Experts to Facebook: Mind your manners

Beacon still under fire

In the meantime, Facebook has its hands full and must hurry to do damage control. Almost 70,000 Facebook members have signed an online petition, launched on Nov. 20 by MoveOn.org, protesting aspects of Beacon that the group feels are too intrusive of people's privacy.

While the privacy controversy is unlikely to cripple Facebook, the company must actively deal with the objections and concerns being raised. Beacon partners also have reason to worry about being associated with this program, he said.

"The danger lies in not addressing it, because the longer Facebook stays silent, the higher the chance that it will trickle down to its core user base. Facebook needs to take this seriously," Sterling said.

On Wednesday morning, after the interviews for this article had been conducted, Facebook CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg announced in an official blog posting that the company had decided to give its members the ability to completely decline participating in Beacon.

He also apologized for missteps in the design and deployment of Beacon. "We've made a lot of mistakes building this feature, but we've made even more with how we've handled them. We simply did a bad job with this release, and I apologize for it," Zuckerberg wrote.

While this move will likely make Beacon more palatable to its critics, Zuckerberg didn't directly address any of the CA findings, which ultimately are the biggest points of contention right now.

In the only apparent reference to the CA findings, Zuckerberg wrote: "If you select that you don't want to share some Beacon actions or if you turn off Beacon, then Facebook won't store those actions even when partners send them to Facebook," he wrote.

That would seem to indicate that Beacon will continue to track users and send data back to Facebook, leaving it up to Facebook to decide which data it keeps and which it deletes.

Privacy advocates generally believe that Facebook shouldn't be tracking people's actions, let alone reporting them back to Facebook, unless they have expressly given their consent for that tracking to occur.

Facebook didn't immediately reply to a request for comment about Zuckerberg's blog posting.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?