
noisycheese
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Exclamation Beware Facebook's New Terms of Service

I just received the following alert from ASMP regarding Facebook's "new and improved" user agreement. Of course, it is new and improved - in a way that benefits Facebook but not photographers.

Take a look at the following web page for a cut to the chase type discussion on Facebook's user agreement: http://asmp.org/fb-tos#.Uioq-caThWk

On to the email I received:
Quote:
The new Facebook Terms of Use have been modified to allow the company to sell virtually anything that is uploaded to the service, including all your photos, your identity and your data. Facebook has also explicitly removed the privacy protection from the commercialization rights.

This means that any photos uploaded to Facebook may be sold, distributed or otherwise commercialized with no compensation to the photographer. These new terms of service go into effect today [9-6-2013].

If you wish to provide feedback to the company, you can contact them at
https://www.facebook.com/notes/faceb...53167395945301
ASMP will continue to work to modify the terms of use to be more favorable
to photographers.

Here's the most important language:

"You give us permission to use your name, and profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content (such as a brand you like) served or enhanced by us. This means, for example, that you permit a business or other entity to pay us to display your name and/or profile picture with your content or information, without any compensation to you. If you have selected a specific audience for your content or information, we will respect your choice when we use it."

Visit http://asmp.org/fb-tos#.Uioq-caThWk for a Q&A on this subject.
Moral of the story: If you post your photographs on Facebook, expect them to be distributed, marketed, sold and exploited in a manner that brings maximum revenue to Facebook - and no revenue to you.

Why anyone would freely volunteer to be subjected to this type of flagrantly aggressive, obnoxious, arrogant and exploitative abuse is beyond my ken.
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Old 09-06-2013   #2
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I'm speechless.. Really nasty business..
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Old 09-06-2013   #3
Katie
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I'm about to be done with Facebook ... this adds to the list why. I don't want to set a bad example for my kids; as they are approaching the age of computers and have no education of online presence or anything of the likes. With the new facial recognition software Facebook uses; there will be a database of images of you for all the world to browse by the time you are even mature enough to know why you wouldn't want this out there. I refuse to let me kids get on FB or anything like it.
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Old 09-06-2013   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noisycheese View Post
I just received the following alert from ASMP regarding Facebook's "new and improved" user agreement. Of course, it is new and improved - in a way that benefits Facebook but not photographers.

Take a look at the following web page for a cut to the chase type discussion on Facebook's user agreement: http://asmp.org/fb-tos#.Uioq-caThWk

On to the email I received:


Moral of the story: If you post your photographs on Facebook, expect them to be distributed, marketed, sold and exploited in a manner that brings maximum revenue to Facebook - and no revenue to you.

Why anyone would freely volunteer to be subjected to this type of flagrantly aggressive, obnoxious, arrogant and exploitative abuse is beyond my ken.
WOW.

We were working on a way to post RFF's Classifieds on RFF's Facebook page -- NO MORE!

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Old 09-06-2013   #5
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Though I see the claims made by the ASMP, I don't see how the legal language allows them to sell anything to anyone. It says, "You give us permission to use your name, and profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content" (emphasis mine). That doesn't look like the permission to sell your content to someone else (i.e. no sub-licence). That's not good, of course, but it's not the same as, "any photos uploaded to Facebook may be sold, distributed or otherwise commercialized with no compensation to the photographer."

Also, they mention that the privacy controls have been removed, but the final sentence seems to address that claim as well: "If you have selected a specific audience for your content or information, we will respect your choice when we use it." I'm glad the ASMP is trying to raise the alarm about behavior they're worried about, but I think they've over-stated the effects of the terms update. (Note: I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice)
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Old 09-06-2013   #6
Brian Legge
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The best part is - from interpretations I've heard - Facebook passes on liability to the uploader.

You take a photo of someone and post it on facebook. Facebook sells/licenses the photo to be used by a third party for something commercial. The subject of the photo isn't happy about this and sues. Facebooks ToS evidently puts the unloader on the hook for the lawsuit rather than Facebook itself. Because obviously every photo uploaded has a model release associated with it, right?

Its one thing to lose control of your work and for others to use it without compensation. It another to make yourself legally liable for an unknown, unexpected use.

I pulled all my work off of Facebook a few months ago and won't be posting more there in the future.
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Old 09-06-2013   #7
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24,767 comments in response to the request for comments, I didn't read any that said "Gee, Sugarman, great idea." If I could post there I'd be more succinct: "Kiss my ***ey, re* a*****e, whilst taking your Social Network and doing something with it that might likely be painful (or not, as the case may be) "
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Old 09-06-2013   #8
p.giannakis
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I tend to ignore emails like these - we see far to much spam nowadays - but this does seem to be true. Therefore I deleted all my photographic work from my facebook account leaving only some everyday snapshots..
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Old 09-06-2013   #9
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Indeed, Sir, I bagged my entire account several weeks ago
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Old 09-06-2013   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aeturnum View Post
Though I see the claims made by the ASMP, I don't see how the legal language allows them to sell anything to anyone. It says, "You give us permission to use your name, and profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content" (emphasis mine). That doesn't look like the permission to sell your content to someone else (i.e. no sub-licence). That's not good, of course, but it's not the same as, "any photos uploaded to Facebook may be sold, distributed or otherwise commercialized with no compensation to the photographer."
...
You may be right, but the way I read it is that a sponsor is paying Facebook for an ad, and if they work it out that your picture will help sell the product, that content can be used in the ad with no compensation to you, while FB benefits from being able to offer that content.

My interpretation may be wrong. I'd like to hear all others read this.
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Old 09-06-2013   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aeturnum View Post
Though I see the claims made by the ASMP, I don't see how the legal language allows them to sell anything to anyone. It says, "You give us permission to use your name, and profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content" (emphasis mine). That doesn't look like the permission to sell your content to someone else (i.e. no sub-licence). That's not good, of course, but it's not the same as, "any photos uploaded to Facebook may be sold, distributed or otherwise commercialized with no compensation to the photographer."

Also, they mention that the privacy controls have been removed, but the final sentence seems to address that claim as well: "If you have selected a specific audience for your content or information, we will respect your choice when we use it." I'm glad the ASMP is trying to raise the alarm about behavior they're worried about, but I think they've over-stated the effects of the terms update. (Note: I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice)
I read it the same way. If your FB content can only be viewed by your "friends" this change in policy may have limited consequences as a practcal matter. But if anyone can see your content, FB deems itself free to use that content for commercial purposes w/out any compensation to you. It kind of underscores that FB is not a "public" space, but a commercial operation that allows users to post, at a price.
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Old 09-06-2013   #12
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My typical FaceBook allergy just went into itch and scratch mode.

G
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Old 09-06-2013   #13
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Dumped my Facebook account forever after the Instagram debacle. Recently told a relative about the FB terms of service and what FB could do with the photos and personal information they were putting on FB and all I got a dumb look. People just do not realize what the FB's of this world will do with their data and photos.
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Old 09-06-2013   #14
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Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
My typical FaceBook allergy just went into itch and scratch mode.

G
Dear Godfrey,

You must have a fairly mild case. What about the boils, pustules, skin sloughing off and difficulty in breathing?

Cheers,

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Old 09-06-2013   #15
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Anaphlylactic shock rather. Experienced it twice, not nice (for those around you).

My problem is that all the athletics and sports clubs my children go to use FB as a means of communication. Soon the schools will be using it. Other public services too. This is getting out of hand.
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Old 09-06-2013   #16
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Not sure about the new terms, but generally I operate under the assumption that any operators of "free" services are out to monetise me. You can then go two ways, either avoid "free" services altogether, or instead take precautions and use such services in ways that minimise your exposure to their efforts to use you. I'm of the latter persuasion, I go in with my eyes wide open, remain cynical, and take appropriate precautions.
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Old 09-06-2013   #17
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ha, the ongoing FB angst effects a 'certain' generation again.
Yet, you were happy to use a 'free' marketing tool..oh irony
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Old 09-06-2013   #18
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The divide between public and private has been eroding and redefining since Web 2.0 came on-stream. Those in their early 20s and younger grew up with shared online data, and are evolving a very different idea of privacy - in short, anything online will be assumed to be shared, whether put up by them or someone else.

And being online to this age group is essential - as necessary to them as the telephone or letter writing was to previous generations, and just as unthinkable to not use.

It is increasingly accepted by the internet generation that sharing so-called "private" information is the norm - the price to be paid for Web 2.0 and social media like Facebook. - and that they have no control over this information. So, it's pointless caring about what happens to this information - who uses it and how.

It's only older people (as presumably here) who mostly get riled up. Young people are developing new ideas about ownership - three-quarters of the internet generation regularly download pirate music, books and software (plenty of surveys on online for those who care to Google to confirm).

This inevitably affects how young people view copyright: if you put your photo online, don't expect to "own" it!

In summary, if you want to remain a part of modern culture and not end up a victim of the "technological divide" (like my parents who are now feel totally alienated, being unable to operate their old video player let alone cope with the products of the computer age and the mobile revolution!), you'll just have to accept the inevitable and give up worrying about who's doing what with your online data.

How things will pan out in the future, who knows? Perhaps the generation following the internet generation will be even more cavalier about private space, and we end up with "digital communism" - common ownership of data by the majority...
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Old 09-06-2013   #19
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"You give us permission to use your name, and profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content (such as a brand you like) served or enhanced by us. This means, for example, that you permit a business or other entity to pay us to display your name and/or profile picture with your content or information, without any compensation to you. If you have selected a specific audience for your content or information, we will respect your choice when we use it."
Where exactly does it say this in the facebook terms? What section/subsection? The nearest I can find is...

Quote:
10. About Advertisements and Other Commercial Content Served or Enhanced by Facebook

Our goal is to deliver ads and commercial content that are valuable to our users and advertisers. In order to help us do that, you agree to the following:
1. You can use your privacy settings to limit how your name and profile picture may be associated with commercial, sponsored, or related content (such as a brand you like) served or enhanced by us. You give us permission to use your name and profile picture in connection with that content, subject to the limits you place.
2. We do not give your content or information to advertisers without your consent.
3. You understand that we may not always identify paid services and communications as such.
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Old 09-06-2013   #20
helenhill
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I quit facebook last year...
Never really liked it... don't miss it

Does not surprise Me...Good Riddance !
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Old 09-06-2013   #21
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Thanks for the heads up. Just went to Facebook and deleted all the photos I've ever uploaded to there.

Same reason I stopped using Flicker years ago.

Web ain't a safe place to share copyrighted content.

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Old 09-06-2013   #22
lam
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If you're not being sold the product, then someone is selling you as theirs.

Therefore, only upload photos of your cats, dogs, and only post political/family rants. That way the only people they can sell the data to is themselves....

I deleted my first facebook account last year, after realization that when you "log out" you really don't "log out". There are cookies from Facebook that stay enabled and monitor all your clicks.

This whole debacle ties into the "Click farm" businesses, Does anyone really think these internet applications which somehow stay online and through regular maintenance just EXIST in the nothingness?
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Old 09-06-2013   #23
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**** Facebook. I can't find much "social" in "Social Media" its all about me myself and I...
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Old 09-06-2013   #24
Lawrence Sheperd
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Originally Posted by Nomad Z View Post
Where exactly does it say this in the facebook terms? What section/subsection? The nearest I can find is...
It right here in the proposed Statements of Rights and Responsibilities:

https://www.facebook.com/legal/proposedsrr

Section 10.1

"About Advertisements and Other Commercial Content Served or Enhanced by Facebook

Our goal is to deliver advertising and other commercial or sponsored content that is valuable to our users and advertisers. In order to help us do that, you agree to the following:

1. You give us permission to use your name, profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content (such as a brand you like) served or enhanced by us. This means, for example, that you permit a business or other entity to pay us to display your name and/or profile picture with your content or information, without any compensation to you. If you have selected a specific audience for your content or information, we will respect your choice when we use it.

If you are under the age of eighteen (18), or under any other applicable age of majority, you represent that at least one of your parents or legal guardians has also agreed to the terms of this section (and the use of your name, profile picture, content, and information) on your behalf.

2. We do not give your content or information to advertisers without your consent.

3. You understand that we may not always identify paid services and communications as such."

Subsection 1 would seem to trump subsections 2 and 3.
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Old 09-06-2013   #25
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Originally Posted by Lawrence Sheperd View Post
It right here in the proposed Statements of Rights and Responsibilities:
Thanks. Didn't see that in the T&C pages. I wonder if they'll send me an email about it. Not that I care - I have zero personal info and zero photos on it.

For what it's worth (addressing the general readership), it is beyond me why people use these 'free services' for hosting their photos, especially in light of the regular and on-going changes in terms that erode their rights to control their content while seeking to commercially exploit same. I always thought that buying a domain and some hosted web space is the way to go.
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Old 09-06-2013   #26
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No problem NomadZ. It took me a while to mine down to the proposed changes. Comment period is now officially over. I did not receive anything from Facebook notifying me of the proposed changes. However they must have sent something out since the several tens of thousands of responses to the Facebook page requesting comments supports that supposition.
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Old 09-06-2013   #27
Lawrence Sheperd
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Well, I realized most of you are probably much more established photographers, and so have a much greater worry about theft of work and income than I do, so never mind. None of my business, what do I know?
I think most of us have long ago given up on the hope of any sort of financial or locational privacy. However, the issue of using my likeness (home page icon) or content (photos that I have uploaded) strikes closer to home, regardless of the fact that the financial info is potentially more damaging. The thought of my face showing up in an ad for * insert wildly inappropriate product here * somehow rubs me the wrong way. I don't make any money from my photos and never will, but, to me they are very personal creations.

We probably shouldn't be so upset, since Facebook are just clarifying a long-standing policy spelled out in their terms of service. Shame on me for not thoroughly perusing them before signing up, but I've voted with my feet and have shut the Facebook door behind me.

RichC's analysis on page 1 is spot-on.

edited
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Old 09-06-2013   #28
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Originally Posted by p.giannakis View Post
I tend to ignore emails like these - we see far to much spam nowadays - but this does seem to be true. Therefore I deleted all my photographic work from my facebook account leaving only some everyday snapshots..
You can rest assured that this email is not spam. I have been a member of ASMP ( http://asmp.org/ ) since 2003 and in those ten years, I have never recieved even one spam email from ASMP or a third party spam email due to ASMP selling my email address.

Ignoring the Facebook alert issued by ASMP is everyone's prerogative - which in turn makes stealing and exploiting your photographs and any other intellectual property you post there Facebook's prerogative.

Facebook is not the "one big happy family" that generation Y and Z types as well as hipsters desperately want/need to think it is. It is a multibillion dollar global corporation that is controlled by amoral, greedy businessmen/women who don't think twice about exploiting other people and stealing their photographs "for the good of the company." Their actions make this fact undeniable.

Quote:
I pulled all my work off of Facebook a few months ago and won't be posting more there in the future.
@Brian,
This is exactly why I have never put even one of my images on Facebook to begin with. Never have. Never will.
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Old 09-06-2013   #29
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Why would it come as a surprise to anyone that companies like this are run by greedy people?

What always surprises me, on the other hand, is the huge number of givers on the internet. Open source developers who build really useful software, people who run forums like this, people who put up sites providing really useful information and all for nothing...

Encourage the good guys and shun the Facebooks of this world, would be my advice, which is free.

Absolutely.
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Old 09-07-2013   #30
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. . . frankly I do know pro photographers who put their work online and then spend hours on "Google Images" each month, making sure they are not being copied. I cannot talk them out of the worry -- that a church newsletter will use one of their photos for free -- and ruin them financially and personally.
It's not the financial loss to me: it's the financial gain to them. Rip off a few bucks here, a few cents there, from a million people, and you've making serious money. More to the point, it's just damnably unsavoury. Church newsletters, people's screen-savers: that's one thing. But when a huge corporation steals pennies from the poor, I want to see someone's head on a spike.

Cheers,

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Old 09-07-2013   #31
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It's not the financial loss to me: it's the financial gain to them. Rip off a few bucks here, a few cents there, from a million people, and you've making serious money. More to the point, it's just damnably unsavoury. Church newsletters, people's screen-savers: that's one thing. But when a huge corporation steals pennies from the poor, I want to see someone's head on a spike.

Cheers,

R.
Absolutely.

I am now wondering how long it will take for flickr doing the same thing.
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Old 09-07-2013   #32
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Originally Posted by Lawrence Sheperd View Post
It right here in the proposed Statements of Rights and Responsibilities:

https://www.facebook.com/legal/proposedsrr

Section 10.1

"About Advertisements and Other Commercial Content Served or Enhanced by Facebook

Our goal is to deliver advertising and other commercial or sponsored content that is valuable to our users and advertisers. In order to help us do that, you agree to the following:

1. You give us permission to use your name, profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content (such as a brand you like) served or enhanced by us. This means, for example, that you permit a business or other entity to pay us to display your name and/or profile picture with your content or information, without any compensation to you. If you have selected a specific audience for your content or information, we will respect your choice when we use it.

If you are under the age of eighteen (18), or under any other applicable age of majority, you represent that at least one of your parents or legal guardians has also agreed to the terms of this section (and the use of your name, profile picture, content, and information) on your behalf.

2. We do not give your content or information to advertisers without your consent.

3. You understand that we may not always identify paid services and communications as such."
So even if you are a child we will exploit you under the premise that your parents gave us permission to.. Way to go FB!

My daughter had to sign up with FB for one of her college classes, there were.. dialogues held on there. She did not personalize her profile, used a fictitious name which the instructor agreed to and posted no content of worth. It is unfortunate though that schools or classes actually require people to use such a network.

Additionally, one can delete all they want but if your posts or photos or anything has ever been 'liked' then it is still out there on each of those individuals profiles. Still, deleting is better than continuing to accept their policies.

I got on there to communicate with out of country family several years ago and after about a year and a half I left. I did not like the invasion of privacy and the overall behavior of the general FB populace. It's only gotten worse since, so I am glad I made the decision when I did.
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Old 09-07-2013   #33
Bob Michaels
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Facebook is a for profit company. They do not charge users directly but generate revenue by selling users data for targeted marketing purposes. This is nothing new. They always have.

Because they are a large company dealing with a massive number of small disorganized users, they will always create terms of service that are most beneficial to them including eliminating any restrictions on what they can do with your information or data. This is nothing new. They always have.

If you have any friends who still believe that most on-line services who do not charge users are there primarily to make users happy and not to make a profit, be cautious of those friends. They are out of touch with reality.
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Old 09-07-2013   #34
Rogier
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I know first hand of two of my clients who have a teenager who was refused for colleges because something they wrote on FB years ago. It wasn't even that bad either...

If you have / want to be online better have a "nice" picture perfect online profile to avoid trouble in the future....




Quote:
Originally Posted by isoterica View Post
So even if you are a child we will exploit you under the premise that your parents gave us permission to.. Way to go FB!

My daughter had to sign up with FB for one of her college classes, there were.. dialogues held on there. She did not personalize her profile, used a fictitious name which the instructor agreed to and posted no content of worth. It is unfortunate though that schools or classes actually require people to use such a network.

Additionally, one can delete all they want but if your posts or photos or anything has ever been 'liked' then it is still out there on each of those individuals profiles. Still, deleting is better than continuing to accept their policies.

I got on there to communicate with out of country family several years ago and after about a year and a half I left. I did not like the invasion of privacy and the overall behavior of the general FB populace. It's only gotten worse since, so I am glad I made the decision when I did.
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Old 09-07-2013   #35
jarski
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cant say am surprised, just once again disappointed. old saying 'if you don't pay for anything, you are the price' is proven true again
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Old 09-07-2013   #36
Mackinaw
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On a related note, it's estimated that as of September, 2013, Facebook has 1.15 billion users. Most folks don't read the fine print or, if they do, they don't really care.

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Old 09-07-2013   #37
fdarnell
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Zuckerberg is a true communist - he believes he has a right to know everything about everyone and do whatever he wants with the information for his own purpose. I figured this is coming, as it will with ALL other internet sites. The only answer is to make it go dark. The dark forces are taking over everywhere. Prepare for the digital dark ages. We will be spied on, sold, lied to, copied, abused and treated like dirt.

Markie's mother and father must never have told him the most important words: "It's NONE of your business"

The only answer is the OFF switch.
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Old 09-07-2013   #38
fdarnell
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People will quickly see that Eric Kim's way will be the only way on the internet. Everything on the internet is considered free. Act accordingly. It will ALL be stolen and used without your permission. It's the way it works.

Again, use the OFF switch.
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Old 09-07-2013   #39
Roger Hicks
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I understand, but it means you are not the type who could, for instance tolerate, a retail store. People will shoplift. One has to balance putting the goods out for everyone to handle vs. those who will steal. . . .
No. It's the exact opposite. A few (or even lots of) small-scale thieves are, to me, morally very different from a single, large scale thief using its bully status to steal from millions of individuals.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 09-07-2013   #40
Jamie Pillers
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
My typical FaceBook allergy just went into itch and scratch mode.

G
Funny.......
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