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Related article here. I use both Facebook and Instagram with the awareness that my data is being mined in probably unimaginable ways, but asking for driver's licenses (or birth certificates!) is a bridge too far. Especially for people who use a pen name or stage name for professional reasons, or reasons of personal security.

Get a signed print of this cartoon from the artist.

Originally posted to Comics on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 06:50 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  it's like the tenfold increase in spam I receive (6+ / 0-)

    when using CareerBuilder only once

    Warning - some snark above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ "We're like a strip club with a million bouncers and no strippers." (HBO's Real Time, January 18, 2013)

    by annieli on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 06:54:20 AM PST

  •  I never got Instagram (18+ / 0-)

    Why would I want to make my photos look shittier?  I guess maybe it's because I'm old enough to remember Polaroids when they were just a way to take dirty pictures without involving the guy at the Fotomat.

    "Don't be defeatist, dear. It's very middle class." - Violet Crawley

    by nightsweat on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:04:34 AM PST

  •  Never been on Facebook.... (9+ / 0-)

    And it's stories like this that keep me off of it.

    “Only after the last tree has been cut down, only after the last river has been poisoned, only after the last fish has been caught, only then will you find that money cannot be eaten” -- Cree prophecy

    by caul on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:08:54 AM PST

  •  They can ask all they want, (9+ / 0-)

    but I'm not gonna give it to them. When it gets that intrusive, I'm outta there.

    "Mit der Dummheit kämpfen Götter selbst vergebens," -Friedrich Schiller "Against Stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in Vain"

    by pengiep on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:10:40 AM PST

  •  It's nice to know that information about me (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    renzo capetti, foresterbob, DSPS owl

    has value to someone.

    Economics is a social *science*. Can we base future economic decisions on math?

    by blue aardvark on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:10:57 AM PST

  •  There are NO stage names! (4+ / 0-)

    You are your handle!

    And if it gets popular enough, it belongs to the company!



    I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

    by detroitmechworks on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:17:41 AM PST

  •  Facebook is dying anyhow (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MKDAWUSS, Omir the Storyteller

    People are taking longer and longer breaks, the kids don't think it's cool anymore and are moving on to other services, and Facebook still hasn't figured out how to actually make much money off of what they do.

    This is the Internet. You simply can not count on your "Next Big Thing" being the next big thing for very long. There's another umpteen bazillion next big things just waiting to eat your lunch as soon as people get bored with you.

    Hey, remember MySpace? Hehe.

    •  I give it a couple more years before (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Facebook becomes an internet graveyard, exhibiting life in a previous era. By then we'll all have moved on to whatever the next big thing is going to be (and no, I don't have any clue as to what it's going to be).

      •  And after that, interoperable social media (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Social media will become an interoperable service, like email. It won't matter who is hosting your account, or what servers your friends have accounts on. Facebook, MySpace, Google+, and who knows how many others will all learn to play nicely together, and the particular server you use will not matter any more than the particular domain name after the @ sign in your email address, or the cellular carrier you use.

        And after THAT, only old people will use social media at all. The kids will all be using pheromone clouds or something.

        "In Korea, email is for old people" -- Some nice young lady from South Korea, circa 2004

        How to annoy a millennial.

    •  I figured this would happen long ago (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SethRightmer, lotlizard, Caipirinha

      I mean, I've been on the tubes pretty much since before there were tubes. I've seen BBSes, Compuserve, Usenet, the WELL, AOL, MySpace, LiveJournal and countless others that I've forgotten about come and go. (Well, usually they don't go, but they become a shadow of what they used to be.) I figured early on that Facebook would make a big splash and a bunch of people would make a boatload of money, and then the public would be off to the Next Big Thing.

      Now if only I could figure out what the Next Big Thing was going to be so I could have my $15 billion of fame . . .

      If you can't say anything nice about the GOP, please post here more often.

      by Omir the Storyteller on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 09:38:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Old School, Represent! (3+ / 0-)

        I was an old school BBS kid myself, Commodore 64 boards, mostly. Even before that, my dad had us connected to Compuserve and GEnie through our TRS-80 model 1.

        The nature of this beast is rapid, ceaseless change. As they say, fame is fleeting.

        I do love to be able to make claims prefaced with "Well, back in MY day..." Hehe. And then I shake my cane at the kids who won't get off my lawn.

  •  FaceBook (11+ / 0-)

    Recently, I took some pictures and posted them there.  Someone shared the album. The weird thing? FaceBook won't tell me who it was, something about privacy settings. I don't have permission to know who shared my album.


    "Taxes are for the little people" - Leona Helmsley (before being sent to jail for tax evasion)

    by Land of Enchantment on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:27:01 AM PST

  •  i don't know why the slug that owns FB (3+ / 0-)

    Is so dedicated to being despised.
    But that's his hobby, apparently.

    clime parches on. terms: ocean rise, weather re-patterning, storm pathology, drout-famine, acceptance of nature.

    by renzo capetti on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:27:30 AM PST

  •  Maybe it's because I work for a large online (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    foresterbob, Jen Sorensen

    services company (not FB), but I am at least tolerant of this sort of thing. I'm not sure that the general public knows exactly how complicated the infrastructure is behind something like Facebook or how much money is required to support it: it takes a lot of specialized equipment and a large number of highly skilled workers. That money has to come from somewhere.

    Because you don't pay a fee to use Facebook, you are instead "paying" for it by looking at advertising. And the more that advertiser knows about you, the more valuable those ads become, because the advertiser can be more certain that she is marketing to the people she wants to market to. Hence, this sort of aggressive mining and protection of user demographic data.

    If people really objected to this so very strongly, they would be willing to pay a small user fee to use an ad-free site. But market experience shows that they are not; customers are only consistently willing to pay for sex (porn sites, premium dating sites) and money (premium stock market advice). Friendship, apparently, isn't worth paying for, so we have advertising-based social networking :)

    Visit Lacking All Conviction, your patch of grey on those too-sunny days.

    by eataTREE on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:28:30 AM PST

    •  Some people won't even pay $0.99 for a song (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eataTREE, Jen Sorensen

      from a band that they supposedly "love."  They'd rather steal from the band instead. I read on-line reviews in the Android Market where people say "I loved the app, but I'm giving it one star in my review because I have to pay $1.99 for it and it should have been free!"

      People are cheap, and they get what they pay for.

      Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!

      by bigtimecynic on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:43:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I am willing to forgive a certain amount of (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Oaktown Girl

        music piracy among youth and starving students. If you are a grown up with a job, there is no excuse: pay for the things you use. And if you don't, well, don't blame the music industry for producing Justin Bieber's music when Justin Bieber's fans are consistently actually paying for it, but you aren't paying for yours because, y'know, fuck the man.

        Our digital age appears to have wrought a certain sense of entitlement. Witness, too, the gamers who seem to think it's economically supportable to provide them with a perpetual stream of new content for a game after they've paid $50 for it once.

        Visit Lacking All Conviction, your patch of grey on those too-sunny days.

        by eataTREE on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:53:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I can forgive it when the music stolen (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          from some successful mega-group where all commercial parties have more than recouped their investments.  But it ticks me off when it's small or indy musicians trying to make a go of it.

          Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room!

          by bigtimecynic on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:57:01 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I take issue with the model of copying as stealing (0+ / 0-)

            A much better model is to ask whether those involved in the success of a work have been deprived of income.

            Firstly this factors in assistants, studio techs, promoters, distributors, middle men, etc. They all deserve a cut as well as the artists, though one can make a moral assessment of in what proportions those rewards should be.

            Secondly, it makes it clearer that copying can increase that income. If artists get distributed amongst people who won't buy their work without it being free (it seems to be an article of faith amongst some that such people don't exist-- I'd suggest that's unrealistic, and a little egotistical) then almost certainly more people who will pay to support it will be made aware of it, and so sales increase.

            To clarify, if the only alternatives are people not having the music or having the music and paying nothing, then no harm is done, even though supposedly "theft" has occurred.

            In some cases these are not the only alternatives, and people have the disposable income to pay: that is the issue, not the over-general metaphorical "theft". (However, I should note that I recognise this is the current established legal view and that I have no intention to break the law)

            The key is to create a culture where people want to support artists and their co-workers, not one of fear of reprisal. Ask yourself: of love and fear, which is more consistent with the rest of your worldview and politics?

      •  They want more. I remember the old days when (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I got a beautiful 16 x 16 album sleeve and an enclosed poster.  I think I was paying less than 99 cents a song.

        I pay 99cents without a problem and love it. Because I appreciate only having to pay for the song I want and getting it right away.  Maybe the kids don't. But if the kids won't, they might when the right gimmick is found.

        guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

        by 88kathy on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 08:44:03 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The kids, per se, are paying... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          tweens and early adolescents haven't grown up in a culture where the people who were interested in digital music were also culturally tolerant of piracy, and also they aren't particularly technically savvy, so they buy Justin Bieber downloads in droves.

          Music piracy is highest in the demographic that also complains the loudest about the music industry not catering to their preferences: 18-34 year old males.

          Visit Lacking All Conviction, your patch of grey on those too-sunny days.

          by eataTREE on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 10:07:03 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  But Daily Kos is worth paying for. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      88kathy, YucatanMan

      Membership here is a small price to pay for freedom from ads.

    •  I don't mind looking at advertisements. When I (0+ / 0-)

      click on a free service and find out it's not and my e-mail account gets hacked by them, are they getting a new customer?

      If everyone steals from everyone, people aren't going to want to go there.

      I don't know what the problem is.  People love to shop.  People love to buy things.  I would love to be able to type in that I wanted a purple hat with yellow bows, for underwater diving and get a hit.  But I can't because I get 90,000 hits for things I don't want.  It's like going to the freaking mall.  You get mall stuff and that is all.

      The internet just needs to grow up.

      guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

      by 88kathy on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 08:36:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Anonymity in the public square is sacred (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eataTREE, YucatanMan, lotlizard

      I also work in IT, and help manage our CRM, so I can understand where you're coming from.


      Anonymity in the public square must be sacred. If you want to self-identify, that's fine. Many people do. If you don't want to you shouldn't have to.

      What would happen to political discourse if EVERY PERSON needed to be run through a social security check before that discourse could take place? What would YOU say if you knew the government was watching?

      It's true, FB is mostly stoopid pictures of cats doing stoopid things and people talking about the hangovers from the night before.

      But it's a dangerous precedent. Let alone the risks involved for actually storing and maintaining data like social security and driver license info.

      What separates us, divides us, and diminishes the human spirit.

      by equern on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 09:38:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Okay, sure... (0+ / 0-)

        ...but Facebook isn't the "public square", it's private property. (Private property with incredibly high maintenance and upkeep costs, as I mentioned.) Admittance is therefore on the basis that you identify yourself to them so that they know you are a real person for the purpose of their advertising stats.

        Either advertisers pay, in which case Facebook has to be able to distinguish between a 42-year old male interested in automobile purchases and the account of Fluffy The Dog; or you pay up front. And as nobody wants to choose the latter, they are by default choosing the former.

        Visit Lacking All Conviction, your patch of grey on those too-sunny days.

        by eataTREE on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 10:10:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The problem is (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      YucatanMan, lotlizard

      "Lacking All Conviction"

      FB , APPEARED to be rather innocent at 1st , then expanded into a corporate grab bag , buying patterns and demographics are one thing , but now they are selling info to employers and anyone else who has the ability to screw you over , it is not as innocent a picture as you make it out to be

      People are aware of what was happening , but a majority of people are pretty clueless , and that is the deception on FB's part , they are taking advantage of THE UNAWARE , and they know it at this point

      There was a time in america when you could trust your fellow citizen , that was a long time ago now tho

       are the nefarious capitalists any better than the old school east german secret police at this point?


    •  Good point about unwillingness to pay (4+ / 0-)

      It is for that reason that I understand and accept the targeted ads on FB. But requiring people's legal names and kicking them off the site if they use something different seems extreme.

  •  strictly for business (3+ / 0-)

    shut down my personal account long ago.

    Now, just to promote the business and most information there is available elsewhere (such as my web site).

    Never trust a large company to handle your information or business

    "The only person sure of himself is the man who wishes to leave things as they are, and he dreams of an impossibility" -George M. Wrong.

    by statsone on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:31:16 AM PST

  •  Social Security's website has a deal with a (0+ / 0-)

    company that gets you to disclose the answers to those security questions that can get you into accounts and websites if you don't have the password.

    How much do they charge the company? Get this! They pay the company!

  •  The quest for individual marketing info (6+ / 0-)

    has really gotten out of hand.  I hate it when a retail establishment tells me, "You can get $2 or $3 off your bill today if you'll fill out this survey" which invariably wants my name, address, phone (home, work, cell) and email address, or has the checkout clerk offer me the opportunity to get 10% off my purchase if I'll apply for the store's credit card, or tells me I can be entered in a contest for $1000 shopping spree if I will hand over all my contact information "so we can contact you if you win."  Yeah right.

    I have dummy internet accounts set up to use so my regular email, facebook and twitter accounts won't be spammed into uselessness by these data miners.

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:39:54 AM PST

    •  Disturbs me to look up something on the google (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      then return here and see ads for the thing I just looked up instantly. I made the mistake of wondering what a spanx was. Now it's been months with spanx banner ads nearly everywhere I go. Dude, even if I was in the market for whatever you call those things (and that would be ridiculous in the extreme), that kind of stalker marketing would be a dealbreaker.

      If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

      by CwV on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 09:31:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Good thing you weren't researching (0+ / 0-)

        A word of advice: Don't.

        I used to have the problem you describe at work (went searching for something like wireless routers and all of the sudden every ad on every page was for a wireless router) but never have at home. Oddly both happened on Linux machines, RedHat Enterprise at work and Ubuntu at home. Go figure.

        If you can't say anything nice about the GOP, please post here more often.

        by Omir the Storyteller on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 09:45:19 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Checkout clerk: "Can we have you zip code?" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      "No, thank you."

      "ummmmmmm...."  (manager assistance needed at register three)

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 01:42:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yahoo does the same thing (0+ / 0-)

    A long time ago, my Yahoo email account was hacked. When I contacted customer service they said I needed to send them my driver's license, and answer my security question. Well, whoever hacked my account had changed my security question, because he wasnt a complete moron. And no way was I sending them my DL.

    So I just had to deal with losing 8 years of my internet history in stored emails and other pieces of that Yahoo account.

    Thanks Yahoo.

    •  My Yahoo accounts are clean as a whistle. (0+ / 0-)

      No contacts no history.  It got hacked.  Comment below.  I wiped them out.  Now I receive and delete.  No address books. Nothing.

      Hey if I went to the Safeway and kept getting hit by rogue carts, I wouldn't go back there either.

      guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

      by 88kathy on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 08:27:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I unfacebooked everyone. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Now I am deleting everything it my account.  I guess I really don't need to do that because it probably only calls attention.  And likely can't be deleted or has already been used.

    I clicked on a friend's link and gave that link my e-mail address that's all it took.  They sent out my contacts e-mail from me.

    My g-daughter's facebook account is always hacked but then she can't help clicking on the latest boy bands.

    Hey if Amazon or Netflix had ever done that to me they wouldn't have the loyal customer they have.  Facebook and all the playgrounds are not fun if you can't play.

    guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

    by 88kathy on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 08:23:47 AM PST

    •  When you "delete" from Facebook, you really only (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lotlizard, 88kathy

      hide it from yourself.  Facebook retains all data and photos.  And those comments you made and photos you posted still appear in the old News Feeds of your "friends."

      Anything that goes on Facebook is there forever.  I read about an Austrian law student who undertook a long battle to get Facebook to provide him with everything it had on him.  Eventually, legally, he forced them to.

      It was over 1000 pages info made into a PDF !!!

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 01:46:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is why it cracks me up when (3+ / 0-)

    people get in a frenzy about government spying on them.  Marketing is a stronger force than chasing terrorists could ever be.  Amazon and Google not only know my bra size, they know my favorite brand.  They know I prefer natural fiber yarns, I do Yoga, I'm an angry white woman, I read tons of trash with my good books, I buy religious sheet music for advanced keyboard players, I have on old iPhone and a really old iPod, I quit Twitter but stick with DK, I research politics back to the Founders, I think we need a sperm tax to fund Professional Mother status for women who can't access birth control or abortions, I think we should scare the crap out of Dominionists by using drones to spy on them and I'd be happy to take away your guns if you really believe in One World Order and Obama was born in Kenya.  

    I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

    by I love OCD on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 08:24:23 AM PST

    •  THIS^^^^^ (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      I love OCD, Cassandra Waites

      For 99.99 percent of us, government spying is harmless, so they know where I am and that I am left of center, whoopie, I'd tell them that to their faces if they had the cojones to face me. It's not like I'm planning a revolution.
      It's Corporate spying that worries me.

      If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

      by CwV on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 09:35:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't even care about corporate spying. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CwV, Jen Sorensen, Cassandra Waites

        The fact is that I'm wired to the world, nothing is secret, and I choose that.  I could be off the grid and hard to locate, but the horses have left that barn, decades ago, and the barn will become a Call Center for Chinese corporations if we don't get serious about becoming a small business economy.

        I'm really concerned about climate change, economic policy, fairness, equality.  I've been unemployable in the corporate world for decades.  They know I'm an alcoholic/addict with a 47 year documented mental health history.  It doesn't matter I've been sober 37 years, have a high IQ and eidetic memory, that I was finally treated for PTSD and now function quite normally.  All that info is out there.  In a well- ordered world I couldn't buy a bow, much less a gun.  Praise FSM.   I really couldn't get wildly upset if Homeland Security had me flagged.  On paper I look like someone you want to watch, even if that's really unfair.

        I just want to be able to work a good job and buy nice Christmas gifts for people I love.  Plus really good shoes.  

        I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

        by I love OCD on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 10:56:33 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I think corporate spying is wrong too. We should (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      have the strict privacy laws that most of Europe has.

      Corporate spying is only one step away from being used by a repressive or fascist government to categorize people and discriminate against them.

      AT&T and Verizon both allowed the NSA to spin off copies of Internet traffic on all their customers long before Congress made it "legal."  

      What keeps Facebook from using its billion+ archive of photos and the facial recognition software they developed from being a branch of the NSA?   One phone call? A visit by a clean-cut agent with a polite request?

      Advertising is a pernicious force and should be regulated, controlled and restricted.  Personal Privacy should be protected from marketing exploitation.

      But, yeah, I'm dreaming . . . .

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 01:50:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah you are, and I was pretty (0+ / 0-)

        privacy protective when I was younger and still dreaming.

        Even without the internet and Google and tracking software I was in some systems somehow, and information on me was available to possible employers.  

        So really we're basically vulnerable to fascists and better bust ass to keep them out of power or be prepared for those re-education camps the RW fantasizes about.  

        Talk about projection being a vulnerability.  Every time they open their mouths with a new Obama Fear they tell us what they've got planned for everyone who isn't them.

        I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

        by I love OCD on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 10:33:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  They're also using this info to set prices (3+ / 0-)

    i.e., people with browser/buying history that makes a site think they're richer or in more need of a product will get a higher price. The consumerist posts before/after screenshots from people who clear their cookies and get different prices.

    We're getting closer to textbook first degree price discrimination every day.

    •  I've seen that myself. I'll search for prices on (0+ / 0-)

      something, then research the product some more.  Then decide to wait a bit and see what other products might work.

      When I go back to the product, the price is higher, particularly at sites like Amazon.  If I clear my cookies or do a clean sweep of the machine for temp files, cookies, history, etc, the price is lower.


      "We'll take all the money we can from you," seems to be the motto.  Crooked b@stards!

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 01:56:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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