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Mozilla Pulls Advertising from Facebook (betanews.com) 82

An anonymous reader shares a report: Mozilla is not happy with Facebook. Not happy at all. Having already started a petition to try to force the social network to do more about user privacy, the company has now decided to withdraw its advertising from the platform. The organization is voting with its money following the misuse of user data by Cambridge Analytica, as it tries to force Facebook into taking privacy more seriously. Mozilla says that it is not happy to financially support a platform that does not do enough to protect user privacy. But the company is not severing ties completely. It says that advertising is being "paused" and that if the right steps are taken by Facebook "we'll consider returning."
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Mozilla Pulls Advertising from Facebook

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  • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Thursday March 22, 2018 @12:12PM (#56305855)

    From everything I've read, the value of advertising on Facebook is pretty questionable.

    Facebook is so noisy normally, I'm not sure how people would even see ads apart from those annoying product adds embedded in the timeline view.

    • by gnick ( 1211984 )

      I'm not sure how people would even see ads...

      Depends on the ad. A lot of ads are crafted to look like normal FB posts with only a small "Suggested App" or "Sponsored" identifier at the top to indicate that it's advertising.

      • Depends on the ad. A lot of ads are crafted to look like normal FB posts with only a small "Suggested App" or "Sponsored" identifier at the top to indicate that it's advertising.

        Right, but then it looks like a post - where the normal action is to scan quickly and move on. If an ad is not going to get you to click through, it's not very impactful as people's memories are terrible.

        I've seen the exact ads you mention, while they are probably more useful than other kinds of ads I still doubt they have a large

        • by gnick ( 1211984 ) on Thursday March 22, 2018 @12:39PM (#56306035) Homepage

          ...while they are probably more useful than other kinds of ads I still doubt they have a large impact.

          I wouldn't expect most forms of advertising to have much of an impact, but companies are putting out a LOT of money betting that I'm wrong.

          • by tehcyder ( 746570 ) on Thursday March 22, 2018 @01:00PM (#56306185) Journal

            ...while they are probably more useful than other kinds of ads I still doubt they have a large impact.

            I wouldn't expect most forms of advertising to have much of an impact, but companies are putting out a LOT of money betting that I'm wrong.

            There's an old gag about half of advertising spending being a waste of money, but no-one knows which half.

        • Advertising/marketing is about more than just specific click throughs. I don't suppose most people watching a TV ad for an expensive car immediately pick up the phone to order one, but there is presumably some point in the car company paying for those ads.
  • Well I suppose not being on Facebook and running an ad blocker works, though as a user of Firefox, I wouldn't be a target anyway.
  • I'm sure Facebook is quaking in its boots over that.
  • guess that means they have a hit/recognition factor of 0. save your money.

  • by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Thursday March 22, 2018 @12:57PM (#56306157) Journal
    If Mozilla cares about Facebook's data mining, why do they have a Facebook page and links to their Facebook page on the Firefox page (and presumably other pages, I couldn't be bothered to check)? If they care about data mining in general, then why are they making it difficult to get the Android version of Firefox via any mechanism other than the Google Play store, why don't they just provide an F-Droid repository that users can subscribe to?
  • Mozilla Foundation will rely on illegally leaked IRS records for their decision-making. None of this Facebook stuff -- because privacy.

  • by Dracos ( 107777 ) on Thursday March 22, 2018 @01:01PM (#56306193)

    Facebook's business model is analyzing and selling user data. They're not going to change it at all. User privacy goes against their core values, they only really support the illusion of it.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      ...Oh, I bet they change quite a bit. As you said, their business model is selling user data... not giving it away for free.

      From the FB POV, this essentially amounts to theft - no wonder they are bumping the security force and screening apps, etc. If your house was broken into and valuables stolen, you'd likely increase security, too!

  • I did! You can, too!
  • Isn't that why people use it? To put yourself out there to the public?

    Or to put it another way, those that want privacy don't use facebook.

  • is to hoover up as much data as they can and make a profit from it all while pretending to be nothing more than an innocent Social Media platform where friends and family can keep in touch.

    I'm curious what " privacy " can reasonably be expected or even demanded from such an entity whose sole purpose is information brokerage ?

  • This is a move worthy of applause!
  • The hypocrisy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Khyber ( 864651 ) <techkitsune@gmail.com> on Thursday March 22, 2018 @01:44PM (#56306617) Homepage Journal

    I find it funny that just a few versions ago Mozilla was doing privacy-invading shit, now they're calling upon Facebook to be more responsible with user privacy.

    Give me a break.

  • and too late.
  • following the misuse of user data by Cambridge Analytica

    The same "misuse" occurred in 2012 [ijr.com], when it was hailed as Obama's genius [investors.com] and "mastery of Big Data". I don't understand, why anyone would use Facebook — and allow them to sell one's data — but to be suddenly scandalized by Cambridge Analytica's use of it is just blatant hypocrisy.

    • I'd delete my FB account over this, but... I never made one in the first place. Selling our private data has always been their business model and I've been using various extensions to prevent them from siphoning the info from me since the beginning because it was so damned obvious.

      The real problem, though, is how they siphon your data from your friends & relatives and you can't do much about that because you never gave it to FB to begin with. So it's about 10 years too late to be scandalized by all th

    • No, Obama didn't employ the same strategies as Cambridge Analytica [washingtonmonthly.com]

      Every time an individual volunteers to help out – for instance by offering to host a fundraising party for the president – he or she will be asked to log onto the re-election website with their Facebook credentials. That in turn will engage Facebook Connect, the digital interface that shares a user’s personal information with a third party.

      Notice that this was an invitation that came directly from the Obama campaign, which t

      • by mi ( 197448 )

        No, Obama didn't employ the same strategies as Cambridge Analytica

        Oh, yes, he did [time.com]:

        because the more than 1 million Obama backers who signed up for the app gave the campaign permission to look at their Facebook friend lists. [...] More than 600,000 supporters followed through with more than 5 million contacts, asking their friends to register to vote, give money, vote or look at a video designed to change their mind.

        a community organizing tool, which is pretty much the opposite of stealing data in order to e

        • Oh look, it's on Snopes now [snopes.com]:

          Attempts at "whataboutism" with a scandal involving social media and psychographics fail to acknowledge that Cambridge Analytica obtained data by misleading people.

          ... In the case of Cambridge Analytica, information was gathered from users and given to a third party under false pretenses. According to Facebook, University of Cambridge psychologist Aleksandr Kogan created a personality quiz which users could download in an app called “thisisyourdigitallife.” Kogan pres

          • by mi ( 197448 )

            Oh, well, if Snopes finds a fault in Republicans, while white-washing Democrats, that's a real shocker... Every word must be true.

            information was gathered from users and given to a third party

            Bullshit — every campaign involves a multitude of "parties", who share the information. Each of those qualifies as "a third" party...

            University of Cambridge psychologist Aleksandr Kogan created a personality quiz which users could download in an app called “thisisyourdigitallife.” Kogan presented the

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