Zuckerberg: Facebook to ratchet up exploitation, only bans “outliers”

Richard Wray, in Facebook aims to market its user data bank to businesses on guardian.co.uk:

Facebook intends to capitalise on the wealth of information it has about its users by offering its 150 million-strong customer base to corporations as a market research tool. The appearance, later this year, of corporate polls targeted at certain parts of the Facebook audience because of the information they have posted on their pages, is likely to infuriate privacy campaigners.

No, ya think?

Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg, sporting a tie, demoed it at Davos.  (No report on whether any attendees brought up privacy issues.)  Mark also shmoozed with Robert Scoble about Facebook’s “intense” year, and defended Facebook’s arbitrary and secretive banning policy:

He also said that his system looks for “outlying” behavior. He said if you behave like an average user you should never trigger the algorithms that will get you kicked off.

Let’s be specific here: if you behave like the system’s Harvard undergraduate founders and primarily-male engineering staff have programmed the software to think like “an average user” behaves you should never trigger the algorithms that will get you kicked off.  Except in reality, most people don’t behave that way.  Robert is surprisingly sympathetic to arbitrary undocumented limits on speech:

Of course, that irks me a bit because my usage of social media sites is totally outlier behavior. But, I can see his point. One thing that’s nice about Facebook is that I see very little spam or other nasty behavior.

Robert himself prefers Friendfeed, which lets him “‘sift’ through tons of news and noise and pick things out for my friends to read”, although his wife prefers Facebook because of the privacy controls.  Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

Facebook graphic from AJC1’s flickr site, licensed under Creative Commons