Despite the fact that I work in the social media industry, I'm not a huge Facebook user. It's kind of like a gynecologist who doesn't want to come home and have sex - by the end of a day reading about Facebook, developing Facebook strategies, using Facebook for clients, etc. last thing I want to do is come home and do more Facebook.
Today I gave my profile a much needed overhaul. I added some pics, selected some new apps, commented on some friends walls, and generally made it look like I log on to do more than accept friend requests. However, in the course of all this I was reminded once again that this ain't your grandaddy's Facebook.
Because of all the hazarah over Facebook Beacon, and the crescendo of debate over who "owns" your social networking information and relationships, I found that I was constantly being asked to opt-in to sharing my information when adding apps, writing on people's "Super Walls" and more. Suddenly my attempts to further develop my online social network were taking on an Orwellian tone -- more often that not clicking "do not share my information with X" led to the message "You must share your information with this application, if you do not want to share your information - do not install this app." Rrrreeehh? Thanks for the choice there friends.
At the end of the day I really don't care that much if Facebook knows about my undying love of CSI, my enthusiasm for napping, my ability to take advantage of open bars, or my mad euchre skillz. But, knowing entirely too much about the privacy debate, the future of advertising in social networking and the ways in which this data is being sliced and diced by everyone and their mother - it definitely made me think twice about what I was doing on Facebook.
Based on the Facebook stats Jeremiah has shared (60 million users, 250k new registrations a day, 6th most trafficked site in US, etc.) the Big Brother thing is not deterring anyone. Would love everyones opinion on the great social networking privacy debate...