Facebook relents

By Steve Outing

I really like the concept behind Facebook’s Beacon program, which sends information about your purchases to the people in your Facebook friends network. That is, I like it as long as I as an online shopper am in control.

Having online shoppers opt in to having purchase information broadcast to their friends is, of course, the way this program should have been set up in the first place. Instead, Facebook tried to make the program opt-out — and then was surprised (d’uh!) to face a massive public backlash and even a MoveOn.org campaign aimed at getting them to scrap or change the program.

So yesterday, Facebook relented and made the program opt-in. I’m glad company executives listened to reason. How a company as smart as Facebook could misread privacy concerns so badly is hard to comprehend.

Now that it’s settled, though, Facebook has a great program that pushes the envelope for online advertising.

Author: Steve Outing Steve Outing is a Boulder, Colorado-based media futurist, digital-news innovator, consultant, journalist, and educator. ... Need assistance with media-company future strategy? Get in touch with Steve!