Yes, Facebook is in trouble. Hubris ruled the executive suites far too long since financial success overshadowed the common sense needed to limit the dangers that come on the horizon.
Suddenly, Facebook has not only become a social media location for 2 billion earthlings, it is also the location and funds that soil plants are deprived of for their own privacy; information that made others rich, leaving us to topple over who manipulated addicts. Apple's wall garden looks pretty good now, right?
Knowledge vs. Wisdom
Being fair about comparing privacy and security issues between Facebook and Apple is about like comparing, well, Apple to apples. They are not quite the same. But neither is the attitude taken by executives who run every business model.
Apple makes money in an old-fashioned way. Hardware sales. Yes, Services is a fast-growing division of Apple, but totally dependent on hardware sales, no? Apple has an interest in keeping the 1
Simply put, Facebook knows a lot more about you than Apple because the business model is designed to take information from you and use it to generate revenue and profits. Apple's model is the old-fashioned version where they make something customers like. Here's a Facebook Newsroom headline you'd like:
It's time to make our privacy tools easier to find
Fair enough. But what else does the headline say? It indicates that it was difficult to find privacy tools before Facebook was captured and manipulated user information.
We have heard loud and clear that privacy settings and other important tools are too difficult to find and that we need to do more to keep people informed.
Remember that there is a measure of security through obscurity . Out of sight, out of mind. Facebook hid access to such privacy management tools because if too many hundreds of millions of Facebook users managed their own privacy settings, the company would not make as much profit.
Also remember that Apple collects information from customers as well, but it is not part of the business model, so our favorite iPhone and Mac manufacturer can afford to anonymize the information. Data collection still benefits Apple, still benefits app developers, and in the long run benefits Apple customers – you and I – without invading our privacy or manipulating our behavior.
Put another way, Facebook only knows more about us than Apple could ever find out, so it's better that Apple doesn't have to know.
We've redesigned our entire settings menu on top-to-bottom mobile devices to make things easier to find. Instead of having settings spread across nearly 20 different screens, they are now available from one location. We've also cleaned up outdated settings so it's clear what information can and can't be shared with apps.
Thank you, Facebook, for being influenced by government and public outcry and a wave of shame that finally brought your leaders to their senses to do just what should have been done after the company's startup.
Why is Facebook doing this? The business model relies on collecting and using and selling user information, so Facebook has collected – and used – as much as possible; legally or otherwise. And without revealing how it has been used.
Some people want to delete things they've shared before, while others are just curious about the information Facebook has. So we introduce Access Your Information – a secure way for people to access and manage their information, such as posts, comments, comments, and things you've searched for.
Oh, and legislation. Some countries already use privacy and information law, and Facebook's recent actions are designed to stop or slow down or help control such measures as quickly as possible.
It is also our responsibility to tell you how we collect and use your data in languages that are detailed but also easy to understand. Over the coming weeks, we will be proposing updates to Facebook's Terms of Service which include our obligations to people. We will also update our data policy to clarify what data we collect and how we use it. These updates are about transparency – not about acquiring new rights to collect, use or share data.
I have no doubt that tens of millions of Facebook users will leave the social media giant, but with more than 2 billion users, that's a small price to pay. More openness is not about those who go, but more about keeping regulators away from the door.
What about Apple's ecosystem of walls in the garden? No, Apple is not perfect. The 2017 fiasco about appalling iPhone performance in iOS 10 indicates more that Apple wanted to do the right thing, but did it wrong. But Apple's entire business model is based on making customers happy, while Facebook's business model is to take information from users to the company's advantage.
Big difference, no?