Facebook Privacy: Two Opposing Takes
Maybe 'privacy' is evolving; or this is just about making money
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2010 11:08 AM CST
Facebook privacy settings are raising a new debate about how much of our lives should be up for public viewing.   (AP Photo/Russel A. Daniels)

(Newser) – Facebook's decision to make users' private data public is still reverberating, and Michael Arrington wishes the "Luddites" opposed to the development would just be quiet and face up to a modern reality: "Privacy is already really, really dead." Big companies already know the intimate details of our lives via credit cards, GPS devices, cell phones, etc. "We don’t really care about privacy anymore," he writes at TechCrunch. "And Facebook is just giving us exactly what we want."

Mark Zuckerberg himself espouses a similar view, arguing that our comfort with sharing personal information is an evolving social norm. Derek Thompson isn't buying any of it at the Atlantic. This is just about money. "Like a Middle Eastern country sitting on top of an ocean of oil, Facebook feels a business-driven pressure to let outsiders (ad companies) drill deep into their reserves, so they can shove Coldplay tickets in front of Coldplay fans and job listings in front of college seniors, and so forth." Facebook shouldn't try to play it off as anything else.