I just read a defense of Facebook by Mashable’s Co-editor Ben Parr. He makes a valid argument about social media privacy:

Privacy is dead, and social media is holding the smoking gun

But this is not why people are really in uproar about Facebook’s Open Graph; people are upset because the implied uses of this new version of Facebook.

It’s not the what about what Facebook is doing, its why.

Every day popular culture is being infiltrated by marketing and advertising. Consumerism is entrenched into our culture these days. Just look at the ads for Iron Man 2. The opening of Facebook to other sites promotes a materialistic takeover of American ideology. A threat that consumers perceive they have no control over.

People fear the open graph will take over Facebook by overproducing “suggestions” for consumer crap that we don’t need. And thus creating a user experience that lacks control on behalf of the user; perceived control at least.

New media is about two-way communication made possible; not one-way marketing made uncontrollable

People do not fear the wrong person is going to see that they drink Keystone Light at a college party, it is the fear that Keystone Light will see them drinking and then shove 800 ads for beer onto their facebook page.

This fear may be irrational but new media marketing is real and products are already being placed on every Facebook page. In reality, the fears have already come to life; Facebook is no longer “a place for friends.” Instead it has becomes “a place for marketers” and that is the stigma that could be Facebook’s undoing.

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