Social Media Website Essay

Question:

Task 1
Consider what you expect from a social media website. Does the website have an obligation to take reasonable steps to protect your data from hackers? Does the website have a right to sell your data without paying you? Or can it just give your information away? Or can it keep your data as its own to do with whatever it wants? What about the information you provide when you sign up, such as your birthdate or home address or phone number? What about information you post after setting up security controls on your account? What basic protections do you have a right to expect from the website? Are there some things you should be able to do, such as when you log in, that should be no one else’s business? Should you be able to delete information you posted? What other things should you be able to do with your own information?
Go to the Discussion Board called Website Expectations and list 3 DIFFERENT expectations you have about what data a social media website should protect and what it should allow you to control. Consider both data you post and behaviors you may do.
Task 2
– Review Facebook's Privacy Policy (actually, Facebook has gone so far as to even remove the word 'Privacy' from the policy's name. It is now called the Data Use Policy). As you read through the policy, think about how it compares/contrasts to your expectations for privacy on the Internet. The Privacy Policy can be found here:
Facebook's Privacy Policy is long and hard to get through. Facebook buries a lot of important information that they would just as soon you not find. Since using the website constitutes your agreement to the policy, it's smart to know what it says.
Here are some resources to help you weave your way through Facebook’s policy:



This task requires you to investigate and think. But there is nothing for you to submit.
Task 3
How does Facebook's Privacy Policy stack up against your thinking about what's fair use of the personal data that you provide to a website? What level of accord is there between your expectations for privacy and what the website actually provides? Does Facebook restrict any of the behaviors that you believed users should control?
Write a paragraph on Facebook’s policy regarding each of the three points you listed in the Discussion Board. Is Facebook’s policy consistent with your expectations (as you listed them in Task 1) for a website's treatment of you and your personal data? Discuss in a 1 page paper. [Using Arial font at 12 pt, one page is about 500 words.] Submit your written work to this Assignment Submission Box.
Task 4

Make a list of up to 6 parts of Facebook’s policy that surprise you. Make sure these are DIFFERENT from any parts you have discussed previously in any Tasks of this assignment.

Answer:

Task 1

Social networking sites such as Facebook needs users to sign their terms and condition at the time of registration and most of the users do agree to their terms and condition without going through it. These terms declares that site has right store users data and can use for any ethical purpose in the company. Facebook has policies that directly affect the data privacy such as it is difficult to delete an account as it can be de-activated and later can be restored. But, The question is who owns user’s personal data, where does the data goes when account is closed, will the company inform when their personal information has been used for marketing insight reporting or for other academic search purpose (Couts, 2012). These websites must provide some data privacy rights to their users because potential dangerous such as sexual predators, stalking and unintentional fame will harass the users not the company. So its user’s right to have full rights to manage their accounts on social media websites. Mentioned below are the three expectations or security controls that social media websites should provide.

User can delete their data completely when they leave social media websites: Facebook has removed a clause from its terms and conditions where it mentions that all personal information and data of a user will be deleted when the account is closed. There could be so many reasons of closing an account and it is the right of user to delete all his or her information from the site.

Tracking of user research behavior and telling friends what user is liking and searching for; sometime users don’t want to share what they like or research for if they don’t want to share it with friends then it should not be shared.

Use of personal information of user without their permission

Task 3

Deletion of account


Deletion of account takes 90 days and reason behind that is not clear yet. If user don’t has right to access the account after deleting it then why company has right to store it for 90 days and what will be its use. This is completely unfair and should be changed.

Tracking, analyzing and using user’s behavior
to target the right audience for third party; this is completely unfair as user is not aware about what his or her data is being used. Facebook reserves the right to use personal information of users without receiving their permission by saying that they have told this in data use policy which says they have right to use user’s information if they see it fit to their services and features and what services and products is just a guess. Facebook has been selling user informationto fulfill advertising agendas and this is how it makes money. Where on other side users don’t know how their data is used in the company (Luckerson, 2014). Facebook needs to make clear statement about use of user’s data on applications and features it launches so that users can control their private data flow.

Use of personal information of user without their permission

If personal data such as education, gender and working status of users is helping in making academic reports and research to make something better than it is good to contribute in it. For example, research about education status and level is fine if purpose is to make new services and features for students but sharing very personal data such as relationship status, whose profile you check and what you search on web is completely unethical. The companies should not have access to pass personal information of a user to third party without their permission. After all, it’s the users who will be suffering with privacy threats. So it is better that user decide what and where the information about them should be shared.

Expectation for privacy Vs. Actual privacy

In “use of data” of Facebook it is clearly mentioned that user’s data can be used where it is suitable to their services and products. But they have not cleared what kinds of services and products. The user may not want to contribute in specific kind of service, but there is no choice for the user, even user will not be aware of all these activities as at time of registration they have agreed to their terms and conditions(Luckerson, 2014).

Facebook launches so many apps and features for the users and these apps takes personal information about users, there is no clause if these information will be used for some specific purpose in future. If they do it then user may avoid using such features in order to control data privacy. User expects that everything on its account is under his or her control but it is not. However, it should be controlled by the user only.

Task 4

Facebook has been in controversies because of its data privacy policies. The controversial ways of using user’s data has been topic of discussion in digital trends. The major issues are associated with use of user’s data without taking their permission. Mentioned below are the six different data privacy issues with Facebook that has been discussed in detail-

Making users searchable even if they don’t want: there is no feature in Facebook that can make users unsearchable in the searching list. You will be visible if the searching criteria include your name or user id or other information which is completely unfair.

Facebook allows user to make some information private on their profile so that it can be only seen by the people you want or is completely hidden. However, there is still some information that will remain public no matter how much privacy you have applied. These types of information are Name, profile picture, username, User ID, Gender and cover photos. A user may expect to hide everything on its account so this should be allowed by the Facebook.

Using your likes and shares in advertisement is also unfair sometime friends may find you associated with advertisement. As per the data use policy of facebook personal information can be used to Show and measure ads and services. It is like you are promoting something about which you are not aware and you will also not get credit for it as well.

Using facial recognition software in order to spot user in a picture: A user may or may not want to be spotted in a group picture. It is completely unfair to use software to detect a person in a picture.

Some features like sharing where your personal information is not controlled by you but by others. This feature needs to be changed as a user has right to control its information on social media websites (Luckerson, 2014). Facebook allows you to choose what to share and what to not but the problem is that your friends can also share information about you which you can’t control and manage. Which means even if you have made tightest security on face book still you can’t control data about you. It should allow managing any data about users by user itself rather than others. As per there policy the information that others have shared about you is not part of your account and will not be deleted when you delete your account.

Tracking user searching behavior on World Wide Web is also unfair and it should be prohibited completely. A user may search anything and may want to make it private. Social networking site should not trace their searching behavior to use it in advertising and other marketing reports. Facebook has been a behavioral library which sells behavioral studies to third party. It is making money by using personal data and information posted by the users and unfair is that users are not aware with this fact. The personal information is also passed to government if needed which seems helpful for the society but user awareness is important for all these uses of data.

References

Couts, A. (2012).Terms & Conditions: Facebook’s ‘Data Use Policy’ explained.Digital Trends. Available at: [Accessed 3 Jul. 2016].

Luckerson, V. (2014).7 Controversial Ways Facebook Has Used Your Data. TIME.com. Available at: [Accessed 3 Jul. 2016].

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