The Cycle

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg took a big step today when he about a recent advertising system which violates members’ privacy.

“We’ve made a lot of mistakes building this feature,” acknowledged Zuckerberg, “but we’ve made even more with how we’ve handled them. We simply did a bad job with this release, and I apologize for it.”

Facebook’s bold new advertising strategy was introduced in November, but caused many flukes. Such was the case of the girlfriend who was informed on Facebook that her boyfriend just purchased a diamond ring for Christmas.

Irate users grouped together to form “Petition: Facebook, stop invading my privacy!” The 68,000 members were a small number compared to the 57 million users, but big enough to warrant an apology from Zuckerberg to members. He promised not to broadcast member’s private activities and allowed members to turn off Beacon.

Apology, or not, the new system was still intrusive and exploitative. What do you think about social networking sites invading users’ lives to promote their products and build brand awareness?

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