Strategic withdrawal

Just when I was beginning to come around to the possibilities of the new Facebook Timeline, and perhaps feel like I was over-reacting… this popped up on El Reg! Now, there’s slightly distasteful and there’s plain old abuse of privilege.

Facebook will begin adding photos of its users to third-party adverts appearing in users’ news feeds come early next year, so if you’re the sort who’s a bit free with your thumbs-up button, there’s no way out of being featured alongside a tin of baked beans or a pair of knickers on the social network.

Using my image on sponsored adverts is a little too far, and so I’m gently removing my face from the book. It’s not an easy withdrawal ; all my own photo albums have been deleted (well, as deleted as I can do with Facebook…) but there are a hundred or so tagged photo’s that friends have put up. Removing each of them is time consuming and has already resulted in friends asking why I’m de-tagging them – or at least their pictures.

I think I’ll stay on Facebook, as an anonymous name ; so much of online life is demanding of a FB presence now. But I’ll return to ‘seeing’ friends rather than ‘liking’ them. I’ll return to emailing rather than posting and commenting on their published lives, and I’ll blog my wibble…

I guess I’m old… I can see all the advantages of having my mobile phone know where your mobile phone is, have my friends know what your friends like to buy, have all my work colleagues touching base with my spiritual mates, get tailored advertising on my page and bish-faced sponsored adverts in my friends news feeds… but the advantages are not really mine.

They are advantages to the marketeers.

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