Facebook has drawn protest these last few months for amending it’s privacy and to some it’s forgetting how it started – with users. The ‘user’ community is largely being forgotton now, given that Facebook has now over 400m global users. The biggest challenge facing most business – “how do you find people to sell to?” is now consigned to the trash can – the real next biggest challenge for Facebook will be how they monetize this vast database of information.
This leads us nicely on to the privacy ‘issues’ which still circles over Facebook like a halo and how they intend on making money. One way Facebook will make money is from the user profile data – it’s not surprising with the vast amount of ‘personal’ data that is being uploaded every second that this is going to be the most successful channel.
The biggest problem will be how they handle user privacy? One way might be to remove default ‘safety’ settings and get the user to be proactive – in other words users will get basic default privacy settings and it will be up them to stop third party advertisers from collecting invaluable personal profile data by checking yet some more privacy check boxes.
Facebook may in turn make it more difficult for you to find these settings as it’s not in their interest for you to use them as they will be collecting the dollars from the advertisers. Naughty you might say, but then again the social world is a business and it has to survive somehow.
There is a fine line between protecting user profiles and making money from user profiles. Last week, Facebook had an internal meeting to discuss new Facebook functions that could well help it gain insights about millions of it’s members and help it sell more advertising. These functions will duly arrive in time, especially if Facebook wants to compete directly with power house Google.
Last week Facebook also released some new security features which aim to battle spam and other malicious attacks. One of these functions lets you approve devices that you most frequently use to log in and be notified if your account is accessed from a device you haven’t approved.
In the end it will be the user who has to decide whether they want their information shared for advertising purpose.
Stay safe folks!