Posts tagged “Facebook

Let’s ask bigger privacy questions

With Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook facing incredible scrutiny from the United States government, to Apple’s Tim Cook calling out the company and industry insiders lining up to tell you to delete your Facebook account are we missing the larger issue with privacy?


Background

I’m here to argue that most consumers, especially those arguing against Facebook and standing up for other companies, care about privacy inside of pockets. What do I mean? Let’s look at those who side with a company, taking Apple and Tim Cook here or if you’re siding with any company without first taking into consideration privacy as a whole. Let’s ask some important questions:

  • Are all of your customer facing sites tracker free?
  • Do you encourage end users to utilize VPNs to mask their online traffic?
  • Do you offer dashboards with full insight to the data that is collected on your users?
  • How clear are your own privacy policies?
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The internet itself in 2018 is almost not private by default. It’s a sad reality, but it’s the truth. Seemingly harmless websites are stuffed with ad trackers causing slow page loads and hampering the overall experience all while gathering plenty of analytical data for the site owners to target you — even sites of publishers claiming to care about your privacy.


What to do

Do not trust any entity. There is no company on this earth, including Apple, Google, Amazon or others, that deserve your complete devotion to their security practices. You should scrutinize each and every company, especially those that say they value your privacy.  So what can you do in a world that is seemingly less and less private?

  • Always look for third party alternatives and don’t just settle for what companies offer.
  • Host your own solutions.
  • Research and stay up to date on the latest privacy and security solutions.
  • Engage your friends and family to encourage them to take on extra security methods.

Conclusion

This is a hard topic and one this will be increasingly difficult to manage and maintain as more and more online systems are integrated into our lives; however, with diligence we can maintain a decent level of privacy and security in our lives — it just takes time and effort.

Is Online Privacy a Thing of the Past?

With our data being pinched at by every company under the sun, many just assume that there is no such thing as privacy on the internet anymore.

Is this over-generalized statement true?

Yes and no. There is privacy to be had online, the key to obtaining it is to not use the web or interact on social media. That means no Twitter, Facebook or Instagram for you. Not only can you not use social media, how would you like to stop using cloud services such as Dropbox or your favorite and arguably the best email service, GMail.  If you fret about privacy — online is NOT where you want to be.

However, at the price of disclosing information about yourself to certain trusted services, which typically force you to agree to the terms of the service, you get to use the service for free.  Examples include every Google service, every social network, any online shopping destination and more.  However, web services collecting information about you and your data (surfing habits, email, articles in your email and more) only make your experience better. How? Instead of getting ads that do not relate to you, you can have ads served that actually make you want to click or entice you to try a new product that you’ve been looking for. In addition, if you’re in the Google ecosystem user your shipping information can be pulled from GMail so that you can track your packages easier, your emails can be monitored for spam or Google Now can tell your how far you are from work and let you know how light or heavy the traffic is. Now those are details that you should want to know! Just think, by you providing a little bit of your data you get a great user experience in return. So, why the bellyaching?

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Bottom line: Unless you want to lose free and convenient services on the internet, you might want to think twice about complaining.

HootSuite: Social Media Management for Android

HootSuite for Android is an unbelievable Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Foursquare account management tool. This particular client has a seamless UI that is very natural and easy on the eyes of the user.
When compared to other “do it all” clients such as Seesmic or Tweetdeck, just to name a few; HootSuite definitely has them beat. Why?

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Unlike Seesmic, HootSuite has to advertisement window that is consistently in the view of the user.  In addition, loading of tweets and Facebook status updates can lag.  On the other hand, when it comes to TweetDeck, an app that should be removed from Google Play, this application is still supported by its developers.  Twitter bought Tweetdeck with the sole intentions of closing it down and it has been successful.  The thing that boggles my mind is that smartphone users continue to install it and complain about inconsistencies that will never be fixed.

Bottom line: HootSuite is a real competitor in the social media marketplace, give it a deserving try.

Facebook stock going down?

Mark Zuckerburg has become known for having a fantastic IPO from Facebook.  However, since the initial public offering of the company the price of shares are declining.

What does this say about the company?

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Surely investors are confused at the state of the stock at this point.  We have seen the worth of Zuckerburg go from $16 billion to $14 billion. Although this is more than any normal human will probably posses in a lifetime; drops like this will certainly raise eyebrows.

Bottom line: No one knows the future of Facebook.  As for now, we know this company to contain a wealth of information and it is safe to say it is not going away anytime soon.

Facebook buys Instagram for $1Billion

Yes, it is official.  Facebook will be acquiring Instagram for $1 billion and this is causing quite the alarm for technologists.  Facebook has been under fire for seemingly forever regarding it’s privacy issues and how they actually use the data that we give them.  Now, this raises the question:  “Will Facebook buying Instagram have a negative effect on the users of the Instagram service?  Will their privacy be in question?  How will Facebook use the data and pictures that are posted via this service?

Facebook has responded by saying that they will leave Instagram as it is and since this acquisition has been announced it has remained true to its promise.  On the other hand, due to the privacy issues that Facebook has, that Instagram may inherit, many users have started to deactivate their Instagram accounts.  However, one can only imagine how long it will be before Instagram takes over as the default method for sharing pictures via Facebook.

Bottom line:  Facebook has not defiled Instagram yet.  So let’s wait around see what actually happens.