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Facebook Launches Location Based Product 130

Posted by samzenpus
from the friends-should-already-know-where-you-are dept.
adeelarshad82 writes "Facebook officially launched its 'Places' location-based product, backed by seeming rivals Foursquare and Gowalla. Facebook had been expected to announce a location service ever since it announced the press conference earlier this week. The Places service officially goes live August 19, although an iPhone app will go live on the August 18. According to Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook Places has been in development for several months. It had three goals, he said: helping share where you are in a nice and social way, to see who's around you, and just discover new and cool places to visit in the future."
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Facebook Launches Location Based Product

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  • And... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Spad (470073) <slashdotNO@SPAMspad.co.uk> on Thursday August 19, 2010 @07:58AM (#33299688) Homepage

    And so we know exactly where you are all the time and which adverts to serve you.

    • +1 Minority Report!

    • Re:And... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:30AM (#33299898)
      No of course not! Really! This system would never get used for such an intrusive advertising technique! It is just to better connect you and your friends!

      18 months later, Facebook announces a new advertising platform...
    • by LordKronos (470910) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @09:30AM (#33300492) Homepage

      I can understand your concern about the first half, but about the second half....why are so many people always offended by the notion of targeted advertising? People always seem to get mad about the possibility that the ads they see might actually be relevant to them. Why is this so terrible? You'd rather see ads for tampons and the AARP instead of seeing one for a restaurant that is in your area? The only possible reason I can see to be offended is because you have no will power to resist the messages of advertiser, and if they start targeting you with relevant ads then you are going to rush out and buy everything they tell you to. If that's the case, I don't think the biggest concern is targeted advertising.

      • by Spad (470073)

        I have no concern about targeted advertising, though I understand why people dislike it when it follows you beyond its original context (You visited the abortion clinic last week, perhaps you'd like some adverts for other abortion clinics splattered all over your Facebook page, for example); it was more a case of the motivations for offering the service (i.e. More money, obviously).

        • by Americano (920576)

          Except you would have to specifically check in from the abortion clinic. If you don't check in, then how are they going to know that you were at an abortion clinic?

          And if you do check in, maybe you want people to know you're there, and also don't mind getting the occasional advertisement for "abortion clinics near you right now," just in case you ever get the urge to have one on a whim - because we all know that elective abortions are the new trucker hat for the hipster set.

          Do you see how STUPID and basele

      • by xgr3gx (1068984)

        I agree - while targeted ads can be fake and annoying (Are you a 30 year old dad who works in the IT industry and likes classic cars?) Holy crap, that's me! I must click on that ad!
        I would be nice to be walking around some place and see an ad for free appetizers and 1/2 price pints at a bar with in a few blocks.

        • I would be nice to be walking around some place and see an ad for free appetizers and 1/2 price pints at a bar with in a few blocks.

          A bit later you get ads for a cab service after you stay at the bar too long...
          And then an email goes to the DUI Task Force when you don't avail yourself of the proffered taxi ride...

      • The problem isn't the targeted advertising, it's the tracking.

        I have absolutely no problem if an advertiser uses my info to display relevant ads.

        I do have a problem with how they get that information and what they do with it after they display the ad.

        If a targeted ad has a better response rate than a random ad, then the information used to generate that targeted ad has value; my information is valuable. Now, if ad agencies, companies I do business with, and data wholesalers are all making money off of MY in

      • Re:And... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by gstoddart (321705) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @12:15PM (#33302936) Homepage

        I can understand your concern about the first half, but about the second half....why are so many people always offended by the notion of targeted advertising? People always seem to get mad about the possibility that the ads they see might actually be relevant to them. Why is this so terrible?

        Because, the amount of information a company knows about you in order to do targeted advertising is bordering on the scary.

        The way they collect that information continues to be opaque, and likely spread across a large number of sources, and far too much of your personal life can be cross-referenced without people realizing it. The fact that this information gets collected, and the routinely sold means that a lot of your personal/lifestyle/spending information is just out there for people to use, abuse, or just plain exploit.

        Voluntarily signing up on Facebook so I can tell everybody where I am, what I'm doing, and the names and addresses of everybody I know is like signing up for Big Brother, only with some stupid game involving farming to placate the masses. Some of this stuff used to be considered confidential, and places like banks would guard it. Now, every schmuck with a customer card willingly hands over boatloads of personal information by associating a customer number with everything they buy.

        I mean, seriously, if you go for a prescription to clear up an "infection of a personal nature", do you want to be inundated with ads for anti-itch cream, condoms, yeast infections, incontinence products, free clinics and whatnot? It's like when people say "if you have nothing to hide, why do you have secrets?" -- some information is personal, and isn't really intended to be spread around to everybody.

        This really has to be a generational thing -- a lot of geeks used to be rabid privacy nuts. Now everybody is willing to publish all of this stuff onto Facebook like it's normal for the world to know what gotchies you're wearing, when you've got an itch, and the results of your latest medical tests.

        • by Americano (920576)

          I mean, seriously, if you go for a prescription to clear up an "infection of a personal nature", do you want to be inundated with ads for anti-itch cream, condoms, yeast infections, incontinence products, free clinics and whatnot? It's like when people say "if you have nothing to hide, why do you have secrets?" -- some information is personal, and isn't really intended to be spread around to everybody.

          Good thing this isn't happening, then, right? FUD.

          Your scenario has nothing to do with "location awareness

          • by gstoddart (321705)

            Your scenario has nothing to do with "location awareness,"

            So, if you read the part of the post where I quoted the poster saying "why are so many people always offended by the notion of targeted advertising? " ...

            You might realize I'm not specifically discussing Facebook. I am, in fact, saying why I object to targeted advertising in a broader sense.

            Because it has a really bad habit of being subject to scope creep and sale of this information to other people, who aggregate it with even more data, and come up

            • by Americano (920576)

              Yes, when people have the opportunity to behave like fools in public, they will sometimes do that. If you make something public knowledge, it is your fault, not Facebook's, or Google's or the pharmacy's.

              The scenario you are giving is a SPECIFICALLY PROTECTED piece of information that will never legally be disclosed to an advertising agency anyway. And that's the best argument you can come up with against targeted advertising "in a broader sense"? That's why it's FUD, and that's why your point fails. If

            • This is what I really hate: http://www.exactsalesleads.com/mortgage-lists.html [exactsalesleads.com] A marketer can't pull my credit report without my permission, but if he buys enough of these mailing lists, he will have the same information anyway. I know this has nothing to do with Facebook, but when infomation gathering systems are designed, the privacy measures always and by design leave a way for "private" info to leak out to someone willing to pay.

              I was creeped out the first time Google Maps on my phone told me wher
              • This is what I really hate:

                http://www.exactsalesleads.com/mortgage-lists.html [exactsalesleads.com]

                A marketer can't pull my credit report without my permission, but if he buys enough of these mailing lists, he will have the same information anyway.

                Apparently you have no clue about that which you are linking. From the linked page:

                We specialize in pulling your leads to meet the requirements of any individual loan program's criteria for funding by using "soft credit inquiries" from the major credit bureaus.

                A soft pull IS a pull of your credit report. However, it doesn't give them any of the details of your report, other than that it meets some broad criteria. They ask for all people whose credit score is over 700, have had a mortgage for 3+ years withou

                • I know that. And they can do it without my permission. That's my point. So WTF is yours?
                  • I know that. And they can do it without my permission. That's my point. So WTF is yours?

                    My point is, you said

                    A marketer can't pull my credit report without my permission, but if he buys enough of these mailing lists, he will have the same information anyway

                    . In other words, you think buying these reports will get him the information on your credit report, but that is false. These are generated from credit reports but contain no data other than your contact info. No matter if he buys a million of these reports, he will get no more than the contact info. That's WTF my point is. You said something blatantly false (and then get snarky with me when I point it out and you fail to realize it)

                    • they also know the criteria used to prepare the list. You buy the lists, then see who pops up on more than one list. You might not know every detail of his credit report, but if you buy lists of people in a certain income bracket, with a certain credit score, and a few others, (I think there were 20 possible criteria in the ad) you don't need to pull the complete report to have a very good understanding of the financial situation of someone who appears on multiple lists. They might not pull a report on
                    • Too bad that income, DUI convictions, rental information**, etc is NOT information that is on credit reports. If you want to be concerned about that sort of stuff being pulled from other sources, that is fine. But your point (the one which I was addressing) was about getting info that is on your CREDIT REPORT, and none of the stuff you are talking about has anything to do with your credit report info. Knowing the criteria used to generate the list doesn't help. A soft pull is incredibly lossy. You get a ver

      • Re:And... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by JustinOpinion (1246824) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @12:44PM (#33303326)

        People always seem to get mad about the possibility that the ads they see might actually be relevant to them.

        It's worth remembering that what the viewer considers relevant and what the advertiser considers targeted are not the same thing. You may be interested in computers and sci-fi, but that doesn't mean they will only show you ads for those products. Advertisers try to hit middle-ground in viewers. It's true that it's a waste of their money to try to advertise a product to you that you will never buy (e.g. baby products to people without kids). But they also don't really want to waste advertising to die-hard fans and aficionados, who will already buy those products (of course they need to keep the fans aware of the products to some extent). Advertising dollars do the most good for the group of fence-sitters: people who might or might not purchase the product. This means that if the advertisers are doing their job right of targeting you on products that you're "on the fence" about, then you'll get a bunch of ads for things you don't quite want. In other words, stuff that is only semi-relevant.

        Also worth remember is that quite a bit of advertising has to do with just getting consumers to remember brand names. People always bring up the "I'm a guy--I don't need to see ads for tampons!" but that's actually a case where some advertising to men can make a difference. Guys don't regularly buy tampons, but on the few occasions that they do (girlfriend has just run out and desperately needs more), they want you to walk into the drugstore and, because you're unsure of what to buy, gravitate towards their well-recognized brand ("No boyfriend ever got dumped for buying Tampax")...

        Again, it may not be relevant for you to see Tampax ads, but the company certainly wants you to recognize the brand.

        The only possible reason I can see to be offended is because you have no will power to resist the messages of advertiser

        You're implying that only weak-willed people are affected by ads (implicitly, that you are able to 'resist'). People are more affected by advertising that they realize or would care to admit. If you are among those who are good at spotting crap and not buying it (e.g. making a decision not to buy from companies that make ridiculous claims in their commercials), then properly targeted ads would instead show you the much more subtle kinds of advertising (again, building-up brand recognition and brand image has a large but typically unnoticed effect on your shopping behavior).

        I'm not saying that people are slaves to marketing. You can certainly rise above the ads to some extent. But conversely it is effectively impossible not to be somewhat affected by advertising.

        This is not to say that I think people should be deathly afraid of targeted ads. But let's at least recognize the dangers (or even just nuisances) they present.

        • This is not to say that I think people should be deathly afraid of targeted ads. But let's at least recognize the dangers (or even just nuisances) they present.

          Sorry, but I'm not quite seeing what the danger or nuisance is. You made a case about how non-targeted are good for building name recognition, which kind of even goes against the idea that targeted ads are so much worse. Everything else you've said basically comes back to the "I'm powerless to resist the calls of advertisers, and that offends me" type of argument.

      • why are so many people always offended by the notion of targeted advertising?

        Well, for one, targeted advertising implies that we lose some of our privacy; those of us who still think privacy is worth having find that to be problematic. There is also a bit of a notion that advertisers believe we do not know what we are looking for, and that we need them to tell us. I know what I need and what I want, and I do not need anyone's trend tracking algorithms to tell me what I should be buying. If I am looking for restaurants, I can find a restaurant guide. Why do I need a computer te

      • by MobyDisk (75490) *

        Because it is harder to filter out. Advertising is so prevalent these days it almost makes me want to join the Amish. I know for a fact that there is an area of my brain dedicated to filtering them out. I don't want that area getting any bigger - there's better things to do with those brain cells.

    • by Americano (920576)

      Correction: "We know exactly where you are when you check in on your GPS-enabled mobile device which is running our app which you specifically had to load, open, and click "Check In" on, and that is the only time we know where you are."

      Unless you're really suggesting that this app is transmitting a constant stream of GPS location data back to Facebook?

      As far as what advertisements to serve me, how is that a problem? Seeing information about businesses near your current location is a bad thing, exactly how

  • Turn it Off (Score:5, Informative)

    by BoldAC (735721) * on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:01AM (#33299706)

    I turned this off as soon as I could.

    http://www.tech-recipes.com/rx/7046/how-to-prevent-being-checked-into-facebook-places-privacy/ [tech-recipes.com]

    I get social media. I really like most of it. However, I enjoy my fancy stereo and big screen TV too much to let people know when I am out of town or out of my house.

    "Oh, I know that dude. He just bought a fat entertainment system and now his facebook says he's out of town for a month. Woot!"

    No thanks.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      What? It is enabled by default?

      Again?

      When is Facebook going to learn?

      • Re:Turn it Off (Score:5, Insightful)

        by LordKronos (470910) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @09:32AM (#33300530) Homepage

        What? It is enabled by default?

        Again?

        When is Facebook going to learn?

        What?
        You actually thought facebook was going to reasonable in their actions regarding privacy?
        Again?
        When are you going to learn?

      • by Spad (470073)

        When it's worth their while to do so.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Americano (920576)

        It inherits the same sharing permissions as who can see your contact info. I have contact info set to "friends only", and "places I check in" now also shows up as "Friends only".

        Of course, you ALSO HAVE TO ACTUALLY CHECK IN on a mobile device for any of this to be relevant, as well.

        Unless you make a habit of friending people on Facebook who you expect to rob you, I'm really not certain I see the big issue; If you make a habit of leaving your Facebook info open to the world, then "oh noes dey robbin mah ap

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Of course, you ALSO HAVE TO ACTUALLY CHECK IN on a mobile device for any of this to be relevant, as well.

          Apparently that isn't quite true. The link he provided [tech-recipes.com] implies that people can check on behalf of their friends. See items 9 and 10.

          • by Americano (920576)

            Not sure how that setting defaults - it's ambiguous, and I haven't seen an explanation of it yet, whether or not it's something you have to explicitly opt-in or opt-out of.

            Knowing facebook, you probably have to opt-out. However, it still requires you or someone you've friended to check you in from their mobile device before any of these concerns are relevant in the least.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by BobZee1 (1065450)
      it seems to me that it is ALWAYS someone you know that decides to "borrow" all of your things while you are away from home. now that i have done what i can to remove all "friends" from my life, my belongings tend to stay where i left them.
    • Re:Turn it Off (Score:5, Informative)

      by slasho81 (455509) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:25AM (#33299860)
      Oblig. link [pleaserobme.com]
    • Re:Turn it Off (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Dominic (3849) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:26AM (#33299870) Homepage

      Yeah, because this is exactly what burglars have been waiting for! Except it isn't. Most people with stuff worth stealing have jobs, so burglars just have to go to your house in office hours. They're not going to be looking at Facebook.

      Anyway, it's just your friends who can see this. If you are friends with people who will steal with you then you have other problems.

      • by Thanshin (1188877)

        Anyway, it's just your friends who can see this.

        Indeed, and it's just impossible that anyone could ever get friend access to your facebook account. It would take people in some random site like, totally from the top of my head, 4chan, many, many long minutes.

        • by vlueboy (1799360)

          Indeed, and it's just impossible that anyone could ever get friend access to your facebook account. It would take people in some random site like, totally from the top of my head, 4chan, many, many long minutes.

          Sarcasm noted. Indeed, "friends" is probably all that's needed to be approached by the press [probably for free too and without any citation] to unlock a friend's full-resolution photograph or two. I'm pretty sure the Time Square, NY would-be bomber a few months ago didn't just have a public page for everyone to see, when he went and messed up the bombing and got put to jail away from his facebook account.

          It's terrifying that the press doesn't even need a police photo anymore... they post one of your own lo

      • by Monoman (8745)

        First: Burglers can assume you aren't home during office hours but they may be wrong. Some folks work nights so smart ones would do some reconn work.
        Second: There is an option to share your location with Everyone.
        Third: There is an option that lets your friends tell others your location.

    • by psoriac (81188)

      On a slightly surprising note, I found that the 'Include me in "People Here Now" after I check in' option defaulted to disabled. At least they got 1/2 right, and to be honest, if you only friended people who were really your friends, letting them check you into places isn't such a horrible thing.

    • wtf... having a facebook account means having to check the privacy settings every other day to disable whatever new feature (or re-labeled old feature) is open-by-default this week...
    • by vanyel (28049) *

      So I leave a facebook window open at both home and work. Not seeing how places is useful, much less a concern...

  • this is how... (Score:5, Informative)

    by polle404 (727386) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:04AM (#33299726)
    account -> privacy -> Customize settings

    change "Places I check in" to "only me"
    and uncheck "enable" in "Include me in "People Here Now" after I check in"
    and set "Friends can check me in to Places" to "disabled"


    and you're back to good ol' privacy-invading facebook as you know it.

    • Alternative (Score:5, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:46AM (#33300038)

      Login to facebook
      http://www.facebook.com/help/contact.php?show_form=delete_account
      Complete CAPTCHA
      Do not login or connect with your Facebook account for 14 days.

      You'll wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe

  • and abstracted it to 'things'...

  • Uses (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Thanshin (1188877) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:09AM (#33299760)

    ...And to target the space laser, of course. We would hate to vaporize the wrong person."

    • by Thanshin (1188877)

      Let's see. The post was modded insightful because:

      1 - Funny doesn't give karma.
      2 - Modders actually believe a space laser can target someone just because he connected his GPS phone.
      3 - Modders know a space laser can target someone just because he connected his GPS phone.
      4 - Modders are the ones who use the space laser and want the snitch to repost so they can target hi #%!@#70824645[CARRIER LOST] ...

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by ZeroExistenZ (721849)

        You know too much...

        Can I suggest you a nice locationbased facebook game? You can share your score with your friends and grandmother!! FOR FREE!

      • 5 - Thanshin (1188877)* has a few alternate SlashDot accounts which currently have mod points, and decided to reward him/herself with a little karma.

        *don't get mad, I'm just busting your chops.

        ;-)
  • ...you are anywhere else but the US it seems. I hate that.

    arse biscuits.

  • Hmmmm... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by shabble (90296) <qkjj13x02@sneakemail.com> on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:14AM (#33299790)

    So then, does this mean your stalkers will know where you are, and your local burglar will know where you aren't?

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      ...and your spouse will know which ex's house you're at.

  • by hessian (467078) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:14AM (#33299800) Homepage Journal

    Apropos of this:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/google/7951269/Young-will-have-to-change-names-to-escape-cyber-past-warns-Googles-Eric-Schmidt.html [telegraph.co.uk]

    I don't know why anyone would put any real data into a service like Facebook.

    It's a large, profit-driven, high-margin corporation. You wouldn't tell McDonald's or Coca-Cola what your interests are, where you live, YOUR POLITICAL OPINIONS, who your parents are and who you want to date, would you?

    Stay anonymous. Fill in entertaining bullshit when they ask you personal questions. They think I'm a gay Black Christian Libertarian who wants legal pot and likes chinchillas.

    • by Tim C (15259) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:40AM (#33299968)

      I don't know why anyone would put any real data into a service like Facebook.

      Because I have actual real-life friends on Facebook, and as I am interested in seeing what they're up to from time to time, I assume that that interest is reciprocated. I have also made new friends on Facebook and similar sites, some of which have become genuine, real life friends.

      Facebook gets useful demographic data about me that they use to target adverts at me (that I block and/or ignore), I get to keep in touch with friends more easily (especially ones that are geographically distant) and sometimes make new ones. To me, I come off best in that trade. Your mileage may (and clearly does) vary.

      • by BitZtream (692029)

        Because I have actual real-life friends on Facebook, and as I am interested in seeing what they're up to from time to time, I assume that that interest is reciprocated. I have also made new friends on Facebook and similar sites, some of which have become genuine, real life friends.

        Yea, sure you do. Thats why you go so out of your way to keep in touch with them ...

        If you had real friends, you would be a part of thier lives and keep up with them without facebook.

        What you and your friends have is a emotional/

    • by PmaxII (1599235)
      Man... then they'll think you are me .....
    • by Thanshin (1188877)

      Stay anonymous. Fill in entertaining bullshit when they ask you personal questions. They think I'm a gay Black Christian Libertarian who wants legal pot and likes chinchillas.

      Ok, ok, I get it. No need to be rude.

      I'll sell my pot and chinchillas to someone who actually wants them.

    • by houghi (78078) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @09:01AM (#33300162)

      I don't know why anyone would put any real data into a service like Facebook.

      Because most people have no understanding about what the consequences might be. Apart from the first year or so online, I have used an alias especially to separate real life and online things. Basically because I know people will drag stuff out of context.

      I had an facebook account just to see what it was and got even to the point of having 100 people as 'friends'. Basically people I have no idea of what to say to in real life. So I had no idea why I had them as 'friends'. I guess the number of people on your list is like a pissing contest.

      Anyway: there was only one other person who did not use her own name and that was because she was stalked by her ex and she would want to use her own name. And yes a real name IS real data. And all the other information that people put out there is amazing.

      Just ask one of these people to go to a complete stranger in a pub or on the street and tell them the information they just hared with the world and they will think you are crazy or they are natural attention whores.

      • by Culture20 (968837)

        I had an facebook account just to see what it was and got even to the point of having 100 people as 'friends'. Basically people I have no idea of what to say to in real life. So I had no idea why I had them as 'friends'. I guess the number of people on your list is like a pissing contest.

        That's really kind of sad. According to your ID number, you're probably my age or just a little younger, but I have a couple hundred friends on FB, and they've been judiciously chosen as _real_ friends (and family) that I want to stay in contact with. And I would consider myself to be closer to the hermit side of the social-scale. Get out of the house, have a beer with your kids' friends' parents, join a local organization of some sort.

        That said, the number of friends is a pissing contest for youngster

        • by houghi (78078)

          I could not cope with a couple hundred friends. I would not even call then friends, but acquaintances. I could have gone there and the majority would have been on a 'how are you now?' basis. I do not have the need for a large group of people and many that have played a very important part in my life have gone out of sight.

          I do not call that sad. I feel very lucky to have known them and by moving on meeting others.

          I also rather keep in contact one-on-one. None of my friends have a FB account and also none of

      • I don't know why anyone would put any real data into a service like Facebook.

        Because most people have no understanding about what the consequences might be. Apart from the first year or so online, I have used an alias especially to separate real life and online things. Basically because I know people will drag stuff out of context.

        And most Slashdotters keep vaguely handwaving about 'consequences' without ever really actually enumerating any. It's become a fear word like 'terrorism' or 'think of the childre

    • It's a large, profit-driven, high-margin corporation. You wouldn't tell McDonald's or Coca-Cola what your interests are, where you live, YOUR POLITICAL OPINIONS, who your parents are and who you want to date, would you?

      Actually I tell everybody in the world that sort of information. Especially my POLITICAL OPINIONS. I even have a website where the domain includes my actual name. In this website I establish my beliefs, my goals and aspirations, as well as my past activities with respect to different proje

    • by bjk002 (757977)

      "I'm a gay Black Christian Libertarian who wants legal pot and likes chinchillas."

      Dude, what's your Facebook userid? We have GOT to become friends!!!

    • wtf I MARRIED a girl I found on a social network!

      I did it. Seriously. And always married another one.

  • hookup central (Score:5, Insightful)

    by eagl (86459) on Thursday August 19, 2010 @08:15AM (#33299812) Journal

    It's gonna turn into a hookup tool. Like craigslist adult forums, but very very immediate.

  • What's this sentence doing in the write up? As long ago as monday, eh?

  • This really is turning into a great tool for obsessive people. Here's an example; I'm on facebook and I am updated about what new friends my friends have. Why on earth should I know this? It is utterly pointless and makes you feel like a stalker. As for the location business, it's like a ticking time bomb to me until the media focus on a particular crime where the attacker used facebook as a means to gather private information about whereabouts. Facebook is either really stupid, or they think they are invin
    • by Mascot (120795)

      and I am updated about what new friends my friends have. Why on earth should I know this? It is utterly pointless

      No it isn't. Many of my FB friends were added by noticing a common friend via one of my existing ones. Apart from an original handful, that's actually how almost all of mine got added.

      The Places functionality seems like a non-issue. Looks like you'll only check in at a location if you click the "Check In" button within a separate area of the application. In other words, you have _so_ opted in. Th

    • This really is turning into a great tool for obsessive people. Here's an example; I'm on facebook and I am updated about what new friends my friends have. Why on earth should I know this? It is utterly pointless and makes you feel like a stalker.

      When one of my high school friends has a new friend, it just might be someone I knew/know as well, who just got on Facebook. When one of my SCA friends has a new friend - it just might be someone I knew/know as well, who just got on Facebook. When one of my geocac

  • by ndg123 (801212)
    The product isn't the social networking service offered to the mostly unwitting registrants. The product is the data harvested from them and sold to advertisers and other human detritus for their nefarious purposes. The announcement is really "we're going to pump this GPS data out of the data cows and you'll be able to buy it from us". see also: a number of pronouncements from Zuckerberg indicating how much he respects the users.
  • by houghi (78078)

    It just amazes me how much we are willing to give away everything that is related to our privacy.

    Advertisement is one of the least things I am worried about. What I am worried about is that nobody really cares about privacy. Not really. Many people think that if you are in public, you do not have a right on privacy. Many people think that if you give it away, it is your right and not a big issue.

    However I try to do my best to not only think about my privacy, but about others as well, just as I would think a

    • by ScentCone (795499)
      Many people think that if you are in public, you do not have a right on privacy

      What do you mean?
    • It just amazes me how much we are willing to give away everything that is related to our privacy.

      I bet you were just fishing for karma -- "zOMG big brother!!1!" always works here. But really, it's not a big deal. Being in a public place isn't really private. Private stuff I consider things like the small love note I write for my wife, the advice on relationships I ask my dad, the girl I talked to when my wife was away with friends, etc. Not the small stuff, like the bar I hang out.

  • What year? 2011? The summary was posted Aug 19, 2010, at ~1PM GMT... There's no place on Earth that's -13 or -14 GMT, so it had to be the 19th when it was posted to the front page.
    • by Americano (920576)

      It's slashdot. There's a delay. You know this.

      The product was announced yesterday afternoon (Aug 18), at about 7:30 EST. "The iPhone app will go live on Aug 18" means "it's live today, the date of the announcement, Aug. 18, 2010, but the Places service won't be turned on until August 19th, 2010, so you won't be able to use the iPhone app to check in to that service until tomorrow, Aug. 19th."

  • I have to say I just don't get services like this.

    Facebook, like many other websites, tries to strike a balance with its users. In exchange for offering me a range of services, I provide them with data of various kinds which they then use in an attempt to make money from me. I've found it a useful means of keeping in touch with people, sharing photos, and so on, and I've been happy enough to give them what they've asked for thus far as payment for it. It's generally nothing secret - I don't care who know

  • This stuff reminds me of that cartoon where the mice decide to give the cat a present: a pretty, shiny bell to put around the cat's neck. For me? the cat exclaims. Now the mice know when the cat is coming.

    No thanks.

"We learn from history that we learn nothing from history." -- George Bernard Shaw

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