uniebook Data protection and privacy: is it your own fault?


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At the moment the change of Facebook-Feeds again strongly in the discussion. A look into the past shows how much all changes to the feed have had on user behavior so far.

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Jeannine Cook Best of HR – Berufebilder.de®Jeannine Koch (born in Bahrke) is a qualified media consultant.

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Private becomes more present

Since every user has a summary of numerous activities of friendly Facebook-User receives, he has a precise insight into who uploaded which photos and when, who commented on whose status message, to which group he joined and from which facebook-Site he has become a fan.

The fact is: Facebook has undergone a decisive paradigm shift in terms of privacy settings on Fac since the introduction of the news feed at the latestebook completed. And this has a huge impact on the privacy of users.

Everyone sees everything

The news feed is also displayed when a user has entered a new work center or has changed his relationship status. The latter is usually an explosive information, which can lead to a large reaction chain. A new form of public dealing with personal data is presented here.

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Information that was previously classified as personal, such as the separation from the life partner, is now no longer just explained in private, but is visible to all befriended users on Facebook communicates.

Disruption of the social norm

Even if the introduction of the news feed in his time for big Criticism in the ranks of the already registered Facebook-Users, the aggregation of information from the news feed has become one of the main functions on Facebook.

Nevertheless, this example shows a basic characteristic in connection with the wishes and expectations of users of social networks, namely that of “disruption of the social norm”.

Resistance to the newsfeed

uniebook has bundled the available information without prior notice and restructured its perception. This did not correspond to the habits of the users, which aroused certain expectations over time.

At the beginning, users were not clear about what sources of information the news feed was and how much their own activities exposed them to the public. This was a condition that led to enormous uncertainty.

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Are the users themselves to blame?

Jared Spool analyzed the procedure Facebooks as an increase in the visibility of information that was already available anyway and thus excludes the possibility of privacy being compromised.

"No invasion of privacy was occurring - just an increase in the visibility of already available information."

Study: Blind Trust in Facebook?

A study by Acquisti and Gross from 2006 shows that the trust of users in Facebook At that time it was relatively high, especially when compared to the level of trust that users had in the networks Friendster or MySpace contrary brought.

At the same time, the study shows that Facebook-Users do not know exactly how Facebook the information they provide is further processed. 56% believed that Facebook does not share any personal information of the user with third parties.

User: Falsch informiert

This also explains the great uncertainty that has arisen with the introduction of the news feed. Users were not adequately informed about how visible the information they are on Facebook to adjust.

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From today's perspective, the introduction of the news feed was one of the most important steps with regard to the development of Facebooks as a platform. The establishment of the news feed enabled third-party providers for the first time to make externally developed applications accessible to a broad masses using viral network effects.

Newsfeed the success of the fan sites

The so-called Facebook- Focus on faces. Their architecture is similar to that of a user's profile, but with the difference that there is no limit to the number of “fans” (which is analogous to limiting the number of friends in a user profile to 5000).

Artists, brands, clubs etc. can refer to Facebook present with your own profile and thus collect fans and, above all, exchange ideas with them. The usual functions of a profile are available to fan pages, i.e. there is a pin board, photo albums, lists of fans, etc.

The probability of interaction is increasing

For example, as soon as a user becomes enthusiastic about a particular artist and expresses it through an activity such as becoming a fan, this action becomes visible to all his friends in the news feed.

The likelihood increases that one or more of the friends will join this action and join the Facebook-Fansite of the artist thus cascading under the facebookUsers and the artist thus generates a large number of fans.

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Lack of transparency in newsfeed

That the implementation of the news feed has a positive benefit for the Facebook and their users have now recognized them. What was criticized at that time, however, was the lack of transparency and information about the changes in attitudes.

In addition, access to the privacy settings was also made considerably more difficult by the lack of user friendliness at this time. As a result, users, just like once again in December 2009, involuntarily disseminated information that they classified as private.


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  1. REGIS GMBH

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  4. Pascal Maurer

    The end of privacy on #Facebook: Is it your own fault?

  5. Simone Janson

    #Blogpost series - the end of privacy on Facebook: Is it your own fault?

  6. Liane Wolffgang

    Series - the end of privacy on Facebook: Is it your own fault ?: Facebook has been at the latest since ...

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