Facebook Can’t Keep a Secret


Facebook: The privacy saga continues

Facebook groups now displays who and when people saw a post in groups

I noticed this start in chat messages, now it’s going into groups… so now what you look at isn’t even private. This makes it hard  to simply “ignore” something for a while.

I’m all for technology making things easy, but how exactly do they know you even read it? There are so many things in a feed that just fly past un-noticed. 

Let’s take this one step further…

Can you imagine if Facebook ever comes out with a mobile phone as rumoured? Here’s a couple of scenarios that are already possible with existing technology:

Scenario #1:

I’ll ring you and you’ll look at your phone and see that it’s me. Deciding that you don’t want to talk to me right now (for whatever reason, that’s up to you – none of my business) you don’t answer, mentally thinking that you should probably call me back later if I leave a message. 

Your phone’s accelerometer knows that you picked up the phone, the camera saw your face and eyes looking at the screen, so it knows that you know who was calling. 

All of a sudden on my phone, I get a notification that you saw my incoming call.

Scenario #2:

I ring you and you don’t hear it, it’s turned off, whatever… you weren’t aware of my call at the time.

I leave a message, and some time later you see your phone, the missed call and/or listen to the message I left.

All of a sudden on my phone, I get a notification that you saw my missed call/listened to my message

In both scenarios, I now know that you are aware of my call and at what time you made aware of it. The clock is now running. How long you take to get back to me (if at all) suddenly means so much more to me. Instead of just suspecting, now I know for sure that you’re ignoring me.

And remember, if this functionality is based on Facebook’s current privacy policy habits it will be turned on by default, and you will have to hunt through endless settings pages to turn it off. In fact you might not be aware that it’s doing it for a few months until someone points it out to you!

Facebook is trying to make everything on it’s site as frictionless as possible. At some point though we like friction. I don’t want to know what articles you read or videos you watched during your lunch break (or while you were supposed to be working, whoops!). I don’t want to know when you comment on some news site about the latest boy-band making 16 year old girls swoon.

I also don’t want you knowing what I’m doing, unless I tell you.