User data ownership on Facebook and why it doesn't matter

Geesh, everyone got their panties in a bunch over the weekend due to Facebook’s new terms of service.

Truth is it doesn’t matter.

If you are uploading your content to, and participating online with, you are giving a HUGE amount of ownership to services that, well, you really don’t control.

They can go out of business. They can delete your account. They can make money off of your content. They probably all have wacky stuff in their terms of services.

This is true for Flickr. For YouTube. For Twitter. For Facebook. For all of them.

I’ve been yelling and screaming about how Facebook has been treating its customers for a year now. Facebook already showed how they treat you by the way they delete accounts: they have complete control and you have none.

Deal with it! Me? I dealt with it by putting all my photos into the public domain when I upload them to Flickr.

I dealt with it by having Fast Company own its own servers and content. It’s a real pain, too, takes me a lot longer to upload my videos to FastCompany.tv than it does to upload them to TubeMogul. But then we have control and we know when ads will be put on top of our content, etc.

So, relax, have fun, just realize you’re here to serve Facebook, not necessarily the other way around.

UPDATE: There’s an interesting conversation going on about this over on friendfeed, including links to a comparison of several TOS’s of several user generated content sites.

Did Adobe snub Apple with FlashPlayer 10, Palm Pre, and Development Fund announcements?

Just now Adobe announced lots of mobile phone news. More on that in a second. But what wasn’t announced?

No iPhone support for Flash yet.

What else was announced? FlashPlayer 10 will ship on the Palm Pre. I was briefed on the rest of this stuff last week and they were holding out on this news.

Now THAT is the way to poke Steve Jobs and crew in the eye. Apple has famously not put Flash on the iPhone, which keeps a lot of Web experiences from working.

There’s a TON of news, though, including a $10 million development fund. Here’s what the PR folks sent me from Adobe — I will be updating this post all night long with more news, so come back frequently and often.

UPDATE: Tons of other blogs are writing about this:
Venture Beat: Mobile Flash apps get better distribution, more money.

Press Release from Adobe: Adobe Announces New eBook and PDF Support for Mobile Devices.

Press Release from Adobe: Palm Latest Mobile Industry Leader to Join Open Screen Project.

Press Release from Adobe: Adobe Announces New Flash Lite Distributable Player.

More news on TechMeme (funny how other blogs totally missed the Palm Pre news).

Flash Player 10 for Smartphones
• Browser plug-in for smartphone-class devices with full desktop web compatibility and access to rich applications, interactive content and web videos.
• First operating systems expected to be supported: Android, Windows Mobile, and Nokia S60/Symbian.
• Flash Player 10 for Smartphones expected to be avail to OEMs: End of 2009; Devices expected in market: 2010

Flash Lite Momentum
• According to Strategy Analytics (Jan ‘09 Report), more than 1 billion devices shipped with Flash Lite by the end of Q1 ’09 – one year ahead of schedule. Additional 1.5 billion expected to ship within next 2 years.
• According to Strategy Analytics (Jan ‘09 Report), close to 40% of all new mobile phones and devices worldwide shipped with Flash Lite in ‘08. Also, Flash Lite shipments experienced a 100% year-over-year growth.

New Flash Lite Distributable Player
• Adobe Flash Lite Distributable Player is a new, over-the-air mobile runtime based on Flash Lite 3.1. Enables developers and content providers to create and directly distribute mobile apps.
• Player is automatically installed and updated as apps are downloaded. (WiMo and Nokia S60 first OSs to be supported)
• First step for direct distribution of mobile player; similar to the distribution of Flash Player on the desktop. Distributable Player launches as a beta in the U.S., Spain, Italy and India, and is supported by dozens of content aggregators and developers. (see separate quote sheet)
• Player is part of a larger solution for developers that includes Flash CS4, Device Central CS4 and a mobile packager.

Open Screen Project Fund
• Nokia and Adobe launch $10 million Open Screen Project Fund designed to help developers create apps and services for mobile phones, desktop and CE devices using Flash and AIR. The fund is an open fund with additional OSP partners expected to join.
• Funds are available immediately. (direct grant funding, no VC involvement) Developers are invited to submit concepts for apps that will be reviewed for how innovative the user experience and how robust the app is, and how well it exploits Flash and AIR capabilities. Developers retain all rights to their apps.

New Reader Mobile SDK
• New software development kit to enable OEMs to deliver mobile devices that can download, manage and display PDF content and eBooks. Supports reflowable PDF technology, Adobe content protection technology, and EPUB file format. Replaces Reader LE 2.5.
• Available today. Companies that announced plans to ship devices and apps in 2009 that integrate the technology include Bookeen, iRex Technologies, Lexcycle, Plastic Logic, Polymer Vision, Springs Designs and others. Sony already integrates the engine in the Sony Reader today.

Doing comments first on Twitter with Twickie

OK, so, what is the tool I was using earlier in the evening to get lots of responses from my Twitter followers and copy and paste them into my blog? Chris Pirillo’s Twickie.

How does it work?

I ask a question on Twitter.

People respond.

I log into Twickie. It lets me see the tweets I’ve posted. I click on a down arrow to see all responses.

I copy the HTML out of Twickie and I paste it into my blog editor’s HTML mode.

Real easy. Free. And demonstrates how you can use a crowd to do research.

Earlier tonight Chris told me it lets him write blog posts “backward.” See in the old world we’d write our opinions, then you’d comment. In Pirillo’s world you comment first, then he writes his blog post.

It’s a weird world and it’s Friday night, so I went with it and was amazed at the responses I got in just a few short minutes.

Thank you for participating. I’ll try other questions soon, I don’t want to overdo it.

Facebook passes 175 million users

Is it just me or is Facebook’s growth speeding up?

Dave Morin, who runs Facebook’s application platform team, tonight announced on Twitter/friendfeed that Facebook had passed 175 million users.

Congrats. I told a few people at Davos that Facebook would be THE story of the year in Silicon Valley. Twitter is trying to make it interesting, but Facebook really is far far ahead.

What's the best new productivity tool you've adopted in past year?

Here’s another Twitter test. I just asked my Twitter followers this question: What is the best new productivity tool you’ve adopted in the past year?

Within a couple of minutes TONS of answers came in. Here’s the results:

terrysimpson: Filofax
about 15 minutes ago
angellr: iPhone
about 15 minutes ago
photar: masturbation abstinance.
about 15 minutes ago
gadgetboy: My LIvescribe Pulse Smartpen! http://livescribe.com
about 15 minutes ago
mclaughj: Things for Mac
about 15 minutes ago
juliejulie: tweetdeck.
about 15 minutes ago
LemursManLemurs: Ubiquity.
about 15 minutes ago
TTIK: my car LOL
about 15 minutes ago
sellinggiants: smartphone
about 14 minutes ago
texaszman: GrandCentral by Google. By far.
about 14 minutes ago
sistaklein: either yammer or timebridge
about 14 minutes ago
charlieray: my acer aspire one
about 14 minutes ago
goaliemom31: TWEETDECK!
about 14 minutes ago
limyh: remember the milk. great GTD app, for personal productivity.
about 14 minutes ago
bicoastalite: I don&#39t have an answer! Just wanted to be part of your test!!
about 14 minutes ago
Bryceforvice: Squarespace
about 14 minutes ago
djpappas: Evernote – although I don&#39t use it enough.
about 14 minutes ago
JoeAndrieu: GoToMeeting. Hands down.
about 14 minutes ago
smashadv: this is a test of @scobleizer&#39s twitter tool without using any keywords from the question asked.
about 13 minutes ago
jaybarcelo: Re: Test new Twitter Tool
about 13 minutes ago
starobin: Best recent productivity tool – Evernote. With a close second to Dropbox.
about 13 minutes ago
fantomaster: MS OneNote.
about 13 minutes ago
dimensionmedia: does Freshbooks count? It&#39s made me productive in my invoices and getting payments.
about 13 minutes ago
PeterOA: Chandler
about 13 minutes ago
madpod: what are you using to paste replies?
about 13 minutes ago
aphexddb: notepad.exe
about 13 minutes ago
marcumeno: iphone for personal productivity; taking msft connector bus for work
about 13 minutes ago
Djalfy: does sleep count (Am an insomniac) and well yea its important to think with a clear mind
about 12 minutes ago
jdudley: without a doubt, “Things” for Mac is my top productivity took
about 12 minutes ago
oscarte: TweetDeck; no, kidding. For real; just a simple dashboard stickie to be always in the desktop and above all open windows
about 12 minutes ago
imusicmash: my Twitter All Bios at a Glance Greasemonkey script makes me more productive with Twitter. Check it out: http://bit.ly/oYwm
about 12 minutes ago
duilen: I think I started using Firebug early last year. It has easily saved me hundreds of hours. Much better than developers toolbar.
about 12 minutes ago
Smartalyx: Had to GMAIL checking all my other accounts and using IMAP to check GMAIL.
about 12 minutes ago
aaroneaton: A notebook and pen. Never runs out of batteries and is always synced!
about 12 minutes ago
mgasper42: As a newby on twitter its interesting to see other opinions on the greatest feature of twitter for others. Thanks for the tweet
about 12 minutes ago
Mosso: TweetDeck
about 11 minutes ago
katetribe: Having all newsletters, membership, and event emails going to a separate email address that I can check in sessions.
about 11 minutes ago
davehollis: a file cabinet.
about 11 minutes ago
adryenn: Plaxo! Syncs PC to internet, then to Mac, then to Blackberry. Google takes care of sharing so I always know where to be.
about 11 minutes ago
edelatorre: evernote
about 11 minutes ago

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ajadoniz: google calendar sync, ubiquity
about 11 minutes ago
KevinCTofel: : second monitor in the home office.
about 11 minutes ago
GLENNatMHz: No question about it. . Pwnage Tool.
about 10 minutes ago
brandon_wirtz: Twitter! This guy trapped me on a bus, sang its praises, and 14 hours later I was Networking like a MoFo.
about 10 minutes ago
AuctionDirect: tie… a third monitor and ping.fm
about 10 minutes ago
mattbramanti: A stack of index cards and GTD.
about 10 minutes ago
evebutterflies: Xobni but KallOut comes in a close second
about 9 minutes ago
FreeRangeMom: believe it or not, starting to use Outlook calendar and task list was my best productivity tool (yes I&#39m slow to adopt)
about 9 minutes ago
santibarguen: The best tool I have used for a couple of weeks know is Twibeo. It lets you share photos, videos and more in twitter format.
about 9 minutes ago
Mossappeal: freshbooks
about 9 minutes ago
Schwa09: iPhone….no contest
about 8 minutes ago
lalitr: Anti-productivity tool, yet most new world opening : twitter. Best new productivity tool: Balanced Chart by Academic Writing Clb
about 8 minutes ago
ryancordell: Things by Cultured Code
about 8 minutes ago
marigo: yoga. yes, yoga is an amazing productivity tool (but nothing surpasses the good old Blackberry!)
about 8 minutes ago
mpinheir: Rememberthemilk.com
about 7 minutes ago
BasilLeaf: simpleGTD
about 7 minutes ago
soverland: Would be Remember the Milk for me…
about 7 minutes ago
dannyrobinson: #Things . Changed my life.
about 5 minutes ago
sixstringsnc: TweetDeck. Though it can eat time, I&#39ve learned more in 4 months about my craft & had eyes opened more than in past 4 years.
about 5 minutes ago
voppa: Best productivity tool? It&#39s an analog solution-A notepad on my desk. My productivity mantra has become “Make it intuitive!”
about 4 minutes ago
NinjaInDesign: the iPhone
about 4 minutes ago
myflatworld: Evernote
about 3 minutes ago
brettdusek: Microsoft Project
about 3 minutes ago
coquidesign: evernote is the best productivity tool for me! Love how iPhone and computer link with it.
about 3 minutes ago
techtweetr: Evernote
about 2 minutes ago
chimoose: a moleskine notebook
about 2 minutes ago
rgoodwin: a trash bin and a liberal sense of detachment from unnecessary objects.
59 seconds ago
dane: my best new productivity tool, the ScanSnap S510, finally reasonably paperless. Fast double side scanning to PDF, OCR indexing.
58 seconds ago
mirven: Things, without a doubt
56 seconds ago
texasgirltrix: What do you mean reply to this message on Twitter? Aren&#39t we on Twitter?? OMG……………..
36 seconds ago

iv>