Friday, December 14, 2007

About Face at FaceBook Is A Good Thing

By Holly Ross
There was a lot of hoopla over the recent announcement by Facebook about its Social Ads program, called Beacon. And by hoopla, I mean near hysteria-level complaining.

The blogosphere was aghast at the idea of the opt-out based advertising scheme. Apparently, the fine folks at FaceBook have seen the error of their ways. Mark Zuckerberg posted to the FaceBook blog:

About a month ago, we released a new feature called Beacon to try to help people share information with their friends about things they do on the web. We've made a lot of mistakes building this feature, but we've made even more with how we've handled them. We simply did a bad job with this release, and I apologize for it.

In response, they are implementing a couple of interesting changes:
  • First, you will have to opt-in to display any Beacon advertising in your news stream, etc., instead of having to opt-out. Additionally, if you fail to respond to the opt-in request that is generated when you interact with a Beacon site, the system does not display the advertising. This is a significant and good change.
  • Second, you can opt-out of the dang thing to begin with. Just go to your FaceBook privacy settings and click on the link for External Web sites.

***This item is from the blog of Holly Ross, executive director of NTEN, a technology support organization. It was edited slightly. Email her at holly@nptimes.com. The Web site is www.nten.org

This article is from NPT TechnoBuzz, a publication of The NonProfit Times. Subscribe to NPT TechnoBuzz or any of our other enewsletters and get the latest nonprofit news and stories delivered to your inbox.

No comments: