Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Why I Am Leaving Facebook

On the front page of the Baltimore Sun today there is an article titled "Facebook Faceoff" - an article that details Facebook's change in its privacy policy.

From the 2/18/09 Baltimore Sun, page 1:

"The change allows Facebook to keep user content such as photos and phone numbers even if members delete their accounts. Under the old terms, the license expired when users left Facebook."

The changes occurred quietly on Feb 4 but there is now a huge outcry. Again, according to the Sun, Facebook's Chief Exec said:

"We wouldn't share your information in a way you wouldn't want."

And just, pray tell, how the hell do you know what I want???

Their objective, apparently, is "continuity" - so others can continue to contact you. Well, continuity boy, I am easy to find on the web, and Facebook is one place you will no longer find me. While I am fairly certain they will reverse this policy, they will do it without yours truly. Amtower is leaving the building.

Adios Facebook. Here's hoping you soon become a footnote on how not to do things in social networking.

Facebook apparently did reverse it's policy
but if you read this carefully - they are far from done. I am maintaining my decision to vacate facebook altogether and concentrate on (in order of importance to my business) LinkedIn, The Federal Contracting Network, GovLoop, Plaxo and possibly PerfectNetworker. You can also find me at Twitter -


  1. From Adriel Hampton

    Date: 2/19/2009
    Subject: RE: Mark blogs again! ...

    Mark, I'm not a Facebook defender, but I've found the LinkedIn to be even more troublesome, to the point where I am not interested in asking questions there because they hold claim to any responses. It seems like Facebook has to have a user license on dead accounts, because by the nature of the network content may have already been shared to people who are still active. A non-exclusive license is simply not scary, and their are much more serious data sales that have been going on for years and years (phone info, club card info). When it comes to social networks, it seems you either do them or don't. To my mind, this ToS kerfluffle was just that. (tried to comment on your blog, but the word-verification system was not loading properly - feel free to post this as a comment if you like)

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