Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Facebook and Privacy

One of the questions that have been haunting us in recent past is:” Is Facebook Doing Enough to Protect Your Privacy?”

Over the weekend I have been watching some of the senior leaders of my company (board members) interviewed by various business channels. One question that was common to most of the senior leaders of this giant IT empire was: “Why is that you are not on Facebook or Twitter?” One common answer was I don’t feel it is safe enough to be on public domain. Being a social media enthusiast I was not too convinced with the answer. I felt may be the people from old school of thought did not wanted to be part of the next gen rush. But looking at the repeated privacy breach on Facebook I feel they were right. Result, I have deleted my FB account.

Here is a small right-up I feel you should review before you post an update on FB. FB has agreed to a settlement with the FTC over charges that the social network had deceived its users about privacy. The FTC had accused Facebook in an eight-count complaint of not living up to its own promises. Among them: sharing users’ personal information with third parties without their knowledge or consent, changing privacy practices without informing users, and claiming to have a program to verify the security of apps when it didn’t.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg addressed the settlement in a blog post, saying Facebook had proactively addressed the FTC’s complaints but that the company had “made a bunch of mistakes.”

Bunch of mistakes??? Dude are you kidding me?? Compromising on user privacy is bunch of mistakes?? Its heaps of offence.

With all these charges on FB, Mark Zuckerberg’s dream of $100 Billion IPO seems to be difficult. Here is a brief snapshot about their IPO update:
Facebook is preparing itself for an IPO that could easily top $100 billion, according to a new report.

At $100 billion, Facebook’s impending IPO would be one of the largest in history, quadrupling Google’s $23 billion IPO in 2004.

CNBC says the social networking giant is likely to go public during the first quarter of 2012, less than nine months from now. That falls in line with a May 2012 deadline when Facebook will be required to publicly report its financial information, regardless of whether it’s a private or public company.

The $100 billion valuation isn’t a surprise — there were reports last month that Facebook’s IPO could easily top $100 billion, thanks to huge consumer and investor appeal. In fact, if LinkedIn’s stellar IPO is any indication, Facebook’s valuation could hit the stratosphere the day it hits the public markets.

Goldman Sachs is in the driver’s seat to underwrite the IPO, thanks to its $450 million investment in Facebook earlier this year. Facebook and Goldman might want to hurry, though: The social network’s growth is apparently slowing down.

Keeping figures crossed for Mark, I am hoping they will atleast learn from their mistakes and ensure they re-build the FB brand.

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