Facebook paranoia

Evil Facebook

Thanks to Eylan Ezekiel for the link to an article in The Guardian that contains a couple of quote-worthy paragraphs: On Facebook, even Harvard students can’t be too paranoid.

We now learn that Facebook holds a patent for technology – as yet unexploited – that would use your computer’s camera to gauge your emotional state from your facial expression, the better to target you with content and advertising. Just days ago, Facebook was granted another patent for a system that judges your mood from your typing speed. It’s hard to believe I’ve spent the past five years being insufficiently paranoid.

Some people might think I’ve got a hang-up about the evils of Facebook, when there are other tech giants doing bad stuff too. They’d be right: while there’s abuses and underhand dealings happening all over the place, I think that Facebook in particular is dumbing down users of the web, and also ‘norming’ surveillance culture.

Posting on Facebook is like writing in your diary and then leaving it in the park. Actually it’s worse: it’s like giving a football stadium permission to show highlights from your diary on the giant screen. Think about it that way – if nothing else, you’ll take a lot more care with apostrophes in future.

It’s easy to be flippant (although I’m always careful with apostrophes) but just you wait until the shit hits the fan.

Just. You. Wait.