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Facebook Privacy: Does Liking a Biz Make You Its Spokesman?

Source: BCC. Hit LIKE on a biz page in Facebook, and the biz gets to use your face or name to promote itself in your friends’ feeds? Really? Watch this video. Elliot Schrage, VP Public Policy for Facebook, stumbles terribly and has no good answer for the BBC’s Emily Maitlis.

As Facebook fixes a bug that lets members view private photos of other members — not surprisingly, photos of Facebook CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg are all over the web right now — here’s another unsettling development we’ll bring to your attention. Businesses you LIKE on the social network are permitted to use your name and profile on their streaming ads, interspersed with regular member news feeds from friends. And, so far anyway, you can’t opt out.

Facebook announced the day before Thanksgiving that it would be mixing ad-sponsored “stories” within members’ Facebook streams. Watch BBC reporter Emily Maitlis with Elliot Schrage, VP Public Policy for Facebook. She calls him out on this, below, and the exec has no good answers — and a lot of stumbles. This ran in the UK this weekend.


Source: The BBC via Computerworld

So, just because you like a brand, Facebook makes you an (unpaid) spokesperson for it? What?

Also today, reports regarding a bug in Facebook (discovered by bodybuilders, according to a reports online) that makes photos marked private available to everyone, is getting a fix.

Think the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which just recently dropped its investigation into Facebook, might spin back around for this one? I do.

About the author

Gina Smith

Gina Smith

Gina Smith is a New York Times bestselling author and an award-winning journalist online, in print, radio and national TV. A former correspondent for ABC News, Gina is the co-founder and editorial director of aNewDomain Media. Email Gina at gina@anewdomain.net find her on Twitter @ginasmith888

  • It reallyis not a profound question, Elliott. It’s a pragmatic question I expect Facebook to get more and more often! gs

  • what’s privacy?

  • This thing we used to think we had. Ah, nm.