Facebook: Friends Are Useful

April 16, 2019

I read “Mark Zuckerberg Leveraged Facebook User Data to Fight Rivals and Help Friends, Leaked Documents Show.” I must admit I was going to write about Alphabet Google YouTube DeepMind’s smart software which classified the fire in Paris in a way that displayed links to the 9/11 attack. I then thought, “Why not revisit Microsoft’s changing story about how much user information was lost via the email breach?” But I settled on a compromise story. Facebook allegedly loses control of documents. This is a security angle. The document reveal how high school science club management methods allegedly behave.

According to CNBC:

Facebook would reward favored companies by giving them access to the data of its users. In other cases, it would deny user-data access to rival companies or apps.

If true, the statement does not surprise me. I was in my high school science club, and I have a snapshot of our fine group of outcasts, wizards, and crazy people. Keep in mind: I was one of these exemplars of the high school.

Let’s put these allegedly true revelations in context:

  1. Facebook has amassed a remarkable track record in the last year
  2. Google, a company which contributed some staff to Facebook, seems to have some interesting behaviors finding their way into the “real news” media; for example, senior management avoiding certain meetings and generally staying out of sight
  3. Microsoft, a firm which dabbled in monopoly power, is trying to figure out how to convert its high school science club management methods in its personnel department to processes which match some employees’ expectations for workplace behavior.

What’s the view from Harrod’s Creek? Like the Lyft IPO and subsequent stock market performance, the day of reckoning does not arrive with a bang. Nope. The day creeps in on cat’s feet. The whimpering may soon follow.

Stephen E Arnold, April 16, 2019



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