In other news...
... Hitler has designs beyond just the Sudetenland.
A bogus application that lures Facebook users by falsely offering to show who has been viewing their profile has been exposed as a scam. Rik Ferguson, a senior security consultant at Trend Micro, warns he has already identified 25 different copies of the same rogue app but using different monikers such as peeppeep-pro, profile …
I use Facebook, dont mind admitting it. I use it to keep informed about events I may wish to attend and to keep in touch with people I only get to see at motorcycle rallys. I have no desire to join anyone's 'mafia mob' or raise virtual crops on a virtual farm or raise a virtual fish in a virtual bowl.I really really dont care what type of liquorice allsort you are, nor do I give a purple flying fsck about your horoscope or fortune cookies. If you want to hug me then come to my house and wrap your arms around me, do not send me a picture of a scruffy fscking teddy bear, a rose, or a heart drawn by a lovesick 10 year old girl.
Why in smegging hell would I want to know who's been looking at your profile? Your life is my life. If you haven't got one then please dont try to usurp mine.
Sure, all the apps you mentioned are utterly pointless, but at the end of the day you only have to click the "block" button in order to never see them again. It's obvious that plenty of people like all that crap or it wouldn't be as popular as it is. It's not going away any time soon.
I can't help feeling that there is an obvious point being missed. The problem is not with the technology, but with the people who use and abuse it. It is a social phenomenon, not a technical issue. Yawping about technical fixes to suppress undesirable behaviour on Facebook is the antithesis of the perennial libertarian knee-jerk response to a government seeking to do the same with ASBOs, ID cards, national databases, etc. in orded to control our daily lives.
Either you wish to see paternalistic technical control regimes applied throughout modern life to protect people from their own stupidity, or you don't. Either that or you land in a bizarre land of cognitive dissonance where you are complaining that "the government is oppressing me, but Facebook doesn't protect me."
As far as Facebook is concerned, I say let natural selection take its course. If Facebook becomes unusable people will stop using it. If people are stupid, they should take the consequences.
Pot/kettle is indeed metaphore (as the point is that those are the same, not opposites). But it's the demand that FaceBook do more and AppStore do less...
The typical situation is that people shout there's too much rules and regulation and supervision as long as it gets into their way, and when things go pearshaped they shout there's not enough police and supervision and punishment. I have little patience with either shout as long as they're not backed up with a detailed plan to balance both sides, with a view to their costs and implementation (and they never are). (You want to lock up more people? Please pay more then to house + feed those.)
That said, I think Apple gets more flak than deserved, and are just not nannying enough: they should ban the "porn" apps from all sources, not just the small ones who don't make other things.
I've given up telling my friends to stop inviting and joining these things. Some of them must have joined all the available variation and still failed to notice that none of them do what they advertise.
Maybe I should have an automated questionnaire sent out to any friend requests.
Always amazes me how many seemingly sensible people are drawn in by this sort of nonsense, it's like they have some kind of disease which makes them click Confirm buttons.
And, depressingly, you know that if Peter Andre put something on Twitter about how these apps are dangerous, the word would get to the target audience veeeery quickly.
I'd like Facebook to add an option that allows me by default to see no third-party applications. At the moment I have to individually hide/block each one that appears in my feed, so a global tick-box to opt out of seeing any of them would be useful. I'm sure I'm not alone in that wish, either.
I know this is sounding like a broken record by now, but...
People flocked to Facebook because it was simpler/cleaner than the bloaty mess of MySpace. Now it's basically turned into MySpace... but people are still hooked.
Normally this is the point at which I'd dream of another glossy startup company which would come along and create something which is "like Facebook but simple"... but they'd only cock it up within a year or two, like Facebook.
"A bogus application that lures Facebook users by falsely offering to show who has been viewing their profile has been exposed as a scam."
Wow they must have had a crack team of scientists working on that. Maybe they brought Einstein back from the dead.
*sigh* I wish one of these lusers would finally expose Facebook as the scam it clearly is. But apparently selling your soul to Big Data Mining is fine.
It's as if people are complaining about being egged, even as the guy feigning sympathy and helping them wipe the egg off their face is planning to drop the entire chicken coup on their head later.
You can make people do any humiliating shit if their friends are doing it too. Yup, it's a good time to be a loner.
Personally, I stopped using Facebook a number of months ago. Mostly because I got fed up of the utter nonsense my 'friends' kept sending about how cute their cat was, or how they couldn't be bothered to do the ironing.
But my dilemma comes with regards my kids. Thankfully, they are young enough that with the oldest being 10, I can still use the 'not appropriate' argument and ignore the 'but Jack has it' retorts.
But with their increasing use of the internet for fun, news (FirstNews readers for a long time - wonderful, wonderful newspaper, and online content) and homework research, they are more often dipping toes into the sometimes troubled waters of the web.
My original philosophy ran similar to the, 'if people are stupid, let them take the consequences' attitude, but put that simply is just lazy. The diametric idea of censorship and control has a beautiful history of simply not working. So what happens to social responsibility?
This inevitably brings it back to 'education'.
As Anonymous Coward (0945) states, we (the El Reg Commentards) clearly have the requisite technical knowledge and long-nurtured, bitter cynicism to see facebook, twatter et al for what they are, and know to take the requisite precautions (or simply feign not to use it, then spend beer o'clock wittering about how crap it is).
But there will always be those who simply do not comprehend what they are doing; and for the moment, my kids are in that group. For them, the innocence of childhood still sees wonders everywhere, and to stifle this is to deny them simplistic joy that us grown ups have so often lost to the mundanity of daily life and taxes.
Thankfully, with guidance, direction and the occasional leap across the room to close a browser auto-redirected to BigDicksTightChicks, I can give them freedom without unrealistic dictates. My dilemma of responsibility is solved.
Now we just have to teach tolerance, understanding and self awareness to the rest of the blithely idiotic world population.
Better put the kettle on then.
Whether you like it or loathe it (personally I don't care but then I'm not a technology snob) you better get used to the fact that Facebook is major player on the web these days. Over 218,000,000 unique users in January 2010 (source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/8562801.stm) kind of indicates that you can't ignore it.
That makes Facebook stories relevant and those of you writing it off as only being used by "lusers" or "sheeple" are the ones that are missing a key trend in the industry. It might be a passing fad but while it's with us ignoring it isn't an option for anyone who wants to keep current.
A key trend in the industry of wilfully surrendering all your cognitive faculties to the collective unconscious.
"ignoring it isn't an option for anyone who wants to keep current"
keep current with pointless bullshit that is.
Facebook is just a way for old media hacks to give the appearance, the illusion, of being relevant. Notice how every news story now says "[cause x] even has a Facebook group where [y] number of people have [overly verbose bullshit z] to say about it" Does that help to enlighten or inform you in any way? Of course not. It's just a big disorganised cluster fuck of bar room banter.
At it's best. Play on the insecurity fears of the populace (do you know whether people are paying attention to you ?) and reap the rewards.
I use StalkerBook because it's a convenient way to keep in touch with lots of friends around the world at the same time, without resorting to mass e-mails.
Every one of my "friends" is someone I either went to school with or know in real life. Most of their posts are about stuff I am honestly curious about.
When its something that they just have to share but I could care less about ... well everyone on my facebook has my home phone number.
So when a friend is excited about some new job they just got, I'll see it when I check facebook then maybe I can call them to get the details and plan a celebration.
If they are excited about the increasingly cute thing their baby/cat just did, I waste .5 seconds of my life skimming past it.
...you can't stop the ones where they post a pic of their farm or have themselves tagged in a picture of their café. Don't these people understand we don't give a flying fish what they are up to on them?
The place is full of tracking groups and ones that claim to unlock various game items (when they are not hosted by the game writers). But the world has enough gullible retards to go around.