The Small Print Project                            

Facebook: By Adding This App, You Agree to Be Used in an Ad

facebook app beaconThis kind of caught me by surprise — I’ve never seen anything — even in the Facebook App Developers’ small print — indicating that a user’s adding of an app equivocates signing away one’s likeness to said app for use in an add on your friends’ profiles. Here’s my friend Patrick Neeman of Speaktech being totally USED and I wonder if he even knows it?

Is this unique to the “Friends for Sale” App being advertised here or is this a standard policy allowed by developers who build Facebook Apps? Seems a little much to me… What do you think? Is this the kind of cross-promotion of your likeness you should expect when participating in an online community / social network?

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  • anon

    It is not unique to that app. Tetris Friends does it as well.

    The ad is only shown to the friends of the person in it. Seeing as you could just go to his profile and check what apps he's added, I really don't see that you're gaining any more access to his info. Similarly, he isn't probably giving away any more info than his newsfeed usually does for him. The fact that it's further to the left of the page is pretty irrelevant.

  • http://netzoo.net Andy Sternberg

    In fact, all apps are free to do it, if the user allows for Social Ads (in the privacy tab of accounts). True, these are only seen by friends and none of the information is unavailable elsewhere on facebook, however, I don't know many people who actively check to confirm that their Social Ads status is set to on/off. In this case, my friend Patrick had no idea, and of course, he had no idea he was showing up in his friend's sidebar until I told him so.

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    Andy, seems like a 'bit too much' to me as well!! You can only take things so far before they become ridiculous. I agree with what you've said. Keep up the good work.

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    I have personally had enough with the ridiculous add ons such as this one at Facebook and Social media centers, to the point where a simple handshake and coffee seem, once again, very appealing.

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    It's definitely a little annoying but at least it is only being showed to people that can see your information.

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    I have seen this in more than 1 app as well, however, I am not as sure if it is something which pertains to any facebook app as I have come across a few which do not do this.
    It can be kind of corss-promotion as you said..

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    What is it with privacy these days!
    The 'public' need to be more outspoken about these things I believe.

    Social networking is a great concept, but we need to work together to ensure it is safe and our privacy is respected.

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    This is another example of where small prints erodes privacy… just by installng an app you sign your likeness away… shocking.

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    I agree to Anon, that is how I have seen too.

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    Social networking applications really is rising its population this was my first time to hear about these application but the concept seems the same with other applications as well.

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    Well, it sure is smart marketing. I just think Facebook should have rules for this kind of stuff. On the other hand, people should maybe read the TOS before adding it?

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    I'm always using social networking sites such as facebook, twitter and myspace.. but its my first time to hear about this one, It's not bad for me I guess we can benefit from their cross promotion.

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    the point where a simple handshake and coffee seem, once again, very appealing……………….

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    I really don't see that you're gaining any more access to his info. Similarly, he isn't probably giving away any more info than his newsfeed usually does for him.

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    it is only being showed to people that can see your information…………….

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    it seems to be really absurd.. doesnt make sense.. while adding apps probably some information or disclaimer must be given so that people adding it will become aware of it !!!!

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    Nowadays facebook are now swarming with a lot of applications, and what you mentioned is not unique.. there are lots of other same applications like it.. I could really mention 2 or 3 apps with the same theme as friends for sale.

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    I think this is wrong, and is one of he reasons why I avoid social networks. Too much information, and too many to keep up with. If these people really cared about you, why do yo never see them in person?

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    This is really shocking, I had no idea they were allowed to do this. I wonder if anyone i know has been effected.

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    Of course, I dont blame your friend Patrick for being sucked into this promotion. Happens on myspace all the time.

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    It is not unique to that app. Tetris Friends does it as well.

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    It's definitely a little annoying but at least it is only being showed to people that can see your information.

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    This is really shocking, I had no idea they were allowed to do this. I wonder if anyone i know has been effected.

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    it sure is smart marketing. I just think Facebook should have rules for this kind of stuff. On the other hand.

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    the point where a simple handshake and coffee seem, once again, very appealing.

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    It is not unique to that app. Tetris Friends does it as well.

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    It's definitely a little annoying but at least it is only being showed to people that can see your information.

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    This is really shocking, I had no idea they were allowed to do this. I wonder if anyone i know has been effected.

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    it sure is smart marketing. I just think Facebook should have rules for this kind of stuff. On the other hand.

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    the point where a simple handshake and coffee seem, once again, very appealing.

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