Gogol would have been proud.
My cat has a facebook account. She died a few months ago but they still send her email.
Facebook's three-year experiment with user democracy now looks doomed, with a vote over the social network's new terms and conditions coming just under 299,500,000 votes short of the total needed to block the changes. The proposed changes will eliminate the current user voting system, which was established in 2009 as a token …
Surely a company like FB has the ability to look at average logins, last login, etc. per account and use that to determine if it's real. Given the nature of FB usage (e.g., check every 5 minutes when bored at work), one login 6 months ago = dead account. These days two weeks without a login probably means it's dead...
I don't even remember *seeing* an invite to vote for anything. Surely it's only democracy if you let the punters know the vote is actually happening.
I sent links to a number of avid Facebook users, and my notice was the first they'd heard of it. Like Fred Flintstone (above) suggests, this was a clever use of the dead user accounts. I think this whole thing was better publicised among those of us who don't use Facebook.
I don't remember "seeing" an invite to vote either... I read about it from another source, and after fifteen minutes of poking around, found the site to vote... and FB refused to process or acknowledge my vote... Which leaves open the possibility that FB/Zuckerberg saw how the vote was going and just disabled the vote process so the next to impossible to reach requirement became, in fact, impossible to downvote the proposed changes.
Fail... because that's where FB is headed.
I keep reading about this "democracy" of Facebook, but I've never even browsed Facebook let alone had an account, so maybe I'm not informed enough to merit this post. But, 300 million human votes? That would imply 900 million real people use Facebook actively. Even without the dead accounts being factored in, I'm not sure that would be possible. However, if Facebook supposedly prevails in social networking, and they didn't even get a third of a third (1/3/3) of their users to vote, then something isn't "networking" properly.
I take it that this was just a marketing campaign that backfired and now they have to sink it, without attaching the word "democracy" to the plunge. Or maybe they will get bail out money and keep the dream alive!
How do you press forward with your (unpopular) plans and still appear somewhat democratic?
1. make the period where people can vote short
2. set the minimum number of participants for it to be valid rather high
3a. do NOT inform anyone by email (and hope they don't log in either)
3b. but DO keep spamming them with other irrelevant stuff that happened in their absence
And bingo! Vote invalid and they can tell their users that they gave them the opportunity, but only a minority of the user base [including fake/dead profiles] opposed. Back to business as usual (that is bending privacy laws and concerns as much as possible).
Title says most of it... I'm curious what the current active users are? (and by active I mean more than twice a week) Seems like most folks around me only check it once a week or so nowadays. The wife and daughter are on Pinterest all the time.
I wouldn't go quite so far as to suggest that there are only 1/2 million active users. However, the number is so far removed from the 1 billion claimed users that it takes the breath away. Not even close to 1/10% suggests something is seriously amiss.
Someone suggested above that FB would have the means to judge the number of active accounts by seeing when there last was a login. I'm thinking that they are likely to deny that ability, because the number could have some serious legal ramifications regarding their IPO and all the lawsuits that resulted.
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The link to the voting page was posted on your Timeline and published to almost 1 BILLION people via emails and posted on the terms and conditions link at the bottom of every page you visit while logged into Facebook. If you didn't see it you were not looking or not actively participating in the online democracy beloved by almost none of our users.
We at Facebook made a decision in Q3 2012 to phase out users who only want to use our product for free and never bother clicking on advertisements even though a large part of the user component knows that advertisements are the only reason why their 314 friends knew their dog has the shits, the cat hacked up a furrball and the baby's poop looks like we now know where the missing LEGO's went. If you don't want a bunch of spam and intrusive marketing then don't use the FREE services you claim to love so much, and you DO use them. We KNOW.
We also know that even if the company tanks tomorrow nearly everyone involved in writing this demoralizing and dehumanizing email will bring home more money than your entire family will during your lifetime. We really and honestly don't care what you think*.
*Any thoughts created, expressed, construed, discussed or otherwise constructed during the reading of this email by an authenticated user grants Facebook Inc. permanent and non-regressive rights to any and all of the aforementioned with the first right of remediation being mediation held in our offices with a large angry gun wielding man behind you. If you do agree click 'Please don't kill me.' If you do not agree click 'Where's my daughter - OK.'
The fact anyone expects them to act democratically in the first place seems a bit daft. A company would be foolish to allow a mechanism where users can dictate how things are run rather than merely suggest desired changes. the site is FB's property, it's their responsibility to decide how they run it - and users should vote with their feet just like any other product.
"it's their responsibility to decide how they run it - and users should vote with their feet just like any other product"
This is true but the reason it started is people *were* voting with their feet, so they put together a supposedly democratic system which worked fine until a few weeks ago when facebook forgot why the system is there in the first place.
We voted, they ignored the vote because they didn't like the outcome like it's Egypt or something, had another vote with even more absurd voting target they don't like that and we'll see what happens. Civil war possibly. Oh wait no that's Egypt again..
Facebook had a checkbox at the bottom of the vote page to share your vote with your friends - however, I ran several tests of this checkbox with several accounts and it didn't work. Seems clear to me that Facebook didn't want people to know the vote existed or that friends had voted against the changes.
I don't use Facebook but I have a basic profile just so people can see I'm not dead. Tried to vote against this but (as usual when it's busy) the site didn't display properly and came up in text-only format, there was no apparent link to the vote from the voting information page and I just gave up. I suspect a few million other people did the same.
Imagine a General Election where the location of the polling booths was not made public.
I posted a reminder to vote on my (cat's) Facebook page and not one of my (cat's) "Ffriends" responded. I must say I'm getting bored with the pages of sentimental drivel and pix of group-mugging for the camera they all post so their complacency on this issue may lead me to dump Fbook finally.
Facebook don't want user democracy they just want to know your life's intricate details to sell onto advertisers and the like.
Getting 1/3 of the user base to vote to for/against changes is impossible - most users dismiss Facebook messages popping up with T&C changes, most others take a quick read then give up because they just want to post about what they had for dinner!
Facebook's only interest is Facebook. And owning you.
I wouldn't even call the vote a token gesture. To begin with, they're counting every single account as a user despite the fact that a significant percentage of them have left Facebook for one reason or another. Or aren't even people. On top of that, how much of the user base even knew about the vote? I never got any kind of notification about it.
Another Facebook complaint, completely unrelated: Facebook claimed to me that a good friend of mine liked Mitt Romney in the weeks leading up to the election. The problem with this is that this friend died in a motorcycle wreck in May 2011. It really makes me wonder what they're saying that I like.
... check out the nigh on 90,000 FB users all posting the same brainless statement on this Governance page http://www.facebook.com/notes/facebook-site-governance/responding-to-your-feedback/10152321231735301
There's one good reason to stay away from the low intelligence sheep attractor that is Facebook.
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