Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s appearance before members of congress taught us a few things we already know (members of congress don’t know what’s going on in the world) and a few things we didn’t think about (squeeze corporate executives enough and they’ll spill their data) before.
Despite all these tech giants revising their privacy policies and showing a more transparent view of the information they collect about us, not much has changed in their collection habits. David Lamb pointed out that Facebook has a new feature to give their users more control over what information it collects.
What does that mean?
First, it means Facebook has a plan to let you see some of what gets captured and which websites use it to track you while you’re online. Is that an important step? Of course not. Facebook knows most people don’t care about such data and certainly won’t take the time and effort to figure out where to view the data and try to determine what it means.
Second, even Google and Apple have new methods in place so you can view some of the information they capture about you.
Sounds good, right?
Don’t be fooled. These moves are mere public lip service designed to head off criticism of the amount of data such technology companies and social networks and search engines gather, because they know most of their users or customers don’t really care.
Since Google is a verb, use it to search for “google user data” to see what results you get. I refined my search to the past month. Here’s a look at the headlines that came up.
Facebook ranks the worst among U.S. companies surveyed, but don’t let that distract you from how bad companies like Google, Microsoft, and Twitter, are too.
Fun read. Scary, too.
Facebook calls out Google, Amazon and Twitter for also harvesting user data as it attempts to clarify how it tracks your activity on and off the site
Why? Misery loves company.
Google hoards way more of your personal data than Facebook
That doesn’t sound good. How bad is it? How about half a million pages of data. Per year.
Google is collecting 500,000 pages of single user data every year
Now we know why Google is a verb.
Do you think Google will share the 500,000 pages of user data it collected on you last year? No. What we get access to is not even the tip of the iceberg of what is collected.
It’s probably a good thing that governments or political parties around the world do not have access to such information, right?