The Facebook Freaky Line

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO/Founder of Facebook

It seems everyone is getting freaked out by Facebook once again. Molly Wood at CNET says that Facebook’s automatic sharing features are ruining sharing. That got everyone to pile on over on Techmeme.

First, what does this automatic sharing feature (otherwise known as “frictionless sharing”) do? Well, every time I play a song on Spotify, for instance, it tells everyone something like “Robert Scoble is listening to Skrillex on Spotify.” On Facebook’s web interface that shows up over on the right in the new ticker (not everyone has that, and only the web version shows it). It also puts that onto my new Timeline (only developers have that feature, so far).

It doesn’t just do this for music, either. Everytime I read a story in the Washington Post’s new newsreader it does the same. “Robert Scoble read Ex-MySpace CEO resigns as Zynga executive on Washington Post Social Reader.” (Which I actually did, right now).

Here’s Don Graham, Chairman of the Washington Post showing me how that app works:

Soon, Facebook PR told me this week, about 60 different apps will do the same. So, whenever I take a picture of a meal, or do some other action, with Foodspotting, you’ll know it. If I ever exercise with Runkeeper, you’ll know it. And on, and on, and on.

Now many of you think that’s very freaky. You don’t want to be an oversharing social media wanker like me. You want some parts of your life to be private. You don’t like it if Mark Zuckerberg sucks every bit of knowledge out of your cell phone and shoves it onto your Timeline for everyone of your friends to see (remember, only egocentric social media wankers like me make all their detail public, right?).

Why would ANYONE agree to this? Well, some, like Dave Winer, haven’t. He deleted his Facebook account recently.

Others, like me, are “all in” and very intrigued with this new world. We’ve crossed the freaky line never to return to a world where apps don’t share with Facebook.

What’s really interesting to me is that my wife has crossed the freaky line. She loves the new Spotify and thinks it’s cool her friends get to see her music. That shocked me, because she usually is pretty conservative when it comes to being public. Even better I’ve had dozens of conversations with people and from teenagers to old farts, like me, there’s an astute level of understanding of where the freaky line is for them. If an app crosses the freaky line in a way they don’t like, they turn it off or learn how to use it so it doesn’t spray everything onto Facebook (Spotify, for instance, lets you do just that in the settings).

What the heck is Mark Zuckerberg doing?

He’s building a new media company. One where the media comes TO US. Compare to boring old Yahoo. There we have to visit the media by going to or

See, the new world is you just open up Facebook and everything you care about will be streaming down the screen.

This is what Zuckerberg doesn’t want to explain to you: to be your new media assistant he needs to know everything about you. Think about it. When i clicked “like” on the San Francisco 49ers Facebook Page, all of a sudden I started seeing news items about the 49ers.

The more Zuckerberg knows about you, the more media he will be able to bring you.

This is why I say Facebook’s real strategy is to know everything about everything. Of course they won’t get there. Why? Because there’s a freaky line.

Governments will soon step in to define the freaky line. They already have started that process and it varies from country to country. In Germany, for instance, the privacy laws are stricter than they are in the United States, so Facebook won’t be able to do some of its “studying” there.

Users will turn off apps, or change their behavior (I already have, for instance, I don’t listen to Lady Gaga on Spotify, I only listen to bands on Spotify that I want you to see).

Zuckerberg will have to change his behavior too. You’ll find them astutely moving the freaky line around. For instance, I really do agree with some of the criticisms about this “frictionless sharing” and I think Facebook (and the third-party developers) are going to have to give their users clear controls. Spotify simply isn’t doing enough here. Let’s explain why:

When I click play on a song in Spotify it instantly tells all of you that I’m listening to that song. For instance, right now, on my screen, Facebook is telling me that Mark Zuckerberg is listening to Something Goes Right… by SBTRKT on Rdio. But is he really listening to it? In my case, possibly not. Why? I might be scrubbing through a list of song titles trying to find a good one. I might be sampling music for 15 seconds a song. I might have just accidentally left Spotify on play. You don’t really know if I’ve listened to that song, or if I really like it.

I listen to Spotify a lot in the car. I’m not even in a good place to tell you anything about the music I’m listening to. I wish I had 30 seconds to hit next before you were told I was listening to it.

Same thing with the Washington Post. Just because I clicked on a link it goes out to all of you. Very viral, and very good for software developers but it will quickly devolve into noise. Facebook always does this with its platforms (starts noisy, then moves the freaky line back as users get pissed off at the noise showing up on their screens).

This is Zuckerberg’s brilliance. Other companies just aren’t willing to even try to move the freaky line forward in order to build a new media company.

On the other hand, I find this new “world’s biggest smallest village behavior” to be interesting. I’m listening to the same music that Mark Zuckerberg is right now. And everyone who is watching me on Facebook can do the same. THAT is an interesting shift in our human behavior.

How fast should Facebook move this freaky line? Well, they are spending months arguing with third-party developers about the verbs that will be allowed and what kind of controls they need to institute so as to not piss off too many users.

So, why am I all in?


I’ve found new music over the past two months.
I’ve found new news over the past two months.
I’ve learned stuff about my own patterns and can go back onto the Timeline and learn more.

How far will this go? Well, look at Zuckerberg’s own Timeline. He just got the new Jawbone Up. He posted “I can’t wait until I can sync this data directly to my timeline.”

To many of you that is WAY OVER the freaky line. After all, the Jawbone knows when you’ve slept. When you’ve walked someplace. It might, gasp, even know when you are having sex. And Zuckerberg wants to report everything to his timeline.

Do you get why? I do. He knows that the more Facebook knows about him the better the media will be that Facebook can deliver. Oh, yes, and of course the better the advertising will be too.

“Oh, Scoble, how can Facebook bring you better advertising?” Well, check out Etsy’s gift recommendation page. It’s driven by Facebook. It’s magical. It recommends gifts based on my friends and family’s Facebook behaviors. In the case of my producer, Rocky Barbanica, it’s VERY accurate. Too accurate to tell you here just what he’s into. Yes, he’s into the San Francisco 49ers, too, but he’s into a few other things I didn’t know about. Now I can get him that perfect gift. All because he shared his life with Facebook. UPDATE: Etsy wrote a blog post about how they made that.

Now, what will Facebook soon know about people because of Frictionless Sharing? A lot more than it knows today.

The freaky line is about to move. Are you ready?

UPDATE: this has gotten a big conversation going on Google+ here and on Facebook here.


109 thoughts on “The Facebook Freaky Line

  1. I’m only on facebook because family members and some friends are who don’t use any other service. The freaky line is pretty low for me. Time will tell if I dump it altogether like Dave


    1. I’m in exactly the same boat. I WANT to dump Facebook, but there are people I will lose touch with entirely if I do so. 

      To date my strategy has been to try and have a minimal FB presence, but that’s an increasingly difficult option. 


      1.  you wrote:”I WANT to dump Facebook, but there are people I will lose touch with entirely if I do so.”   Uhm.– Ever tried Email ?


      2. Seriously… my kids say they don’t use email. They think it is for old people. 

        They’re not entirely telling the truth, but email messages take days to propagate with them, they live in FB, so that’s instant. 


      3. Don’t you see something wrong with that statement – “If I get rid of facebook I risk losing touch with people I know” – dependance on facebook is what they rely on. If people don’t put in the effort to stay in touch with you using other means, it’s not really your problem.. I used to think facebook was a good thing, absolutely not anymore.


      1. Yes, you can edit your sharing preferences, but even if Facebook comes up with the 100% most perfect interface for doing this, its still going to result in a lot of situations where people are going to automatically share stuff they don’t want to. Facebook has to walk a fine line here because they obviously want people to have Facebook as part of their lives, they want businesses to get excited about developing exclusively on the Facebook platform so that people will spread the word about their products without relying on one of the services listed at for example, and they want people to be open about what is going on in their world. The walking a fine line part comes from opening up peoples lives too much and getting people to be cautious about Facebook. Right now, Facebook is getting a lot of criticism about its privacy practices from a relatively small percentage of people. They have to be careful about going too far, too fast, and not acclimating people to what is happening slowly. They’ll take 2 steps forward and sometimes one step back when public outcry gets to be too great. But history will “probably” view Zuckerberg as a visionary for recognizing this trend and helping open the gates for a more open society. Whether or not its a good thing is another subject entirely: but what isn’t up to question is whether or not its happening.


      2. His vision is to have his tentacles all over the web. It won’t work
        mainly because the majority of the people are retracting.
        2. His vision is to get revenues close to google’s. Ha ha .never gonna happen. In the process he’s scaring people. What would’ve happened if  he left the damn platform alone.? Would FB be at 1.5 billion by now ?
        Therefore “making more money “.  Fat chance all those programmers
        leaving something alone. ha ha ha / It’s comical. I’m not
        falling for it.The Walmart crowd might. I love that Scoble chose Disqus
        as opposed to FB comments .Which most people hate.


  2. Not ready at all. The more I read, the happies I am to have gone ahead and deleted my account. For most people, in my opinion, it’s just a gossip site.


  3. I understand FB’s desire to know more about each user and there is nothing wrong with that. My problem is with the path they have chosen for this. When I listen to any song on Spotify or read an article on Washington Post, I do not want all of it to be blasted off on my timeline. It just trivializes the whole sharing notion, deteriorates the S/N ratio. Why can’t FB just let users choose whether and what to share on their time line?

    Google is also collecting data en-masse through Android, but has a completely different approach towards collecting user information. Most of what Google collects is based on user behavior rather than through overt actions

    Has FB jumped the shark?


      1. They already have that. Spotify gives you a way not to share your music. Other apps (see what Washington Post’s Chairman said in the video above) you will have to simply decide whether or not to use them. Really easy.


      2. Robert I specifically remember getting a pop up about connecting to Facebook and allowing my stuff to be broadcasted so as long as ppl are not saying yes to that then there is no issue. This whole thing is a choice that people make so why is it such an issue??!!


      3. I stalk you. As a result, I found this post, and as a result, I ordered a JawboneUp (of course). I want to compare it to the Fitbit I had and discarded, to see if it does anything different. Me, I have NEVER cared who knew what about me. It’s very liberating, trust me. On the other hand, I’ve only had one employer, once. Intel. 14 months. That’s why I can afford not to care.


  4. Nicely written, explaining both sides of the story. 
    In my opinion, this simply crosses the privacy line too much. Facebook doesn’t care about privacy, I feel like they have the same mentality as a sypware developer, it just wants to spy spy spy and then share (sell) it with everybody. If it wasn’t for user outrage or government controls facebook would probably have made us install a plugin that tracks everything we do on a computer. Some could say that I should just use my privacy settings and get over it, but thats the biggest indicator of facebook’s mentality. Its privacy settings are so complicated no one even bothers or gets them to work. It simply doesn’t wants us to modify them. I think they will have problems with this because not everyone wants their friends list to know what their reading, listening to, or installing. If privacy setting were simple and easy to use I wouldn’t care but this isn’t the case.


  5. Thought-provoking until you get to the last couple of paragraphs. Zuck is not building a new media company. To be a new media company, Zuck needs to build something not reliant on advertising for revenue. Until then, it’s the same old media, just a bit smarter, more intrusive and, well, freaky. I’m all for better-targeted spam and junk mail; that’s a win. But let’s not confuse data collection to prop up advertising as a new kind of business model for media. Zuck hasn’t created anything that’s really new; what he’s done is improve upon 1990’s AOL. Not sure what’s better, but maybe that’s an angle for your next post 😉


    1. Huh? This is definitely a media company and, sorry, media companies will rely on two business models: you looking at ads and you buying things (affiliate fees). That won’t change anytime soon. What will change is whether you need to click on something, go somewhere else, to view the media. On Facebook the media comes to you. On Yahoo you have to go to the media. THAT is a HUGE difference!


    2. hUH? is right The Zuck as you put it has built a weird line. That can be reached externally through scrape bots that comes to close to home. NOt just spammers or email fraud. Facebook is merely slicing up the pie before going to market. The Washington post is pioneering some cool interesting technology were there is much to learn. Thanks for the article  @twitter-123615069:disqus  You are correct the personal device is coming.    


  6. I noticed a couple of times Facebook posting in my timeline that I listened to some music on Spotify 5 minutes ago while I never opened Spotify the whole day. What do you think about that?


  7. …kind of building a new real time empire based on any of your past, current behavior and predicting your media consuming pricing tag 🙂


  8. I don’t want to share everything not because of privacy issues, but because not everything is of equal importance.  I share things because I think they are important or interesting. It’s my way of saying look here.  If everything is shared then everything is of equal importance and it isn’t 


    1. You hit the nail on the head. By posting every time I click an aricle on WP or a song on Spotify it provides zero knowledge about whether I liked that song or not. If Mr. Scoble feels he found new music because of stalking his friends’ timelines, that’s a good point but what he fails to tell us is how much of that “discovered” music was something he ended up liking? No use listening to all the junk music my friend was stumbling over to get to something he really liked. To me all the new activity from apps is Noise and adds nothing meaningful to my experience.


  9. I’m an
    early adopter and I don’t think I’m conservative, I’m very open minded but I
    think Facebook cross a line. It’s the beacon project with a new package. You
    may call it beacon 2.0. Now Facebook is pack with nonsense. I simply don’t like
    it because it is not smart sharing. It’s not because I read or listen something
    that it’s good or the world should know about it.

    This week
    end something really kept my attention. I saw an article from yahoo news on my
    timeline. I clicked it and they asked me to install an app to read the article.
    I didn’t do it. At this point I connected all the dots. Facebook is the next
    advertising company. They are ready to “sell “exactly what I like to the
    highest bidder. That’s the ultimate plan. It’s even better than keywords. That
    might be the reason Google began Google +.

    I get it.

     It might be the coolest thing in the world but
    people need more control. This is the main reason I see more and more ex Facebook
    users on twitter or tumblr. I think Facebook is killing his product by doing too
    much too fast. It might be the ultimate destination but I’m not sure people are
    ready or want that.

    Since they
    put the thicker, I noticed that people share less or they don’t or they simply
    do not use Facebook like before or close their account.

    There’s a
    trend like it or not, unfortunately Facebook is not the best company to explain
    their vision clearly.


  10. The fact of the matter is, Facebook have provided these features for those who wish to use them, and if someone doesn’t wish to use them, they don’t have to. If someone wishes to hide all feed stories by The Washington Post Social Reader or Spotify, they can, and they won’t see those stories in their News Feed or Ticker. If someone wishes to not use any of these Open Graph apps, they can. Combining the two aforementioned ways of using Facebook (along with the user hiding any other apps that jump on the Open Graph bandwagon from their News Feed) will ensure that the user doesn’t ever have to view or interact with any of the features the Open Graph provides. So why are people complaining? The features are there for those of us who love them (I’m one of the users that absolutely loves the frictionless sharing!)

    Facebook have even provided users with a way to use the Open Graph apps, but ensure no one can see how they interact with those apps. One can change the privacy settings of any Open Graph app to ensure the app shares with only them if they wish, thus ensuring none of their friends nor the public can view their activity.


      1. No not exactly – I am modifying my behavior like you said – I dont sign up for something as neat as the post reader – I logout of Yahoo news before I start reading up stuff – I turned off my twitter feed to Fb – I dont connect my Spotify account to Fb – I go through a lot of trouble to avoid my life being tracked – 


  11. ok i do not mind most of this honestly, what is the deal with ppl not liking what music u listen to being broadcasted anyways??!! seriously, do your friends and family not know what music you listen to hmm…i bet they do, so why is this such a big deal and even if they don’t its music ppl, its not thee most secretive part of your life, are you that embarrassed by the music you listen to, if so maybe you have self esteem issues. and the stuff you read, umm…when u r sitting in a public place reading a book or a newspaper u r doing exactly what facebook does online, broadcasting what your reading and again, that is not thee most private thing about u, unless ur reading porn it should not be an issue, its a free world and u r allowed to read w/e u want regardless of what anyone including ur employer thinks about it, if your friends and family and your employer don’t like it well tell them to stfu, thats what i would do. but what really gets me is i remember when i authorized spotify and the washington news reader to connect to facebook and it asked me if all of it was ok to be broadcasted, so lets back track a sec on that last sentence, focus on a particular word, the word AUTHORIZED, that means I said YES to ALLOWING spotify and washington news reader to broadcast my stuff, it did not just do it on its own so please for the love of God quit whining about stuff you ALLOWED to happen! seriously grow up and take some danged responsibility for your actions ppl, its called being an adult!


  12. @Scobleizer:disqus Let me get this straight.  You changed YOUR behavior in listening to music because you didn’t want people to know you listed to Lady Gaga?  What’s wrong with this picture?!  I wouldn’t change what music I listen to for anybody.  This is one of the reasons I won’t install any apps on Facebook, play any games or do anything else that is tied to Facebook- I don’t need or want any of my family or friends to be bombarded with the spam of every little detail of everything I do on a minute by minute basis.

    Guess I’m just not anywhere near narcissistic enough to ever be all in on something like this.

    BUT, great article nonetheless.


    1. Yes, we change our behavior all the time depending on who is listening. If I know I’m on stage in front of 1,000 people I will behave differently than if I’m at a bar with you in Amsterdam.

      For me it’s about a whole lot more than narcissism. I have other outlets to serve that. 🙂


      1. I agree we change our behavior all the time depending on who is listening, but now you’re saying there is never any time you can have anymore for yourself and that is my biggest problem.  If you go on facebook now you have to be “on”, i.e. visiting a site at home before you go to bed means people are watching you and what you do so you need to make sure you’re reading the right articles and listening to the right music.  That just doesn’t sound very fun for me, and that’s not very “real” of us.  The more connected we get the more fake we are going to get.

        If not narcissism what do you call it?  This, to me, goes against everything you’ve been saying for the last couple years of you’re as open and sharing and broadcast as much about yourself as possible.  Now we find out what you’ve been meaning is that you try and broadcast this image of yourself that you want others to think is you, and what I’ve been watching and reading about you for the past couple years isn’t completely true.  It just shows that even someone like you needs some privacy and you do the same thing as everyone else.


  13. If Facebook’s model is still reliant on a look/buy model, it is not a new kind of media company. Is it delivering the look/buy differently? Sure. But the model is still the same as an old school media company: We’ll put content in front of you, we’ll pepper it with ads that you may or may (likely) not pay attention to. Just curious if you are arguing that that model is a good model. The Scoble I know would be pushing for a bigger, more future-like business model change 🙂  BTW, not arguing that it will take time, but I do believe the ad-supported media model is ripe for disruption/innovation. Also, not arguing your angle on the freaky line; you are spot-on.


  14. Lol, this article is written with the notion that by doing these things Facebook is improving our lives in some way. It isn’t. We are happiest when we have close, meaningful relationships with the people in our lives – we don’t need a social platform to publicly share our personal information in order to achieve that goal. 

    The best thing that facebook aims to do is reduce the amount of non-targeted advertising I see, while coming at the cost of making every aspect of my life trackable and recorded for all time. That’s a heavy price to pay just to reduce annoying ads.


  15. My take on Facebook is similar to my take on a couple of other successful US brands. People liked McDonald’s for its convenience, but in reality it has muddied the individuality of towns around the world as have Starbucks et al. and the idea that they have solved employment problems is nonsense, because before them, were independent businesses with the profits staying local not lining the pockets of Uncle Sam. The same applies to Facebook. It is gradually eroding the individuality of local or unique media and content creation and making it typically homogeneous. Likewise I personally think the noble art of journalism is mired in more bs and less validity than ever before too and the only real way of drawing meaningful perspectives is to read five times as many pieces on the same thing because you can no longer trust any one single brand.

    I love the idea of being able to buy a burger, coke or cup of coffee and know it’ll be reliable. But does it make the world a better place? No, not from my perspective. I would prefer Italy to stay feeling Italian, Paris Parisian and east coast girls to stay being different to west coast girls. Same with Facebook. I don’t buy the altruism promise of awesome consumer Nirvana. No I just think it’s just another big US brand sucking the life out of individuality and global diversity whilst telling us it’s good for us.

    Maybe if they had worked a little harder to make people trust them things might be different, but a diet of media solely via Facebook is like living entirely on McDonald’s and Starbucks. No thanks…


  16. Well, I wish the way it would work is this: Keep Facebook oversharing if it must to push media to you and scrape more data. That’s the business model, I get it. But then make each individual app opt-in. For example, if *I* don’t have Spotify and haven’t opted into Spotify, don’t tell me when all my friends are yammering about what they are listening to on Spotify. I don’t care. If I don’t have Runnify or whatever it was that tells us when you exercise, then I don’t hear that. If I don’t have the Washpo ap downloaded, it doesn’t bother me, etc. That’s all. Don’t delete all of Facebook just to get rid of a few noisy apps and their downloaders.


  17. I love it when the guy says ” we are not asking much data from users..”  Social media is about sharing, as long as they have a option to mute the noise , am happy with it.  It’s  a way of discovering new things.


  18. In addition to the very valid debate on privacy, isn’t anyone else also concerned about clutter? The more “junk” I have to sift through in any given stream (not just Facebook’s), the less I’m apt to pay attention to or ferret out the best nuggets from the junk.  And if Facebook wants to be effective as an ad platform, it’s got to ensure it has people’s attention. Why are we not surprised that banners and email don’t perform like they once did.  It’s not only about being relevant — it’s about capturing the user’s attention when they’re open to being “distracted.”


  19. I love the new sharing.  Yahoo and WaPo are getting way more traffic and reading by me.  It did kinda bother me I was reading about the Penn State scandal and theres this pedophilia post from it now on my wall – that kinda made me wonder a little.  It is kinda a little weird.  I suppose as long as porn sites are not included we should be okay.  Other wise then it truly will be FREAKY!  Are you:


  20. What’s coming to us is more noise.  I don’t want to know everything you read or listen to.  I want to know what you like or love out of that. Multiply that noise times all I follow.  I want what they like or love from each so as to pick through that stuff. Not everything from everyone. It’s way too much. It’s not differentiating that and it’s certainly not listening to my inputs on that. 


  21. You’re absolutely wrong. I’ve shared stuff that I don’t know my friends will be interested in and I get replies back. I’ve also tried many new things over the past two months because of these new features. Truth is they are bringing a new form of serendipity into my life.


    1. How incredibly arrogant you are. That poster describes their personal preferences for their own set of interactions and you dismiss them as “wrong”, justifying yourself in terms of your own life.


  22. btw in this context, ‘Closed’ means hard coded links from 3rd party sites to that other companies can’t leverage or get access to. AKA Google or anyone else can’t crawl it.


  23. We are so lucky Evernote bought Skitch, not Facebook… Imagine if it just posted screenshots of whatever you were looking at whenever the web browser happened to be on a Facebook powered site.  Have you read that Asimov short story, “The Dead Past” ?   “Goodbye privacy, hello fishbowl” was the punchline… Everyone remotely surveying everyone else, a Pareto optimum of sharing.  At the same time, well, if you don’t like Facebook, don’t go.


  24. (1) Click interesting link via Facebook
    (2) Get message about having to install something first
    (3) Don’t trust Facebook enough to be sure it’s not a trojan, so don’t install
    (4) Copy text into Google and find the item via search

    Big step backwards from just clicking the link and seeing the item


  25. too linear, too surface, mistakes quantity for quality … and is STILL an advertising/data play … no way can i feel facebook is about me or my friends, it is ALWAYS about them.


  26. How would the “freaky line” move for you if Facebook took a more nuanced view of your behavior?

    For example, a chartbeat-like reading/writing metric could lead to something like, “Robert Scoble is *closely* reading Ex-MySpace CEO resigns as Zynga executive…”, or “Mark Zuckerberg is commenting on”.This would filter out the one-offs and provide a much more valuable signal to your friends. Of course, this value could be captured.

    Does this move the line for you?


  27. The growing danger of the misuse of our data. Shouldn’t our own personal data be considered private property?  If you haven’t checked out the Filter Bubble by Eli Pariser, view the TED talk and then if interested read the book:                                       

    And here is a glimpse of the future of what will be happening to our personal data if we don’t insist on stringent measures to protect ourselves (including financial penalties for those who violate our trust) and demand complete transparency.  After all it is our personal data:



  28. I think there are 2 issues with Frictionless sharing:

    1/ There is no context attached to the sharing.  Items I just use and love are shared equally.  I think the real value in social sharing is distinguishing between these.  I consume alot of media but not all these would receive a recommendation from me.  The current approach will generate alot of noise but very little value.

    2/ The handling for users that opt-out of the Frictionless sharing right now is horrible.  I should be able to tell FB I don’t want to enable Frictionless sharing and still get immediate access to content.  Right now the focus on enabling sharing puts a number of hurdles in place to access sharing.  

    Also as a generally rule I think more appropriate to attempt to explore both sides.  Each side of the  over-share and share nothing experience are important.  Clearly if your only going to explore one end of the experience you limiting your perspective…


  29. This is NOT a new Media company Zuckerberg is building. Same old model, same old plan. For five years I have been telling friends & anyone who would allow me to “share” with them that THIS PRECISE DIRECTION of Facebook was in the works.  It was just a matter of technology and faster internet speeds, more bandwidth, better browsers, faster computers to bring it to pass.

    Facebook has wanted for years to BE your internet experience, to BE your World.

    For altruistic, let’s all love each other purposes?  Hardly.

    Money and more money and then gobs of money along with dominance and ubiquity and world leaders bowing down at Facebook’s feet. Think about it. President Obama did not summon Zuckerberg– Obama went to Media Mecca to pay tribute like visiting kings of old.

    The model has always been to insinuate itself into every aspect of your life so that advertisers and marketers will not question the value of the information they are buying.  One stop shopping for sellers. They don’t leave Facebook with a database to take and develop a new media strategy on the outside. They use Facebook itself and buy the ability to precisely target potential new clients or customers.

    And for those of you who raise the point, well, how does Facebook and its App partners really “know” that you like or don’t like something just because you read it, listen to it, explore it?  Well, the obvious answer is that Facebook sees your concern the same way. And they are trying earnestly to further monitor your life, actions, and emotions.

    Facebook is most assuredly dreaming up the technology to monitor your respiration, your pulse rate, your pupil dilation, your very remarks, your facial expressions in real time to synch with what you are doing at every moment.

    And Mark Zuckerberg is trying to suck you in by being the public guinea pig to show you that it doesn’t hurt!  This is why he posts that he can’t wait to get Jawbone activated and synched. He wants to drag you down the slippery slope of technological biometric data gathering for HIS PROFIT.

    Robert Scoble is evangelizing for this because it simultaneously promotes his own business interests This is the line Scoble has drawn for himself, just this side of freaky because it advances his own personal interests to be a media draw for his opinions.

    Where Facebook is heading, has already determined to head, is to utterly monopolize media and become with insistence on partnering Apps that demand a Facebook entry fee to see, hear, or join to become a James Bondian villain who takes over the world and demands tribute from every corner of the globe.

    It is simply evil in its insidiousness and will become the best argument to decry the perversion that has become American style Capitalism.  Profit, profit, above all interests. 

    When we turn over ALL of our privacy from cradle to grave to Facebook then we will become shells of human beings. The human being REQUIRES privacy to think, act, make mistakes, explore, ruminate, cogitate, grow.

    We have already seen the beginning of the ugliness with “sharing” so much.  Lives ruined. People’s mistakes in youth haunting them around the world forever because the internet SHARES and perpetuates what time and locality used to allow to fade away and deservedly so.

    Facebook has already trivialized to near extinction the term “Friend”. Once the sweetest word that encapsulated a realm of emotions and appreciation for the dearest of life’s experiences: Friendship.

    For most of the younger Facebook generation the word “friend” can no longer begin with such rich and positive connotations. It has been forever devalued and robbed of meaning be the Facebook ubiquity of “Friend”.

    Same can be said for Sharing.

    Wanting to broadcast everything you do every minute is not sharing. It is narcissism.


  30. Jeez Robert, you flip flop more than Mitt Romney.  It was just a month or so ago on Google+ you were telling me how awful it is to aggregate a feed in your social network.  Do you ever see a parade you don’t jump in front of?


  31. I very much like and appreciate Facebook for what it does: connect people. However, Yahoo! does still have a role to play, and marketplace trends support this view: to provide valuable, reliable content of interest to content communities. As I have written in a recent post, this is why I am not in favour of Microsoft buying Yahoo! (they recently signed a confidentiality agreement).


  32. Great article there !
    Even with apps like spotify , washingtonpost n
    others – ppl will publish what they want others to see .. its not who
    they are or what they like , its what they want to project ! if above is
    the basis for FB to bring media to users , its no good ! Like molly wood said in her article ..sharing should be conscious and thoughtful else opengraph will just make our feeds noisy !


  33. This is something that is still a little bit murky for me. Does it mean that even if I’m logged out, people can see everything that I click online or is it only applicable to sites that my account are syncd with FB?!


  34. I am also, ‘all-in’ on many levels. Because like you Mr. Scoble, ‘new’ isn’t what scares me, me being afraid of change WOULD scare me. Those on my FB that matter, know me well enough to know what’s going on in my world. Those on my FB that don’t know me, don’t matter. What the public can and can not handle is for them to determine, not me.


  35. Not just future news sites should have the social element but merchants and retailers should also follow suit. A shrewed merchant/retailer can and should utilize the social element in their blogs or ecommerce sites to push interest in their product or service. Having customers freely give you access to their likes is a no brainer way to find out what products and services they respond to and which products and services they have no interest in. This way merchants and retailers can spend their money on tailored commercials, ads, products and services that they know will be well received.


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