Thursday, January 31, 2008

Refusenicks: The anti-Facebook movement

London Times: A new anti-Facebook movement is spreading across the UK. Known as the "Facebook refusenicks," the network of students are founding chapters at universities across Britain. The group's chief complaint is that Facebook compromises user privacy in gathering user data and selling it to advertisers.
Of course, "refusenicks" often find themselves out of the loop when it comes to student events, as most promoters have turned exclusively to Facebook to get the word out about parties, clubs, etc. "I felt like a complete stranger," said one of the group's members after her first week at school. "I had to find out from other students what nights were being held, and still do." Another student, who fancies himself as the nonconformist type, added, "What happened to the good old posters and flyers? Now it's just Facebook this, Facebook that. I'm sick of it, which is why I refuse to create a profile."
The group's main message is that Facebook's decision to open itself to the public and then open its users' data to advertise has alienated members who originally joined the social network for its small, private, student community based structure. Nowadays, Facebook even broadcasts profiles to

Just the type of anti social behaviour that I love
Ooh. Facebook does feel creepy these days. I can't blame these kids for being the last bastions of old skool university communication.
They do have a strong point- students who originally joined Facebook were after private structure. Even though most of these students would have graduated by now.

Ultimately I think it's too hard for people to delete profiles when most of their friends are interacting on Facebook. It's got a stranglehold on us now so unless we get Face-bored we're in this for the long haul.

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