If you’ve been on Facebook, you’ve probably seen these status posts. Some preamble of cause and/or condition, out of all my family and friends, I’m going to bet that less than X will take the time to put this on their wall to help cause or condition in preamble. So surprise me and prove me wrong! Really, people? I have no problem with your cause or condition, but do you really think doing something like this will leaving you feeling better for it all? Because if not, why do it? So let’s explore if you might end up feeling better for it.
As of Thursday morning in Australia, Facebook has blocked all news content from around the world to be shared on its social media platform! There was an Australian law set to go into effect where Facebook, and other social media platforms, would have to pay fees to news publishers for news content shared on their platforms, either in deals directly with the publishers, or directly to the Australian government. Google has complied, as described in this BBC article with Robert Murdoch’s News Corporation, among others. Facebook, meanwhile, has opted to go the other way, which, as far as I’m concerned, is bad news for Facebook unless it changes because I don’t think it’s going to win this one… and this could be the first step in likely many, to Facebook’s demise. I’m not saying that demise will happen fast or anything, as they’ll go down fighting, but if they stick to this mentality, they’ll be going down because unlike other big tech giants, they don’t have a lot of other revenue sources than advertising. That was partly why I proposed Apple build its own privacy-enhanced social media platform, because they have other revenue streams and can “starve out” Facebook. But beyond all that, here are some other consequences to Facebook’s decision.
When you see and hear enough from a big group of people over time, like on Facebook, somebody is bound to annoy, anger, or make you feel negatively sooner or later. When there’s a big enough group of people able to see pictures and information you share about your life, like on Facebook, you probably don’t want to give everybody the same access. When I have to deal with a big enough group of people for these things, like on Facebook, I get really judgmental and lay down the law in my Facebook account and newsfeed to not only minimize all the negativity that might come out of this, but have a little fun to take control back immediate with some fun actions that have no consequence to those people, and just benefits to me.
Apple has been on the march to fight for better privacy requirements of people’s data on social media. They even put some action where their mouth was recently, by changing their privacy practices to have users opt in some sharing of their data via apps rather than opt out so that the default wasn’t to share their data like with many other platforms. However, if they want to be really serious about it all, they have the perfect avenue to not only do this, but also maim one of their tech rivals in Facebook, who survives on data sharing (often through targeted ads) without significant revenue stream elsewhere like Apple has with hardware, software, and more.
On June 6th, 2020, as we were just coming out of wave 1 of the COVID-19 pandemic with a decent amount of lockdown, I surprised my Facebook world by entering a relationship. The surprise was not only due to the timing, when nobody was still really supposed to be seeing others, but that the eternal bachelor from being undesired by women this racially conservative province had found someone! What I didn’t tell them, though, was with whom, and that it was fake, and that I did it for them.