The United Nations Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea was highly critical of Facebook in a report, saying that the social network refused its requests for information on the accounts of users suspected of involvement in piracy, and Facebook responded that it was under no legal obligation to comply with those requests.
Facebook’s efforts to ensure that advertising on the social network is unobtrusive and that ads are interesting to users are coming up short, according to the results of the July 2013 American Customer Satisfaction Index E-Business Report, which was released Tuesday in partnership with customer experience analytics firm ForeSee, as 27 percent of respondents said advertising on Facebook interferes with their experience on the site, the highest among social networks.
Application security provider MyPermissions announced the launch of a privacy certification program for app developers, the MyPermissions Trust Certification, which it said is aimed at standardizing the policies and usage of personal information between developers and end-users.
When Facebook announced Home, a heavily integrated mobile platform for Android phones, many people were worried that it represented just another invasion of privacy by the social network. While Facebook will become a bigger part of users’ mobile experiences, the company swears that Home does not take any more information than its native application or the desktop version of the site. Facebook’s Michael Richter (chief privacy officer) and Erin Egan (chief privacy officer of policy) attempted to address users’ concerns in a recent blog post.
Even though Facebook’s privacy settings change often, a study by Carnegie Mellon University shows that more users are becoming better at keeping sensitive information off the social network. According to a study of more than 5,000 Facebook profiles, fewer users are making public information such as date of birth and political affiliation. However, confusion over Facebook’s privacy settings has led to an increase in posting of interests such as favorite movies, books, and music — as well as sharing to applications and advertisers.
Facebook is continually changing its privacy settings, trying to give users more control over what they want to share and with whom. But still, even with the most stringent settings in place, personal information can find a way out. The Wall Street Journal examined how Facebook changed the lives of two gay college students, when a classmate added them to a public group for other gay choir singers at the school — an action that was shared on the students’ news feeds.
A Facebook customer-satisfaction survey appears to be making the rounds, but this one sticks to the user experience, and doesn’t detour into politics, like a similar effort that was released in error last month.
Facebook has compiled myriad data about what users are doing on the site. What about when they go to another corner of the Web? The company has partnered with Datalogix in an effort to see if people who see ads on the social network end up actually buying the products. There’s already a movement for the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the deal.
For years, Mixi has been the social media site of choice in Japan. But new reports suggest that Facebook could overtake Mixi by the end of the year, thanks to The Social Network and a model that promotes more sharing of information.
Not everyone was excited when Facebook acquired facial recognition software company Face.com. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), the radio host-turned-politician, called a hearing Wednesday to discuss issues regarding facial recognition. In particular, he didn’t care for Facebook’s opt-in by default setting and what it means for privacy.