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Facebook Is Watching You

We all know that Facebook records metrics of everything you do–posts, which groups you visit, what you click on and how long you stare at a given screen before scrolling away. They record all your personal data, what videos you watch, who your friends are, whether you tend to like Republican posts versus Democrat posts and so on. Supposedly this data is collected so they can serve you more meaningful ads (as if there is such a thing.)

The other day I was conducting some business in the private messaging windows. This is not uncommon because I have several business pages–one for Sedona, one for Moon Shadows and one for Dragons. As I typed the message I mentioned I accepted payment via paypal or check. Suddenly a Facebook message pops up below mine: “Is this message about making a payment? Yes or No?”

Really Facebook? I’m kind of busy here, and I don’t need you spying and popping in with advice on how to make or accept payments. In fact, this is supposed to be a PRIVATE transaction so I really don’t want you here at all!

We continued the conversation. I had selected “NO” above because it’s none of FB’s business at this point, and I don’t care what they think or want to know.

A few lines later I typed, “Thank you!”

And Facebook showed up again: “Is this message about thanking someone? Yes or No?”

GOOD GRIEF. It’s obvious their spy software saw the words “Thank you” and decided to pop into the conversation like an untrained puppy jumping up on your clean white pants. Yeah, puppies are cute. Facebook is not.

In case you weren’t aware–Facebook apparently listens in on private chats, private messages and private groups. If you have something private, you might want to conduct it elsewhere. Sure, the NSA can access your email, but at least they aren’t popping in with questions about what you are doing while you are doing it.

I have to be on Facebook because that is where fans and people are right now. But I don’t have to “like” them!!!

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Posted: August 7, 2017


  1. Google is no better.

    Went to update the YouTube app on Android phone. “YouTube also needs access to: Contacts, Location, SMS, Microphone and Device ID and Call information. It already has access to Identity, Photos/Media/Files, Camera and WiFi connection information.”

    I skipped the update. YouTube doesn’t “need” access to my contacts and call information. Neither does anyone else, for that matter. Not unless they’re going to pay me when they sell that info to someone else. Or give me a cut of the ad revenue.

    Comment by Randy — August 8, 2017 @ 9:25 am

  2. I thought they had to allow you to opt out of that option. I usually do with apps. I think there was only one that wouldn’t allow me to continue without access but it was a little nothing thing and they probably were just fudging the rules.

    Comment by April — August 8, 2017 @ 10:33 am

  3. As far as I can tell there is no opt out. I have my privacy settings on my personal page as high as they will let me set them. On business pages, there are no privacy settings at all. Some authors are now creating private groups for their books instead of pages so that they have a little more control. I’m just spending more time on my blog. It’s bad enough that fb records everything, but to pop up in the middle of private messaging to let you know they’ve seen the words “paypal” and “thank you” is a bit much.

    Google has also been spying for years, but apparently they are getting more aggressive.

    Comment by Maria — August 8, 2017 @ 10:40 am

  4. Sorry Maria – I was responding to Randy’s comment. I’m pretty sure the FB stuff is non-opt-outable, the stinkers. I was thinking of outside apps on FB and on phones etc. having to have that option available.

    Comment by April — August 8, 2017 @ 11:04 am

  5. I wasn’t sure–but there was no opt out. I’ve run into this sort of thing when commenting on articles as well. They want my fb friends list, my twitter list, my email, my phone number…it’s just ridiculous.

    Comment by Maria — August 8, 2017 @ 11:11 am

  6. From what I can tell, in order to use the new YouTube app, you must give it the new permissions. I’ve seen some things that various settings may be things you can change in newer versions of Android, but honestly, I don’t know that for sure.

    I launched the old version of the app, and it came up with a splash screen asking me to update, and said I would have to allow new permissions.

    I looked around, and some people are griping about it on forums and such. Others, I’m sure, are just oblivious and don’t care. I do. These companies think nothing of stepping way over the line, because not enough people say no.

    Comment by Randy — August 8, 2017 @ 4:32 pm

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