Friday, May 14, 2010

I am Deactivating then Deleting my Facebook Account

I just posted the following message to my Facebook account. Since it will be going away soon, I figured I'd repeat it here.

Goodbye Facebook. The evidence is overwhelming. Facebook has proven itself unworthy of my trust with even the little personal information I have chosen to share with it (basically a name, picture, and e-mail address. As soon as I figure out how to do it, I will be deleting my account. Seriously, they don't make it easy. There are instructions here:

I'm tired of blocking/ignoring app requests because Facebook passes my contact details to whoever owns the app (not identified), not just my friends. Who wants more spam? I'm tired of trying to dig through the mounting pile of privacy settings just to do what I came on here to do: Communicate with you - my friends and family - and only you.

Here's a timeline of Facebook terms of service changes relating to Privacy up to Dec 2009:
Here's a more visual representation of how the default settings have made more and more of our personal information public:

The more recent changes in April extend to following me around the web and sharing even more of what I do, say, and what you say about me (which may reveal more personal info than I had intended) with third party companies. Facebook's response to user questions and complaints in an interview with the New York Times - - unapologetically says "Everything is opt-in on Facebook. Participating in the service is a choice." That's very interesting spin. It means, by having a Facebook account, I "opt-in" by default to all the poorly-explained personal information sharing that Facebook wants to do and may want to expand into in the future. Details about their recent changes are all over the web but are also so confusing that it's not worth the time for the limited functionality I get from Facebook. So, I'm taking their advice and opting-out the only feasible way Facebook now offers.

If you would like to stay connected with me, you can find me at my personal blog - - where I know what the rules are and you probably already have my e-mail address, chat logons, twitter account, or some other way to reach me.

If not, take care. It was nice catching up. Perhaps the next Livejournal/Friendster/MySpace/Facebook iteration will be better. Perhaps open, federated standards for identity online will become both available and useful one day soon. Perhaps we'll meet again.


Anonymous said...

So I am convinced. I have had my misgivings about all this for some time, evidenced by my lack of participation in the time suck that is Facebook. So I am now free to talk to the people I want to talk to, and ignore the people I want to ignore.

AG Crazylegs said...

Yeah, wasn't that such an awkward experience, choosing to ignore people? What kind of nastygram do you get when you're ignored or do we all just hope the ignored person forgets they ever asked?