"When I was poor and I complained about inequality people said I was bitter, now I'm rich and I complain about inequality they say I'm a hypocrite. I'm beginning to think they just don't want inequality on the agenda because it is a real problem that needs to be addressed." - Russell Brand
Reading this thread reminds me why I don't do facebook....trying to keep myself private would be a full time job it seems :-)
That said, there are a lot of people who have no privacy settings on Facebook, use their real names, list their hometowns and relative's names. Then they post "Going out of town for a week..." It's just asking to be robbed, lol.
(And FTR, my FB is set to maximum privacy settings and my address and phone numbers are not posted there)
Plus, you don't have to use your real name. My FB is set to max privacy settings, too, and I don't think I ever put in my address and phone numbers. At any rate, they aren't posted. As for the people posting all their information and posts about going out of town, well, that's them. That isn't something you (general) have to do. I don't think Facebook is as evil as some would like to think.
I have 13 cousins that live nearly 1000 miles away. I am friends with nearly all of them on Facebook. Prior to last March, I had not seen any of them for 7 1/2 years. Before we all friended each other on FB, I would hear random info about them via my parents who got it from their parents. Since FB, I am in touch with them regularly (via PMs as well as commenting on stuff) know what's going on in their lives, see pics of their kids, etc...That is actually a good thing. People forget to mention the good things about it.
I would also be interested in whether FB posts have led to someone being robbed. I'm sure there have been scams pulled through FB - but there are email scams, mail scams, in-person scams...there are aggressive scammers out there, and there are people who will fall for lies. Nothing new there. But robberies of a person's home because someone was paying attention to their FB posts? If anyone has a link to an actual report, please post.
It's also not new to have one's real name and address/phone number listed publicly, in a place anyone can find it. Anyone remember that thing called the phone book? Sure, there are measures one can take to protect one's identity - hiding the street address, changing/shortening the name - but the default is to lay all that info out there and it's kind of a pain to get it switched. plus, if the complete info gets out there, it's there for at least a year (I often had old phone books lying around).
I notice they do require you to put a birthdate down, though. (I choose not to show mine)
I wouldn't say I think it is evil...I just think it is set up in a way that makes it more difficult than it needs to be. I haven't used google+ yet, but I already like what I have heard about that one in that it seems to be a more straightforward concept.
I guess for me it has never been worth the hassle to do facebook....if I want to talk to a family or friend we email each other, and that works. Plus I am fortunate that none of my family seems to be on facebook or rely on it. I do have friends on it, but those that I keep in touch with also will do email/phone, etc.
I don't have any problems with others that like FB, it just isn't for me, and I especially wouldn't like having to frequently update my settings to make sure my account stayed private, etc.
I don't buy this "you'll get robbed" business either. If your status updates can only be seen by your friends list, and you're getting robbed when you post that you'll be out or away, then I think you have a bigger problem than FB privacy for heaven's sake.
Naturally all the people who have issues and fears about FB are the ones who don't actually use it.
I live in a burg where nearly everyone has kids; we are awash in people under 18. A police officer here told me that with a handful of exceptions, robberies here are committed by teens against the families of other teens. IOW, if we go out of town and come home to find that the house has been broken into, it is overwhelmingly likely that the perpetrators were my kids' peers.
In that respect, I can see Facebook being a place where opportunistic teens can find houses to rob. It's not unusual for kids to have nearly everyone at their schools on their Facebook lists and most kids post about their doings.
But the above was true before Facebook, too; Facebook has just made it easier for that particular demographic.
Otherwise, though, I don't see a lot of thieves going to the time and trouble of using Facebook to troll for empty houses. I know of a way it could be done, but talk about tedious and time consuming. I think it would be faster and easier to do things the old-fashioned way--go around prospective neighborhoods looking for signs that people are away, which are usually pretty obvious. Facebook is kind of beside the point there; you can have all the privacy settings in the world on your Facebook page, but if you forget to cancel your newspaper, you haven't yourself much good.
They're, their, and there. Get it right your in college.
people still get newspapers?
As for google+, I am on it, have tried it out. I hate it. There are no privacy settings to view regarding posts, so you don't actually know what is public and what is not. You are left to assume that it is private because google told you it was. On FB now, I can look at the setting on someone's post before I comment and know who will see it...their friends or friends of friends or a custom list.
I cannot figure out how to use most of it. I put someone in the wrong circle and cannot remove her without deleting her; I could add her to the right circle as well, but could not get her out of the wrong one. I was going to leave a wall post or message for someone not on Facebook to tell him something a few weeks ago--no idea how to do that without commenting on an existing post. Not sure there is a way.
And I consider myself fortunate that a lot of my extended family is on FB; there is nothing unfortunate about how we have been able to use it as a platform to keep in touch. Thirteen cousins is a lot of email. But one family list means I can quickly communicate with all of them briefly without having to have them all in my address book--which I didn't. Passing around email addresses is a project with a big family. I can live chat with them there easily and for free.
They're, their, and there. Get it right your in college.
Maximum privacy is good, but Facebook loves to override those settings, right? While you might have listed a fake location, most people screw up in their posts and indicate that they live in New Rochelle, NY (for example.) Anywho.com can usually help anyone look up the address once they know your name.
As someone who gets the daily newspaper, I also have a phone book in addition to online resources to find someone.
I work in College Admissions and I once received an "add me to your mailing list" card that was illegible. I looked up the email on the internet to see if I had it correct and found the young lady's Xanga site (forerunner of MySpace and Facebook) that listed every personal item, including her birthdate and where she went to school, dance class (with date/time) and track team practices. I had to shake my head because she gave a detailed itinerary for her upcoming Sweet 16 blast, which meant being out of the house for an entire day with her family.
Re. FB overriding privacy settings, so far as I know, they don't. Through the recent changes, I haven't had to update my privacy settings, except for any new ones they might have implemented.