Erased

OK, forget for a few minutes the debate about who owns your email addresses, birthdays, and name on social networking sites.

Forget for a few minutes about whether or not I was a jerk, stupid, idiotic, or worse for breaking the terms of service of one of your favorite companies.

Forget for a few minutes about whether it’s right or not that I got my account turned back on.

But after reading thousands of blog posts, comments, Twitter messages, and talking with tons of people one thing is still really freaking me out:

I was erased.

Erased so quickly and completely that my friends had no idea what happened.

And not only was I erased, but anyone who wrote on my wall’s data was erased too.

My photos were erased.

My videos were erased.

AND all of YOUR data associated with those were erased.

Rodney Rumford has the picture of erasure.

Now, keep in mind, this isn’t a video game. It isn’t a review site. Or a restaurant site.

It’s something that claims to be a “utility.”

I’ve gotten dozens of messages from people who claim to have been erased by Facebook who DID NOT run a script (or so they say). They were just erased for some perceived slight and because they aren’t a famous blogger they haven’t gotten their accounts turned back on.

So, this is a company you want to trust your private details to? A company that can not just block access to your account, but can erase every last detail about you.

And you’re wondering what I’m doing trying to get your email address and birthday out of this system?

Personally, can you put my email, phone, birthday into some other system so that you know how to get ahold of me after I get erased the next time? Thanks! It’s always on my blog.

And people wonder why I love the open public Web…

OK, now we can get back to calling me an idiot, or arguing whether or not you, by adding me to your friends or follower lists, gave me permission to add your email address to other systems I use, and whether or not I should have been allowed back into Facebook. All that doesn’t bother me as much as just realizing that a company can totally wipe you off the face of their walled garden without any due process or any real recourse.

Not that I’ve learned my lesson. Right now I’m typing this from an Apple store computer in San Francisco and I’ve put 89 videos up on Qik (which just improved its quality) and who knows whether or not my videos will get erased in the future from that service?

Call me a sucker for letting other companies control my data. But, probably, so are you. Welcome to the world where you don’t really own your data.

Hope you never get erased.

Comments

  1. Same thing happened to me when I was removed from weblogs.asp.net (prior to starting Geekswithblogs.net). I had 6 or so months of blog posts erased without any notice. Really sucks and I totally understand where you are coming from.

  2. Same thing happened to me when I was removed from weblogs.asp.net (prior to starting Geekswithblogs.net). I had 6 or so months of blog posts erased without any notice. Really sucks and I totally understand where you are coming from.

  3. I actually wrote about this issue in my first scoble post yesterday – the one where i wondered why you were banned.

    it is a bit scary

    course at the same time, it’s a bit scary that someone can take PII out of a social network and do as they please with it.

    i hope we can split the conversation at some point – both pieces are separate conversations.

  4. I actually wrote about this issue in my first scoble post yesterday – the one where i wondered why you were banned.

    it is a bit scary

    course at the same time, it’s a bit scary that someone can take PII out of a social network and do as they please with it.

    i hope we can split the conversation at some point – both pieces are separate conversations.

  5. Honestly, I will simply never become that Dependant on another firm to managed my stuff. I refuse. Now, obviously I have more resources than most (a co-lo server of my own, programming skills and good sysadmin chops) but the fact remains.

    In short, I simply won’t put anyone in that kind of power.

    * When I use Gmail to host me, I use Pop3 mode to have a copy. I will not leave my email up to google to erase.

    * I have backups of all my flickr pictures.

    * I ALWAYS point people at my domain as primary contact, and for the most part I mirror locally any RSS feeds I care for them to have.

    * I host my own blogs.

    In short, flickr may erase me … twitter may try and kill me… but my content stays with me.

    Ken

    * I will never host my blog on someone elses hardware

  6. Why… I didn’t really see this one coming. Hopefully they will resolve this issue and restore your account. Perhaps this was an oversight… or an effort to bite back at you.

    Either way, it makes Facebook really look like the bad guy now.

  7. Honestly, I will simply never become that Dependant on another firm to managed my stuff. I refuse. Now, obviously I have more resources than most (a co-lo server of my own, programming skills and good sysadmin chops) but the fact remains.

    In short, I simply won’t put anyone in that kind of power.

    * When I use Gmail to host me, I use Pop3 mode to have a copy. I will not leave my email up to google to erase.

    * I have backups of all my flickr pictures.

    * I ALWAYS point people at my domain as primary contact, and for the most part I mirror locally any RSS feeds I care for them to have.

    * I host my own blogs.

    In short, flickr may erase me … twitter may try and kill me… but my content stays with me.

    Ken

    * I will never host my blog on someone elses hardware

  8. Why… I didn’t really see this one coming. Hopefully they will resolve this issue and restore your account. Perhaps this was an oversight… or an effort to bite back at you.

    Either way, it makes Facebook really look like the bad guy now.

  9. Facebook has Erased Scoble…

    Scoble has been erased from Facebook… just one day after the Plaxo script debacle. Scoble expressed his concern yesterday via live video feed on Mogulus as to his account being unsuspended after being banned for running a script that took some so…

  10. I have a few friends, who, just for using a nickname, have been banned from Facebook. It’s getting old and I no longer have sympathy for Facebook.

  11. I have a few friends, who, just for using a nickname, have been banned from Facebook. It’s getting old and I no longer have sympathy for Facebook.

  12. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  13. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  14. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  15. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  16. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  17. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  18. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  19. Though I can understand you being upset Robert – your stuff disappeared like a fart in the breeze, it seems to me that your indignation is naive. This suprises me a bit. Nothing that claims to be free and unfettered is in fact free or unfettered. You keep talking about YOUR data when speaking about your Facebook fiasco. Forgive me for being ignorant or dismissive, but what exactly does that mean? I mean, the nanosecond you signed up with Facebook, you gave away your rights to “your” data. In fact, the data you entered and otherwise accreted, was THEIR data from the moment you began using Facebook. They can do with it what they please. Maybe you thought that for free you can call information stored on someone else’s servers “yours” but you were really wrong. I think that if you had paid a service fee to have Facebook store data in the manner you so chose and contracted them to do, you could have a case for being indignant and a case for demanding recourse. The truth is, that is not the case. Facebook and the other so called “Free” social networking experiments are NOT really FREE at all. What you give up in order to communicate and socialie is what you put in – “your” data.

  20. I have always backed up my own data. I still have all my code from college. It may be on punch cards and it may the over 30 years old but I have it. If I care about it I have a local backup. It just makes sense.

  21. If it’s so important that you not be erased, follow the rules.

    You like having running water, so you pay your water bill. Same thing. You want the goods/services? Follow the rules. Don’t like the rules? Go elsewhere.

    It’s really that simple.

  22. I have always backed up my own data. I still have all my code from college. It may be on punch cards and it may the over 30 years old but I have it. If I care about it I have a local backup. It just makes sense.

  23. If it’s so important that you not be erased, follow the rules.

    You like having running water, so you pay your water bill. Same thing. You want the goods/services? Follow the rules. Don’t like the rules? Go elsewhere.

    It’s really that simple.

  24. So Facebook is the bad guy here because they don’t promise to keep people’s data forever regardless of how users treat their FREE site? Come on, Robert… you’re NOT an idiot, but neither are the folks at Facebook. In terms of fear over lost data, if Facebook goes away tomorrow I’m not going to cry about the loss of my data because I know better than to keep my most valuable data on a free site over which I have no control. I’m sorry your account was gone for two seconds -I’m sure it sucked, but give those guys a break already.

  25. So Facebook is the bad guy here because they don’t promise to keep people’s data forever regardless of how users treat their FREE site? Come on, Robert… you’re NOT an idiot, but neither are the folks at Facebook. In terms of fear over lost data, if Facebook goes away tomorrow I’m not going to cry about the loss of my data because I know better than to keep my most valuable data on a free site over which I have no control. I’m sorry your account was gone for two seconds -I’m sure it sucked, but give those guys a break already.

  26. Cool! Your birthday is on your blog too. My first thought was, “Yeah Right”, but ok. I just hope your bank knows not to ask for it to confirm who you are.

  27. Cool! Your birthday is on your blog too. My first thought was, “Yeah Right”, but ok. I just hope your bank knows not to ask for it to confirm who you are.

  28. When we choose to live our lives as a series of 1s and 0s, we can always be erased. Even when having your own machines you can still go away. Viruses, Lightening strikes, and bad hard drives have all caused me to loose a ‘bit’ of myself.

    The real question is “who’s data is it?” One might enter it, but its on another’s computer/network/etc. and can you trust them?

    I’m glad you back, but when you deal with a large institution who is looking out for their own interest…big brother isn’t just the government anymore.

  29. When we choose to live our lives as a series of 1s and 0s, we can always be erased. Even when having your own machines you can still go away. Viruses, Lightening strikes, and bad hard drives have all caused me to loose a ‘bit’ of myself.

    The real question is “who’s data is it?” One might enter it, but its on another’s computer/network/etc. and can you trust them?

    I’m glad you back, but when you deal with a large institution who is looking out for their own interest…big brother isn’t just the government anymore.

  30. I’ve been following your saga….. truly frightening that something like this can happen. Poof! Gone.

    Glad you’re back in the saddle again.

  31. I’ve been following your saga….. truly frightening that something like this can happen. Poof! Gone.

    Glad you’re back in the saddle again.

  32. I don’t think you have to stand for not owning your own data, or at least having the right to move it. If a service doesn’t allow for some way to move your own data between providers, don’t use them.

  33. I don’t think you have to stand for not owning your own data, or at least having the right to move it. If a service doesn’t allow for some way to move your own data between providers, don’t use them.

  34. Alfred and Catherine,

    I agree backing up is important, but that is easier said than done. Actually what Robert was trying to do was make a back-up.

    Facebook is not the bad guy, but they could do better, and Scoble is trying to point them in the right direction. But, sometimes you have to talk a little louder to be heard.

  35. Alfred and Catherine,

    I agree backing up is important, but that is easier said than done. Actually what Robert was trying to do was make a back-up.

    Facebook is not the bad guy, but they could do better, and Scoble is trying to point them in the right direction. But, sometimes you have to talk a little louder to be heard.

  36. glad you’re back up but this is shocking to say the least! Why do we still keep providing these companies so much of our personal info? 89 videos? hope you kept a backup! :)

  37. glad you’re back up but this is shocking to say the least! Why do we still keep providing these companies so much of our personal info? 89 videos? hope you kept a backup! :)

  38. First off, I seriously doubt you went into all this not thinking about all the mileage you were going to be able to get out of it, regardless of getting nabbed. But that’s okay. I don’t have any negative feelings if you knew you’d be able to have $h1tloads of press/links written about the “experiment”. In fact, I applaud you for doing it, knowing that you are smart enough to have figured out the various potential results.

    Plus, you’re getting ready to announce “your next move” in terms of moving your career from podtech to Scoble 2.0 (2.5?, 3.0?). Does anyone truly imagine this is “hurting” you? Come on people.

    But to the bigger point: FB is what it is. If you want to be more in control of your social network, you need to be following DiSo or APML or the likes. You need to have an OpenID.

    What we are experiencing right now is nothing like what we’ll experience online in 5 or 10 years. NOTHING.

    And if you were able to get yourself all riled up over the “shenanigans” that RS just perpetrated, I ask you this: do you have a safeway, ralphs, frys, or any other grocery store “member” card? If you do, and you use it regularly, your the fool! Why, because they know more about you than you know about you. They know more about what you do than you probably realize. And you can’t get at that information. You can’t pull it out of their systems.

    But you all keep harping on the tragedy that has occurred here. Amazing!

  39. First off, I seriously doubt you went into all this not thinking about all the mileage you were going to be able to get out of it, regardless of getting nabbed. But that’s okay. I don’t have any negative feelings if you knew you’d be able to have $h1tloads of press/links written about the “experiment”. In fact, I applaud you for doing it, knowing that you are smart enough to have figured out the various potential results.

    Plus, you’re getting ready to announce “your next move” in terms of moving your career from podtech to Scoble 2.0 (2.5?, 3.0?). Does anyone truly imagine this is “hurting” you? Come on people.

    But to the bigger point: FB is what it is. If you want to be more in control of your social network, you need to be following DiSo or APML or the likes. You need to have an OpenID.

    What we are experiencing right now is nothing like what we’ll experience online in 5 or 10 years. NOTHING.

    And if you were able to get yourself all riled up over the “shenanigans” that RS just perpetrated, I ask you this: do you have a safeway, ralphs, frys, or any other grocery store “member” card? If you do, and you use it regularly, your the fool! Why, because they know more about you than you know about you. They know more about what you do than you probably realize. And you can’t get at that information. You can’t pull it out of their systems.

    But you all keep harping on the tragedy that has occurred here. Amazing!

  40. Robert, several months ago you were criticized for producing content that you would share only on Facebook. You defended the move to publish content that was not open to all.

    Today, the service you produced content for showed you how quickly it can make you disappear.

    Perhaps this is a lesson to control your own content. This blog, if hosted on your own server, would be open to anyone and all your content would be under your control.

    I’ve not yet understood why folks clamor to place their content on other people’s servers.

    Lesson learned?

  41. Robert, several months ago you were criticized for producing content that you would share only on Facebook. You defended the move to publish content that was not open to all.

    Today, the service you produced content for showed you how quickly it can make you disappear.

    Perhaps this is a lesson to control your own content. This blog, if hosted on your own server, would be open to anyone and all your content would be under your control.

    I’ve not yet understood why folks clamor to place their content on other people’s servers.

    Lesson learned?

  42. I worry about you and your family. Do you ever have time for either? These matters you concern yourself with are so trivial. What “data” of yours that is of any actual value is on Facebook anyway? A bunch of meaningless wall posts and status updates?

    Seriously, do you really rely on them to keep track of anybody who is truly meaningful in your life?

    I think you need a job and a life.

  43. I worry about you and your family. Do you ever have time for either? These matters you concern yourself with are so trivial. What “data” of yours that is of any actual value is on Facebook anyway? A bunch of meaningless wall posts and status updates?

    Seriously, do you really rely on them to keep track of anybody who is truly meaningful in your life?

    I think you need a job and a life.

  44. The scary thing, James, is that companies aren’t even scratching the surface of unlocking the potential of what they could do with the existing technology they have in their data centers right now with those cute little grocery cards. Separately –thanks to your post I discovered your blog and love it, so excuse me while I add your RSS, twitter feed, etc. to my sites….

  45. The scary thing, James, is that companies aren’t even scratching the surface of unlocking the potential of what they could do with the existing technology they have in their data centers right now with those cute little grocery cards. Separately –thanks to your post I discovered your blog and love it, so excuse me while I add your RSS, twitter feed, etc. to my sites….

  46. I learned early on in the internet age that you can’t trust websites to keep your data safe.

    Just one example is Usa.net. all of a sudden and without warning required payment for emails. Sucks if you used them for email.

    I truly believe there is nothing that will prevent a company from deciding what they want to do with your data and you have no choice but to go along with it. Facebook might decide to charge for access tomorrow, either pay or lose your data. They reserve the rights in their TOS to do it. Companies have done it in the past and they will do it in the future.

  47. I learned early on in the internet age that you can’t trust websites to keep your data safe.

    Just one example is Usa.net. all of a sudden and without warning required payment for emails. Sucks if you used them for email.

    I truly believe there is nothing that will prevent a company from deciding what they want to do with your data and you have no choice but to go along with it. Facebook might decide to charge for access tomorrow, either pay or lose your data. They reserve the rights in their TOS to do it. Companies have done it in the past and they will do it in the future.

  48. Unperson is a person who has been “vaporized”; who has been not only killed by the state, but effectively erased from existence. Such a person would be written out of existing books, photographs, and articles so that no trace of their existence could be found in the historical record. The idea is that such a person would, according to the principles of doublethink, be forgotten completely (for it would be impossible to provide evidence of their existence), even by close friends and family members, and mentioning his/her name, or even mentioning of their past existence, is thoughtcrime. (The concept that the person may have existed at one time, and has disappeared, cannot be expressed in Newspeak.) Compare to the Stalinist practice of erasing people from photographs after their death.

    from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Newspeak_words

  49. Unperson is a person who has been “vaporized”; who has been not only killed by the state, but effectively erased from existence. Such a person would be written out of existing books, photographs, and articles so that no trace of their existence could be found in the historical record. The idea is that such a person would, according to the principles of doublethink, be forgotten completely (for it would be impossible to provide evidence of their existence), even by close friends and family members, and mentioning his/her name, or even mentioning of their past existence, is thoughtcrime. (The concept that the person may have existed at one time, and has disappeared, cannot be expressed in Newspeak.) Compare to the Stalinist practice of erasing people from photographs after their death.

    from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Newspeak_words

  50. Although it may happen, I cannot imagine being “erased” from something like gmail. If a service I rely on has me thinking about this sort of disruption as well as aspects of potential “identity theft”, I need to really think about why I would want to be associated with them?…being “free” certainly isn’t the reason.

    Unlike my gmail account, I do have very little invested in facebook and ironically I just started exploring it over the holidays so it was pretty easy for me to request that my account be disabled and in requesting this I also asked that I be “erased”. I am curious to follow what others with more invested in facebook are thinking.

    – scott -

  51. Although it may happen, I cannot imagine being “erased” from something like gmail. If a service I rely on has me thinking about this sort of disruption as well as aspects of potential “identity theft”, I need to really think about why I would want to be associated with them?…being “free” certainly isn’t the reason.

    Unlike my gmail account, I do have very little invested in facebook and ironically I just started exploring it over the holidays so it was pretty easy for me to request that my account be disabled and in requesting this I also asked that I be “erased”. I am curious to follow what others with more invested in facebook are thinking.

    – scott -

  52. That’s why I like services that offer the ability to host the service yourself. WordPress is great, and it’s awesome because of the fact that you can host your content yourself. While I like a service like Flickr, I use Gallery because I host the data myself. Sure with video it could get a bit expensive, but maybe video services should offer the ability to download a copy for your own records. Now there’s a business model!

  53. Dude, ever heard the phrase “you get what you pay for.”? Exactly what did they owe you…for FREE? Seriously. You would have a case if you were paying them for this service, but you didn’t invest anything but your time, AT YOUR OWN CHOOSING.

    You obviously have not read Facebook’s Terms of Use. Or if you did, you didn’t understand it. They are very clear. For example:

    “The Company may terminate your membership, delete your profile and any content or information that you have posted on the Site or through any Platform Application and/or prohibit you from using or accessing the Service or the Site or any Platform Application (or any portion, aspect or feature of the Service or the Site or any Platform Application) for any reason, or no reason, at any time in its sole discretion, with or without notice…,”

    and

    “IN NO EVENT WILL COMPANY OR ITS DIRECTORS, EMPLOYEES OR AGENTS BE LIABLE TO YOU OR ANY THIRD PERSON FOR ANY INDIRECT, CONSEQUENTIAL, EXEMPLARY, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES, INCLUDING FOR ANY LOST PROFITS OR LOST DATA ARISING FROM YOUR USE OF THE SITE OR THE SERVICE, ANY PLATFORM APPLICATIONS OR ANY OF THE SITE CONTENT OR OTHER MATERIALS ON, ACCESSED THROUGH OR DOWNLOADED FROM THE SITE, EVEN IF THE COMPANY IS AWARE OR HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. NOTWITHSTANDING ANYTHING TO THE CONTRARY CONTAINED HEREIN, THE COMPANY’S LIABILITY TO YOU FOR ANY CAUSE WHATSOEVER, AND REGARDLESS OF THE FORM OF THE ACTION, WILL AT ALL TIMES BE LIMITED TO THE AMOUNT PAID, IF ANY, BY YOU TO COMPANY FOR THE SERVICE DURING THE TERM OF MEMBERSHIP, BUT IN NO CASE WILL THE COMPANY’S LIABILITY TO YOU EXCEED $1000. YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT IF NO FEES ARE PAID TO COMPANY FOR THE SERVICE, YOU SHALL BE LIMITED TO INJUNCTIVE RELIEF ONLY, UNLESS OTHERWISE PERMITTED BY LAW, AND SHALL NOT BE ENTITLED TO DAMAGES OF ANY KIND FROM COMPANY, REGARDLESS OF THE CAUSE OF ACTION.”

    You agreed to all of the above when you created an account. If you had data on Facebook you wanted to retain, it was YOUR responsibility to make sure that happened; not Facebook’s. So, you have little room to bitch. The lesson you should now have learned is READ the contract before you agree to it.

  54. Dude, ever heard the phrase “you get what you pay for.”? Exactly what did they owe you…for FREE? Seriously. You would have a case if you were paying them for this service, but you didn’t invest anything but your time, AT YOUR OWN CHOOSING.

    You obviously have not read Facebook’s Terms of Use. Or if you did, you didn’t understand it. They are very clear. For example:

    “The Company may terminate your membership, delete your profile and any content or information that you have posted on the Site or through any Platform Application and/or prohibit you from using or accessing the Service or the Site or any Platform Application (or any portion, aspect or feature of the Service or the Site or any Platform Application) for any reason, or no reason, at any time in its sole discretion, with or without notice…,”

    and

    “IN NO EVENT WILL COMPANY OR ITS DIRECTORS, EMPLOYEES OR AGENTS BE LIABLE TO YOU OR ANY THIRD PERSON FOR ANY INDIRECT, CONSEQUENTIAL, EXEMPLARY, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES, INCLUDING FOR ANY LOST PROFITS OR LOST DATA ARISING FROM YOUR USE OF THE SITE OR THE SERVICE, ANY PLATFORM APPLICATIONS OR ANY OF THE SITE CONTENT OR OTHER MATERIALS ON, ACCESSED THROUGH OR DOWNLOADED FROM THE SITE, EVEN IF THE COMPANY IS AWARE OR HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. NOTWITHSTANDING ANYTHING TO THE CONTRARY CONTAINED HEREIN, THE COMPANY’S LIABILITY TO YOU FOR ANY CAUSE WHATSOEVER, AND REGARDLESS OF THE FORM OF THE ACTION, WILL AT ALL TIMES BE LIMITED TO THE AMOUNT PAID, IF ANY, BY YOU TO COMPANY FOR THE SERVICE DURING THE TERM OF MEMBERSHIP, BUT IN NO CASE WILL THE COMPANY’S LIABILITY TO YOU EXCEED $1000. YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT IF NO FEES ARE PAID TO COMPANY FOR THE SERVICE, YOU SHALL BE LIMITED TO INJUNCTIVE RELIEF ONLY, UNLESS OTHERWISE PERMITTED BY LAW, AND SHALL NOT BE ENTITLED TO DAMAGES OF ANY KIND FROM COMPANY, REGARDLESS OF THE CAUSE OF ACTION.”

    You agreed to all of the above when you created an account. If you had data on Facebook you wanted to retain, it was YOUR responsibility to make sure that happened; not Facebook’s. So, you have little room to bitch. The lesson you should now have learned is READ the contract before you agree to it.

  55. That’s why I like services that offer the ability to host the service yourself. WordPress is great, and it’s awesome because of the fact that you can host your content yourself. While I like a service like Flickr, I use Gallery because I host the data myself. Sure with video it could get a bit expensive, but maybe video services should offer the ability to download a copy for your own records. Now there’s a business model!

  56. Were you erased or turned off? When they re-opened your account was it substantially as it had been before they blanked it out?

  57. Some people think I’m an asshat for blogging anonymously… but I think too many invest far too much and risk too much on-line.

    I know you’ve made a business out of your work on-line and that’s OK but for many the risks exceed the reward.

    Text can make as many “enemies” as it can “friends”… and neither of those roles actually map to a real world relationship. It’s all virtual and we’re all in a walled garden w.r.t. on-line words.

    Real people don’t obsess like a few of us do with these issues.

    You were not erased. You were “managed”. You signed up to be managed. IMHO.

  58. Some people think I’m an asshat for blogging anonymously… but I think too many invest far too much and risk too much on-line.

    I know you’ve made a business out of your work on-line and that’s OK but for many the risks exceed the reward.

    Text can make as many “enemies” as it can “friends”… and neither of those roles actually map to a real world relationship. It’s all virtual and we’re all in a walled garden w.r.t. on-line words.

    Real people don’t obsess like a few of us do with these issues.

    You were not erased. You were “managed”. You signed up to be managed. IMHO.

  59. They had a whole process that had to play out before that happened.

    So maybe the correct analogy is that the water utility (which gives you free water, which you come to depend upon) sees you using up “too much water,” whatever that is, and they instantly shut off your water supply.

    You have a head full of Pert suds and find yourself unable to rinse.

    Then, after suffering from dehydration, you get a nice letter from the Water Utility people saying that the amount of water you were using was consistent with a water leak. They will let you have the nice free water again, but advise you to bathe less frequently. ;-)

  60. They had a whole process that had to play out before that happened.

    So maybe the correct analogy is that the water utility (which gives you free water, which you come to depend upon) sees you using up “too much water,” whatever that is, and they instantly shut off your water supply.

    You have a head full of Pert suds and find yourself unable to rinse.

    Then, after suffering from dehydration, you get a nice letter from the Water Utility people saying that the amount of water you were using was consistent with a water leak. They will let you have the nice free water again, but advise you to bathe less frequently. ;-)

  61. you do not know me and I only occassionally acutally read your blog, although I have it in my feedreader and scan all of your headlines. I am a born again Christian so I suspect many of our views will be different. But, your post leaves me confused. You own your data. You always have and as near as I can tell always will, barring some amazing changes in the law. However, you have voluntarily elected to post your data on the web, a very public place. You have chosen to post your data on a location you do not control. You have agreed to the terms of this site and got caught, as I understand it, with your hand in the cookie jar. The punishment was more than you expected, but the punishment was in line with the rights of the site owner. Did you keep copies of your data anywhere? In other words, did you back-up? If not, shame on you. When you enter the web, you enter a world where the rules are different from the norm, but the rules appeared to be applied properly. You still own your data, you just lost the data on this particular storage location. So what? You did not get erased. You are still present and accounted for and you still own your data, you just do not have a copy of that data on this particular location. What is the big deal?

  62. you do not know me and I only occassionally acutally read your blog, although I have it in my feedreader and scan all of your headlines. I am a born again Christian so I suspect many of our views will be different. But, your post leaves me confused. You own your data. You always have and as near as I can tell always will, barring some amazing changes in the law. However, you have voluntarily elected to post your data on the web, a very public place. You have chosen to post your data on a location you do not control. You have agreed to the terms of this site and got caught, as I understand it, with your hand in the cookie jar. The punishment was more than you expected, but the punishment was in line with the rights of the site owner. Did you keep copies of your data anywhere? In other words, did you back-up? If not, shame on you. When you enter the web, you enter a world where the rules are different from the norm, but the rules appeared to be applied properly. You still own your data, you just lost the data on this particular storage location. So what? You did not get erased. You are still present and accounted for and you still own your data, you just do not have a copy of that data on this particular location. What is the big deal?

  63. Robert-

    I’m glad you’re back on Facebook (since you’re the only reason I joined).

    Best wishes for a great 2008!!

  64. Robert-

    I’m glad you’re back on Facebook (since you’re the only reason I joined).

    Best wishes for a great 2008!!

  65. You are totally right to be pissed. There are many social networking choices, and the convention has changed from begging to choosing. Just because Facebook, or Google, or whoever has a “free” service does NOT give them the right to act in irresponsible ways. What is responsible? Giving users the benefit of the doubt, and keeping them posted when they think you have crossed some invisible line.

  66. Hi Robert,
    About a year ago, I gave a presentation at WebJam here in Sydney, Australia about the need for an unIndustry organisation. Our industry organisations protect professionally developed content e.g. Interactive media companies, but there is no one protecting user generated content (or consumer generated media, or whatever the “in” phrase is now). Over the years I’ve had a few nasty experiences of waking up one morning and my community is gone – 404 errors, site taken down, admin got bored.

    I exhorted to a drunken crowd that if there is another economic/technology Bubble burst, this time it won’t be the Venture Capitalists that are hurt but US – if Flickr or YouTube gets turned off with no warning, that’s our memories, and lives. We need the CoC to be an agreement to give us warnings, and ability to back our content up within a reasonable timeframe. I was dressed as my Avatar – SilkCharm – at the time, in a pink wig and huge pink wings, so no-one paid me any attention. :P

    If you, Robert, do absolutely nothing else over the next year to 18 months but set up an unIndustry governance organisation with a code of conduct that has companies committing to protecting user’s content/profiles/friends you will have done enormous good for all of us who create content on hosted sites. But if I may give you a tip: while evangelising, don’t dress as a pink pixie, with wings. :)

    Thanks Nick Hodge for pointing this post out to me *huggles*

  67. Hi Robert,
    About a year ago, I gave a presentation at WebJam here in Sydney, Australia about the need for an unIndustry organisation. Our industry organisations protect professionally developed content e.g. Interactive media companies, but there is no one protecting user generated content (or consumer generated media, or whatever the “in” phrase is now). Over the years I’ve had a few nasty experiences of waking up one morning and my community is gone – 404 errors, site taken down, admin got bored.

    I exhorted to a drunken crowd that if there is another economic/technology Bubble burst, this time it won’t be the Venture Capitalists that are hurt but US – if Flickr or YouTube gets turned off with no warning, that’s our memories, and lives. We need the CoC to be an agreement to give us warnings, and ability to back our content up within a reasonable timeframe. I was dressed as my Avatar – SilkCharm – at the time, in a pink wig and huge pink wings, so no-one paid me any attention. :P

    If you, Robert, do absolutely nothing else over the next year to 18 months but set up an unIndustry governance organisation with a code of conduct that has companies committing to protecting user’s content/profiles/friends you will have done enormous good for all of us who create content on hosted sites. But if I may give you a tip: while evangelising, don’t dress as a pink pixie, with wings. :)

    Thanks Nick Hodge for pointing this post out to me *huggles*

  68. You are totally right to be pissed. There are many social networking choices, and the convention has changed from begging to choosing. Just because Facebook, or Google, or whoever has a “free” service does NOT give them the right to act in irresponsible ways. What is responsible? Giving users the benefit of the doubt, and keeping them posted when they think you have crossed some invisible line.

  69. Real people don’t obsess like a few of us do with these issues.

    You’re right. I checked with some “real people” and they all said “Yes, but what does any of this have to do with Britney?”

    You were not erased. You were “managed”.

    “This was not called execution. It was called retirement.”
    — opening crawl, Blade Runner

  70. Real people don’t obsess like a few of us do with these issues.

    You’re right. I checked with some “real people” and they all said “Yes, but what does any of this have to do with Britney?”

    You were not erased. You were “managed”.

    “This was not called execution. It was called retirement.”
    — opening crawl, Blade Runner

  71. @25:

    Reminder: FB makes it clear they don’t erase anything. Once they have it it is theirs and they keep it long after you are gone for whatever they wish to do with it. Go back and read that TOS again.

    Now, my guess is that after they delete an account they might eventually erase photos or other things that might take up space without having any value (to them).

    But who knows, a few years down the line potential employers might really like to see what you were up to while you were in college.

    Facebook could even, with a fair degree of certainty guarantee that those embarrassing pictures belonged to YOU! At least that is still true for college kids if they want to be on their school’s network.

    That’s why my FB ID (in addition to being hardly used) is fake. (I know, they claim they don’t allow that.)

    FB needs to decide who it wants to be when it grown up. They better hurry too, before they are stunted.

  72. @25:

    Reminder: FB makes it clear they don’t erase anything. Once they have it it is theirs and they keep it long after you are gone for whatever they wish to do with it. Go back and read that TOS again.

    Now, my guess is that after they delete an account they might eventually erase photos or other things that might take up space without having any value (to them).

    But who knows, a few years down the line potential employers might really like to see what you were up to while you were in college.

    Facebook could even, with a fair degree of certainty guarantee that those embarrassing pictures belonged to YOU! At least that is still true for college kids if they want to be on their school’s network.

    That’s why my FB ID (in addition to being hardly used) is fake. (I know, they claim they don’t allow that.)

    FB needs to decide who it wants to be when it grown up. They better hurry too, before they are stunted.

  73. Robert,

    Thanks for taking a hard stand on this. It is difficult to understand how a third-party company could believe they have more right to your friends’ data than you do. The walled gardens are beginning to strain under the stress.

  74. Robert,

    Thanks for taking a hard stand on this. It is difficult to understand how a third-party company could believe they have more right to your friends’ data than you do. The walled gardens are beginning to strain under the stress.

  75. The problem is that some people make information available only to friends. There is a social understanding that this information will stay on Facebook and be exposed only to certain people.

    I think people have a legitimate gripe about you taking that information, IF other people could have gotten access to it. You say people should own their own information, and I agree with that. But my birthday is MY information, not YOUR information.

    Robert, you’ve always looked at Facebook at a Rolodex. I like that analogy. Say you had an old-fashioned Rolodex. Yes, you can carry that with you anywhere you go. BUT if you take that Rolodex and make copies of everybody’s business card and make them available to anybody and everybody who wants them, then that’s a breach of the relationship. It’s a slam against trust and privacy.

    What I’ve missed in all of this (I haven’t been following it closely), is whether or not what you took would be accessible to anybody else but you. If it would be only you, then I don’t see a problem with it. But if it could be accessed by others, then you were wrong to do it, IMO.

    One more thing…you always have the attitude that you’re an open book and good for you. But not everybody is like you. We all have own comfort levels when it comes to privacy. (I bet 95% of women have a much lower threshold than you do.) You shouldn’t assume that nobody should be upset because you wouldn’t be.

    It’s like you’re “steal my content” argument. Fine for you, but not for everybody. Frankly, I think this tendency of yours to think that what’s good for you is good for everybody is the one fault that is going to keep getting you into trouble.

  76. The problem is that some people make information available only to friends. There is a social understanding that this information will stay on Facebook and be exposed only to certain people.

    I think people have a legitimate gripe about you taking that information, IF other people could have gotten access to it. You say people should own their own information, and I agree with that. But my birthday is MY information, not YOUR information.

    Robert, you’ve always looked at Facebook at a Rolodex. I like that analogy. Say you had an old-fashioned Rolodex. Yes, you can carry that with you anywhere you go. BUT if you take that Rolodex and make copies of everybody’s business card and make them available to anybody and everybody who wants them, then that’s a breach of the relationship. It’s a slam against trust and privacy.

    What I’ve missed in all of this (I haven’t been following it closely), is whether or not what you took would be accessible to anybody else but you. If it would be only you, then I don’t see a problem with it. But if it could be accessed by others, then you were wrong to do it, IMO.

    One more thing…you always have the attitude that you’re an open book and good for you. But not everybody is like you. We all have own comfort levels when it comes to privacy. (I bet 95% of women have a much lower threshold than you do.) You shouldn’t assume that nobody should be upset because you wouldn’t be.

    It’s like you’re “steal my content” argument. Fine for you, but not for everybody. Frankly, I think this tendency of yours to think that what’s good for you is good for everybody is the one fault that is going to keep getting you into trouble.

  77. btw, I had a PRIVATE ezboard a few years ago. I used it to talk to my cartoonists, scattered across the globe. We moved to something else and I told them that I wanted the account closed. It was something that I was actually paying for, so when I quit paying for it, I thought it would go away.

    I found out earlier this year, that EVERYthing was not only still there, but all the password stuff was totally gone. ANYbody could access ANY and ALL of this PRIVATE forum.

    I learned my lesson there. I don’t believe ANYthing is really private online.

  78. btw, I had a PRIVATE ezboard a few years ago. I used it to talk to my cartoonists, scattered across the globe. We moved to something else and I told them that I wanted the account closed. It was something that I was actually paying for, so when I quit paying for it, I thought it would go away.

    I found out earlier this year, that EVERYthing was not only still there, but all the password stuff was totally gone. ANYbody could access ANY and ALL of this PRIVATE forum.

    I learned my lesson there. I don’t believe ANYthing is really private online.

  79. Yesterday, Blogger/soldier Andrew Olmsted was killed in Iraq, ambushed.

    Perspective.

    And on the same day, over 13,000 children died of hunger. I mean, that not the death of 13,000 brown children is anywhere NEAR as important as a single, white, American blogger who happened to choose to go to a place that’s known for getting people blown up or anything. Far from it.

    I’ll see your self-righteousness and raise you. ;-)

    Ironically, this is what Andrew Olmsted put in his last blog post (which he arranged to be published AFTER his death):

    I do ask (not that I’m in a position to enforce this) that no one try to use my death to further their political purposes. I went to Iraq and did what I did for my reasons, not yours. My life isn’t a chit to be used to bludgeon people to silence on either side.

  80. Yesterday, Blogger/soldier Andrew Olmsted was killed in Iraq, ambushed.

    Perspective.

    And on the same day, over 13,000 children died of hunger. I mean, that not the death of 13,000 brown children is anywhere NEAR as important as a single, white, American blogger who happened to choose to go to a place that’s known for getting people blown up or anything. Far from it.

    I’ll see your self-righteousness and raise you. ;-)

    Ironically, this is what Andrew Olmsted put in his last blog post (which he arranged to be published AFTER his death):

    I do ask (not that I’m in a position to enforce this) that no one try to use my death to further their political purposes. I went to Iraq and did what I did for my reasons, not yours. My life isn’t a chit to be used to bludgeon people to silence on either side.

  81. ______________________________________________

    The same thing happens to Digg members, YouTube members, MySpace users, Free Blog hosting services,
    etc etc etc :-(

    To them you are just another user name among thousands.
    They do their jobs in a way that is the easiest way out for them, then leave at the end of the day

  82. ______________________________________________

    The same thing happens to Digg members, YouTube members, MySpace users, Free Blog hosting services,
    etc etc etc :-(

    To them you are just another user name among thousands.
    They do their jobs in a way that is the easiest way out for them, then leave at the end of the day

  83. “I once didn’t pay my water bill. They did not turn it off. They had a whole process that had to play out before that happened.”

    the utility analogy is weak, facebook is not an essential service and there is absolutely no need for regulation similar to the water/gas/power utilites.

  84. “I once didn’t pay my water bill. They did not turn it off. They had a whole process that had to play out before that happened.”

    the utility analogy is weak, facebook is not an essential service and there is absolutely no need for regulation similar to the water/gas/power utilites.

  85. The only reason I would call you a “sucker” (as you put it, not me) is that you spent months obssessed with FB, practically their biggest sales person (in tech circles) while your critics (and some friends too) warned of putting too much trust there (in more ways than your data), and also warned of just being, well so obssesssed by it all. Then “it” turned around and bit you in the butt. It’s almost tragically comical.

    I’m glad you spend so much time testing out these services so much so that we don’t have to, and here, you’ve proven how valuable you can be as a guinea pig. But I would have to agree with a few of the posters here. As someone who is tehcnically inclined, why don’t you host your own services? You can still test all this other stuff out, just don’t dump your whole life into one basket (and tell us that’s what we should do too). I actually started using FB more just because I wanted to follow some of the stuff you “refused” to share with us here (something like, “if you want to see what I said, go to my facebook wall or see my video on facebook, or check out this or that on my FB….” and then it was “follow me on twitter…” when I’d just prefer to read your blog (maybe hosted by you).

    What’s it going to be next week? “Follow me as I jump off the Golden Gate Bridge stream into the cold Pacific, tide going out…”

    (Forgive me, it was partly in jest, I do sort of feel your pain…)

  86. The only reason I would call you a “sucker” (as you put it, not me) is that you spent months obssessed with FB, practically their biggest sales person (in tech circles) while your critics (and some friends too) warned of putting too much trust there (in more ways than your data), and also warned of just being, well so obssesssed by it all. Then “it” turned around and bit you in the butt. It’s almost tragically comical.

    I’m glad you spend so much time testing out these services so much so that we don’t have to, and here, you’ve proven how valuable you can be as a guinea pig. But I would have to agree with a few of the posters here. As someone who is tehcnically inclined, why don’t you host your own services? You can still test all this other stuff out, just don’t dump your whole life into one basket (and tell us that’s what we should do too). I actually started using FB more just because I wanted to follow some of the stuff you “refused” to share with us here (something like, “if you want to see what I said, go to my facebook wall or see my video on facebook, or check out this or that on my FB….” and then it was “follow me on twitter…” when I’d just prefer to read your blog (maybe hosted by you).

    What’s it going to be next week? “Follow me as I jump off the Golden Gate Bridge stream into the cold Pacific, tide going out…”

    (Forgive me, it was partly in jest, I do sort of feel your pain…)

  87. Yeah Karim,

    I did not use or even think of using his death the sick way you just placed on my post.
    FSCK you.

    Scoble is a blogger and his post title said he was ERASED.

    erased.

    perspective.

  88. Yeah Karim,

    I did not use or even think of using his death the sick way you just placed on my post.
    FSCK you.

    Scoble is a blogger and his post title said he was ERASED.

    erased.

    perspective.

  89. Karim:

    What the hell?

    Mentioning Andrew Olmsted’s death was clearly a comparison of blogger-to-blogger tragedies. That you saw it as some attempt to stifle political debate . . . when there hasn’t been a damn thing said about the politics of war until you friggin’ bothered to bring it up.

    It was all about one blogger who lost some data temporarily, another lost his life permanently.

    You have some serious problems if the first thing that came to your head from the mentioning of the death of someone that the messenger was trying to stifle your dissent about a subject that wasn’t even being talked about. Total non sequitur. Get a grip and take your race-baiting to a comment section where it is on topic.

  90. Karim:

    What the hell?

    Mentioning Andrew Olmsted’s death was clearly a comparison of blogger-to-blogger tragedies. That you saw it as some attempt to stifle political debate . . . when there hasn’t been a damn thing said about the politics of war until you friggin’ bothered to bring it up.

    It was all about one blogger who lost some data temporarily, another lost his life permanently.

    You have some serious problems if the first thing that came to your head from the mentioning of the death of someone that the messenger was trying to stifle your dissent about a subject that wasn’t even being talked about. Total non sequitur. Get a grip and take your race-baiting to a comment section where it is on topic.

  91. Robert, you embrace and endorse third party services all the time. You’re blog is stored on WordPress.com rather than using the amazing WordPress software on your own hosted site. If you don’t host it, IMO, you don’t own it. You’re giving a lot of content to companies that may or may not have your best interest in mind.

    Facebook sucks. Your endorsement of it almost got me interested, but ultimately, I can’t except a social network owning my stuff when it’s just as easy to get a domain name, get hosting and keep control.

    I’m not 100% pure on my position because PodShow hosts my video files, but I have a contract with them and I value them as a partner…not just a company whose EULA I’ve agreed too.

    When I speak to kids in college. I tell them to register a domain and buy hosting and work to own their stuff. You should do the same thing. If you do, you’ll never get banned.

  92. Robert, you embrace and endorse third party services all the time. You’re blog is stored on WordPress.com rather than using the amazing WordPress software on your own hosted site. If you don’t host it, IMO, you don’t own it. You’re giving a lot of content to companies that may or may not have your best interest in mind.

    Facebook sucks. Your endorsement of it almost got me interested, but ultimately, I can’t except a social network owning my stuff when it’s just as easy to get a domain name, get hosting and keep control.

    I’m not 100% pure on my position because PodShow hosts my video files, but I have a contract with them and I value them as a partner…not just a company whose EULA I’ve agreed too.

    When I speak to kids in college. I tell them to register a domain and buy hosting and work to own their stuff. You should do the same thing. If you do, you’ll never get banned.

  93. Robert — could you arrange for about 50 pounds of me to be erased? And I definitely don’t want it back, so anyone can have it to use. I’m approaching that “DD” cup myself.

    Ever since the first time I heard John Perry Barlow speak in the mid-nineties, it was clear that the whole concept of privacy or IP ownership was doomed. Since I was involved in selling my photographic services, it really rocked my world. But he spun the story so simply, so logically and so inescapably that I couldn’t help but understand.

    It’s really fun to see how clearly all these issues seem to be, the younger you are. I guess as your eyes get worse with age you end up seeing more shades of grey.

    I know one thing. I’m going to put your name, phone number and birthday up on MY blog right now.

  94. Robert — could you arrange for about 50 pounds of me to be erased? And I definitely don’t want it back, so anyone can have it to use. I’m approaching that “DD” cup myself.

    Ever since the first time I heard John Perry Barlow speak in the mid-nineties, it was clear that the whole concept of privacy or IP ownership was doomed. Since I was involved in selling my photographic services, it really rocked my world. But he spun the story so simply, so logically and so inescapably that I couldn’t help but understand.

    It’s really fun to see how clearly all these issues seem to be, the younger you are. I guess as your eyes get worse with age you end up seeing more shades of grey.

    I know one thing. I’m going to put your name, phone number and birthday up on MY blog right now.

  95. Curmudgeon: there’s always something more serious in life to talk about than what I’m talking about. I hate people who come in here and use the more serious stories against me. If you want to talk about more serious stuff, why don’t you just blog it?

  96. Curmudgeon: there’s always something more serious in life to talk about than what I’m talking about. I hate people who come in here and use the more serious stories against me. If you want to talk about more serious stuff, why don’t you just blog it?

  97. Frank: I never considered working at Facebook and was never offered a job there and I never approached anyone about working there. So, why would this have anything to do with this?

  98. Frank: I never considered working at Facebook and was never offered a job there and I never approached anyone about working there. So, why would this have anything to do with this?

  99. Scoble, I find it funny that a person with your stated experience in this space is even making an issue out of this. Facebook, according to their TOS, is under no obligation to maintain your information for you. You agreed to that, whether read the TOS or not.

    @48. Actually their TOS makes it very clear they can pretty much do what they want with the service at any time they choose, and are under no obligation to inform you.

    @47 Re: Flickr. Have you actually read their Terms of Use? In there Yahoo makes it VERY CLEAR you are using the free service at your own risk, and they too can do pretty much whatever they want with the data and you agree to not hold them accountable and not be indemnified. So, if you are worried about your “memories”, don’t store them on a FREE service that is under no obligation to guarantee you data will always be available to you. I can pretty much bet 99.999% of Flickr users have not read the TOS and are not aware. Here’s the kicker:

    “Yahoo! reserves the right at any time and from time to time to modify or discontinue, temporarily or permanently, the Service (or any part thereof) with or without notice. You agree that Yahoo! shall not be liable to you or to any third party for any modification, suspension or discontinuance of the Service.”

    Note that is says “WITH OR WITHOUT NOTICE”. So, the minute you sign up for a Flickr account you agree to this. So, anyone that is relying on Flickr as their sole source for storing their photos is….well…a bit of a fool.

  100. Scoble, I find it funny that a person with your stated experience in this space is even making an issue out of this. Facebook, according to their TOS, is under no obligation to maintain your information for you. You agreed to that, whether read the TOS or not.

    @48. Actually their TOS makes it very clear they can pretty much do what they want with the service at any time they choose, and are under no obligation to inform you.

    @47 Re: Flickr. Have you actually read their Terms of Use? In there Yahoo makes it VERY CLEAR you are using the free service at your own risk, and they too can do pretty much whatever they want with the data and you agree to not hold them accountable and not be indemnified. So, if you are worried about your “memories”, don’t store them on a FREE service that is under no obligation to guarantee you data will always be available to you. I can pretty much bet 99.999% of Flickr users have not read the TOS and are not aware. Here’s the kicker:

    “Yahoo! reserves the right at any time and from time to time to modify or discontinue, temporarily or permanently, the Service (or any part thereof) with or without notice. You agree that Yahoo! shall not be liable to you or to any third party for any modification, suspension or discontinuance of the Service.”

    Note that is says “WITH OR WITHOUT NOTICE”. So, the minute you sign up for a Flickr account you agree to this. So, anyone that is relying on Flickr as their sole source for storing their photos is….well…a bit of a fool.

  101. Donald: the problem is that when Flickr deletes a photo, they delete more than just that person’s photo: they also delete MY comments with it. Yeah, you TRY to backup your comments! If they aren’t associated with the photo then they become worthless.

    Anyway, you’re right. The companies have total control of us here.

    Like I said: hope you don’t get deleted.

  102. Donald: the problem is that when Flickr deletes a photo, they delete more than just that person’s photo: they also delete MY comments with it. Yeah, you TRY to backup your comments! If they aren’t associated with the photo then they become worthless.

    Anyway, you’re right. The companies have total control of us here.

    Like I said: hope you don’t get deleted.

  103. @Donald Just because it’s in the ToS, EULA, or whatever, doesn’t make it right. The TOS needs to change then. The old EULA for MySpace and YouTube said that the copyright of uploaded material belonged to THEM. They changed it recently. Time for another change.

  104. @Donald Just because it’s in the ToS, EULA, or whatever, doesn’t make it right. The TOS needs to change then. The old EULA for MySpace and YouTube said that the copyright of uploaded material belonged to THEM. They changed it recently. Time for another change.

  105. Scoble, that was my comment.

    I only posted that here because I went thru my rss,Doc searles had a post about it, then I read your post, and saw the similarities in the language (erased) used.

    It gave ME perspective in whats important.

    You have also posted in the past about perspective.

    I didnt mean the post to “use against you”,

  106. Scoble, that was my comment.

    I only posted that here because I went thru my rss,Doc searles had a post about it, then I read your post, and saw the similarities in the language (erased) used.

    It gave ME perspective in whats important.

    You have also posted in the past about perspective.

    I didnt mean the post to “use against you”,

  107. Wow.. People on here are getting a bit nasty with each other.

    Anyway… The whole facebook debacle is why I have my blog on hosting that I pay for *and why I also make sure that I have a copy of the database. In fact, I have it set up so that my install of WordPress *automatically send me a weekly back-up to my gmail address.

    Of course, that does no good should Gmail decide to suspend me for some reason. Though, I am working on getting the spam filtering working on my hosting so that I can not rely on Gmail for my e-mail. Well that and I have a friend who has problems communicating with Google’s mail servers, so I have incentive not to use Gmail.

  108. Wow.. People on here are getting a bit nasty with each other.

    Anyway… The whole facebook debacle is why I have my blog on hosting that I pay for *and why I also make sure that I have a copy of the database. In fact, I have it set up so that my install of WordPress *automatically send me a weekly back-up to my gmail address.

    Of course, that does no good should Gmail decide to suspend me for some reason. Though, I am working on getting the spam filtering working on my hosting so that I can not rely on Gmail for my e-mail. Well that and I have a friend who has problems communicating with Google’s mail servers, so I have incentive not to use Gmail.

  109. Hi Robert,
    I am one of your 5000 friends on Facebook and I really don’t want to wade into who is right and wrong here. I really thought about your point and it is true – there just seems like there should be something else that can be done other than being erased. I have a lot of memories tied into Facebook, (I know sounds really sad – yeah I know), but I do. And the bigger issue is that they are building a community and like any community, sure you need to punish those that misbehave but we usually put them in jail and make them do some time. Even the notion of putting all your stuff in a box and sending you packing is not really much of a solution. When I went to click on your profile picture during the ban and I got shunted to my home status page – it felt really weird – it was like you had really been erased. And then the thought – what if I got erased? What if I had used some tool and made a mistake and got turfed – that would not be cool – I have made contact with all my old high school and university buddies through Facebook and now what? They all hang out in this community and I can’t come back in? – that is really weird and off putting. I am glad you are back on Facebook because that is where I am – thanks for the post.

    Cheers – Eric

  110. Hi Robert,
    I am one of your 5000 friends on Facebook and I really don’t want to wade into who is right and wrong here. I really thought about your point and it is true – there just seems like there should be something else that can be done other than being erased. I have a lot of memories tied into Facebook, (I know sounds really sad – yeah I know), but I do. And the bigger issue is that they are building a community and like any community, sure you need to punish those that misbehave but we usually put them in jail and make them do some time. Even the notion of putting all your stuff in a box and sending you packing is not really much of a solution. When I went to click on your profile picture during the ban and I got shunted to my home status page – it felt really weird – it was like you had really been erased. And then the thought – what if I got erased? What if I had used some tool and made a mistake and got turfed – that would not be cool – I have made contact with all my old high school and university buddies through Facebook and now what? They all hang out in this community and I can’t come back in? – that is really weird and off putting. I am glad you are back on Facebook because that is where I am – thanks for the post.

    Cheers – Eric

  111. Just another reason why social networking is at least partially all hype and little substance. Flickr (Yahoo) can do the same thing to you.

    I’m personally more of a fan of things like OpenID, XFN, etc. Things I can host myself and manage my identity. I host my own blog for this reason. I host my own photos/videos for this reason. I keep backups of my data for this reason. I own my domain for this reason.

    Everyone can visit, I have full text feeds, but I control my content. I can move my domain as I wish, update as I wish, and do what I want without someone telling me otherwise.

    I like Google, Yahoo, etc. But would I trust them with my online identity? No. Do I trust myself? Yea, I do.

    I wish more would do the same.

    What happens when these companies get bought out, change focus, or just shut down? What happens to your data then?

    That’s why I like the syndication model. Share your content, but control the distribution point. You can read many of my blog posts on planet mozilla, or your feed reader, I don’t care. But the url to that feed is mine. Not FeedBurner/Google’s, not wordpress.com, not typepad.

    I changed my CMS from movabletype to wordpress, and changed hosts since I started blogging. Every post, every comment was preserved. I like that. In 10 years, I’ll love that.

  112. Just another reason why social networking is at least partially all hype and little substance. Flickr (Yahoo) can do the same thing to you.

    I’m personally more of a fan of things like OpenID, XFN, etc. Things I can host myself and manage my identity. I host my own blog for this reason. I host my own photos/videos for this reason. I keep backups of my data for this reason. I own my domain for this reason.

    Everyone can visit, I have full text feeds, but I control my content. I can move my domain as I wish, update as I wish, and do what I want without someone telling me otherwise.

    I like Google, Yahoo, etc. But would I trust them with my online identity? No. Do I trust myself? Yea, I do.

    I wish more would do the same.

    What happens when these companies get bought out, change focus, or just shut down? What happens to your data then?

    That’s why I like the syndication model. Share your content, but control the distribution point. You can read many of my blog posts on planet mozilla, or your feed reader, I don’t care. But the url to that feed is mine. Not FeedBurner/Google’s, not wordpress.com, not typepad.

    I changed my CMS from movabletype to wordpress, and changed hosts since I started blogging. Every post, every comment was preserved. I like that. In 10 years, I’ll love that.

  113. @70. I won’t because I’m not so naive as to put data that I would need in the future on a FREE web site. Not sure how comments make a photo any more valuable. I’d rather keep he photo than the comments. Then again.

    @71 Uh…actually, yes it does. Just ask any attorney. These companies do this to protect themselves from possible lawsuits from naive people like Scoble. These sites are FREE. Thus they are under no obligation to guarantee anything because there is no shared risk. YOU VOLUNTARILY agree to participate. You don’t have to participate. And they are under no obligation, because it is free, to guarantee any level of service. If you want guarantees, crack open your wallet and start paying. Then you can negotiate a higher level of service. YouTube and MySpace changed their copyright language to protect THEMSELVES, no because of any user appeasement. Again, if you want them changed, be prepared to offer them a rea$on

  114. @70. I won’t because I’m not so naive as to put data that I would need in the future on a FREE web site. Not sure how comments make a photo any more valuable. I’d rather keep he photo than the comments. Then again.

    @71 Uh…actually, yes it does. Just ask any attorney. These companies do this to protect themselves from possible lawsuits from naive people like Scoble. These sites are FREE. Thus they are under no obligation to guarantee anything because there is no shared risk. YOU VOLUNTARILY agree to participate. You don’t have to participate. And they are under no obligation, because it is free, to guarantee any level of service. If you want guarantees, crack open your wallet and start paying. Then you can negotiate a higher level of service. YouTube and MySpace changed their copyright language to protect THEMSELVES, no because of any user appeasement. Again, if you want them changed, be prepared to offer them a rea$on

  115. @70. I won’t because I’m not so naive as to put data that I would need in the future on a FREE web site. Not sure how comments make a photo any more valuable. I’d rather keep he photo than the comments. Then again.

    @71 Uh…actually, yes it does. Just ask any attorney. These companies do this to protect themselves from possible lawsuits from naive people like Scoble. These sites are FREE. Thus they are under no obligation to guarantee anything because there is no shared risk. YOU VOLUNTARILY agree to participate. You don’t have to participate. And they are under no obligation, because it is free, to guarantee any level of service. If you want guarantees, crack open your wallet and start paying. Then you can negotiate a higher level of service. YouTube and MySpace changed their copyright language to protect THEMSELVES, no because of any user appeasement. Again, if you want them changed, be prepared to offer them a rea$on

  116. @70. I won’t because I’m not so naive as to put data that I would need in the future on a FREE web site. Not sure how comments make a photo any more valuable. I’d rather keep he photo than the comments. Then again.

    @71 Uh…actually, yes it does. Just ask any attorney. These companies do this to protect themselves from possible lawsuits from naive people like Scoble. These sites are FREE. Thus they are under no obligation to guarantee anything because there is no shared risk. YOU VOLUNTARILY agree to participate. You don’t have to participate. And they are under no obligation, because it is free, to guarantee any level of service. If you want guarantees, crack open your wallet and start paying. Then you can negotiate a higher level of service. YouTube and MySpace changed their copyright language to protect THEMSELVES, no because of any user appeasement. Again, if you want them changed, be prepared to offer them a rea$on

  117. @70. I won’t because I’m not so naive as to put data that I would need in the future on a FREE web site. Not sure how comments make a photo any more valuable. I’d rather keep he photo than the comments. Then again.

    @71 Uh…actually, yes it does. Just ask any attorney. These companies do this to protect themselves from possible lawsuits from naive people like Scoble. These sites are FREE. Thus they are under no obligation to guarantee anything because there is no shared risk. YOU VOLUNTARILY agree to participate. You don’t have to participate. And they are under no obligation, because it is free, to guarantee any level of service. If you want guarantees, crack open your wallet and start paying. Then you can negotiate a higher level of service. YouTube and MySpace changed their copyright language to protect THEMSELVES, no because of any user appeasement. Again, if you want them changed, be prepared to offer them a rea$on

  118. @70. I won’t because I’m not so naive as to put data that I would need in the future on a FREE web site. Not sure how comments make a photo any more valuable. I’d rather keep he photo than the comments. Then again.

    @71 Uh…actually, yes it does. Just ask any attorney. These companies do this to protect themselves from possible lawsuits from naive people like Scoble. These sites are FREE. Thus they are under no obligation to guarantee anything because there is no shared risk. YOU VOLUNTARILY agree to participate. You don’t have to participate. And they are under no obligation, because it is free, to guarantee any level of service. If you want guarantees, crack open your wallet and start paying. Then you can negotiate a higher level of service. YouTube and MySpace changed their copyright language to protect THEMSELVES, no because of any user appeasement. Again, if you want them changed, be prepared to offer them a rea$on

  119. Ahhh so now this new Web 2.0 isn’t exactly the digital utopia that bloggers have been preaching about? Welcome to Reality, glad you made it.

    Those Seagate backup hard drives not working? Back-up the backup’s with an off-site back-up disaster recovery plan, and have an analog copy to boot. In practical terms, don’t throw away the tapes and don’t trust your data to anyone.

  120. Ahhh so now this new Web 2.0 isn’t exactly the digital utopia that bloggers have been preaching about? Welcome to Reality, glad you made it.

    Those Seagate backup hard drives not working? Back-up the backup’s with an off-site back-up disaster recovery plan, and have an analog copy to boot. In practical terms, don’t throw away the tapes and don’t trust your data to anyone.

  121. @74 “I have made contact with all my old high school and university buddies through Facebook and now what? They all hang out in this community and I can’t come back in? – that is really weird and off putting.”

    So, what would you be willing to PAY FB to ensure you could depend on the data being there and have recourse of something were to happen? Because that is likely the only way FB will modify its TOS. Offering a paid service for a higher level of service. You pay nothing, expect to get nothing.

  122. @74 “I have made contact with all my old high school and university buddies through Facebook and now what? They all hang out in this community and I can’t come back in? – that is really weird and off putting.”

    So, what would you be willing to PAY FB to ensure you could depend on the data being there and have recourse of something were to happen? Because that is likely the only way FB will modify its TOS. Offering a paid service for a higher level of service. You pay nothing, expect to get nothing.

  123. Robert said: “the problem is that when Flickr deletes a photo, they delete more than just that person’s photo: they also delete MY comments with it.”

    I honestly don’t get why people want everything they say and do online to be stored forever. We don’t have that expectation about the “real world.” Why do we have that expectation about the Web?

    I’d rather my stuff was deleted!! I look back at things I wrote in forums many years ago and think, oh great, some day somebody is going to use this against me.

    I’ll say again, I don’t get it, any more than I would get having a tape recorder running 24 hours a day to archive my every conversation.

    Life should be about living, about moving forward, not capturing every single little thing we say or do so that we or somebody else can look backwards at our every thought.

    For God’s sake, NObody is THAT important!

  124. Robert said: “the problem is that when Flickr deletes a photo, they delete more than just that person’s photo: they also delete MY comments with it.”

    I honestly don’t get why people want everything they say and do online to be stored forever. We don’t have that expectation about the “real world.” Why do we have that expectation about the Web?

    I’d rather my stuff was deleted!! I look back at things I wrote in forums many years ago and think, oh great, some day somebody is going to use this against me.

    I’ll say again, I don’t get it, any more than I would get having a tape recorder running 24 hours a day to archive my every conversation.

    Life should be about living, about moving forward, not capturing every single little thing we say or do so that we or somebody else can look backwards at our every thought.

    For God’s sake, NObody is THAT important!

  125. >You pay nothing, expect to get nothing.

    Now this is an argument that I think is totally BS.
    It’s the members of Facebook who have earned the service a $15 billion valuation. Every member there pays plenty by inputing their time and data and by clicking on the stupid ads.

    Anybody who thinks Facebook members can be treated like crap because they don’t make Facebook even richer with direct dollars is being totally ridiculous.

  126. >You pay nothing, expect to get nothing.

    Now this is an argument that I think is totally BS.
    It’s the members of Facebook who have earned the service a $15 billion valuation. Every member there pays plenty by inputing their time and data and by clicking on the stupid ads.

    Anybody who thinks Facebook members can be treated like crap because they don’t make Facebook even richer with direct dollars is being totally ridiculous.

  127. Robert, while I appreciate you pushing the envelope and opening up some important discussions about data ownership, I’m bothered by your choice of the word “erase” in this blog post. The fact is, nothing was ever physically erased from your FB account. I read all of the correspondence that Facebook sent you during this episode and they were very clear that your account was SUSPENDED (not erased) because your script looked like it might be malicious. They were also very clear that the account would be reinstated if you had a good explanation for what happened or if you agreed to stop running the script. I know that this is just semantics but I think you should be more careful about the words you’re choosing. And per the Terms of Use, they were not obligated to invite you back, so it seems very odd that you’re going on the attack again.

    OK, I got that off my chest. Have a great time at CES. I don’t always agree with you but you still have my attention!

  128. Robert, while I appreciate you pushing the envelope and opening up some important discussions about data ownership, I’m bothered by your choice of the word “erase” in this blog post. The fact is, nothing was ever physically erased from your FB account. I read all of the correspondence that Facebook sent you during this episode and they were very clear that your account was SUSPENDED (not erased) because your script looked like it might be malicious. They were also very clear that the account would be reinstated if you had a good explanation for what happened or if you agreed to stop running the script. I know that this is just semantics but I think you should be more careful about the words you’re choosing. And per the Terms of Use, they were not obligated to invite you back, so it seems very odd that you’re going on the attack again.

    OK, I got that off my chest. Have a great time at CES. I don’t always agree with you but you still have my attention!

  129. “You’re blog is stored on WordPress.com rather than using the amazing WordPress software on your own hosted site. If you don’t host it, IMO, you don’t own it.”

    If Scoble wanted to move blog software, or move to his own host, a complete XML export of all his posts, comments, categories, tags… all his data is one click away. All his permalinks will still work. This in addition to the XML-RPC and Atom APIs that WordPress.com supports.

  130. “You’re blog is stored on WordPress.com rather than using the amazing WordPress software on your own hosted site. If you don’t host it, IMO, you don’t own it.”

    If Scoble wanted to move blog software, or move to his own host, a complete XML export of all his posts, comments, categories, tags… all his data is one click away. All his permalinks will still work. This in addition to the XML-RPC and Atom APIs that WordPress.com supports.

  131. Mike Doeff: you’re being pedantic. What if Facebook had decided to not turn back on my account? My account would have stayed “erased.”

    Yeah, my stuff would still be on a hard drive somewhere, but for all intents and purposes my entire account (and everything that was done on it) was gone.

    Very odd that I’m going on the attack? I want to get this stuff changed. Many people have had their accounts erased and have NOT had the recourse of a popular blog.

  132. Mike Doeff: you’re being pedantic. What if Facebook had decided to not turn back on my account? My account would have stayed “erased.”

    Yeah, my stuff would still be on a hard drive somewhere, but for all intents and purposes my entire account (and everything that was done on it) was gone.

    Very odd that I’m going on the attack? I want to get this stuff changed. Many people have had their accounts erased and have NOT had the recourse of a popular blog.

  133. Robert , to make you life easier in the future why dont I ( and we all infact ) just sign a little creative commons license in regards to our personal information. To save you some time I have created a suitable page here

    http://www.loudmouthman.com/agreement/

    There, now I grant you additional permission to use Microsoft Word formats to store my personal information for your own use.

    Thanks Robert its been a hoot!

  134. Robert , to make you life easier in the future why dont I ( and we all infact ) just sign a little creative commons license in regards to our personal information. To save you some time I have created a suitable page here

    http://www.loudmouthman.com/agreement/

    There, now I grant you additional permission to use Microsoft Word formats to store my personal information for your own use.

    Thanks Robert its been a hoot!

  135. On Christmas day, a friend on MySpace sent me a message on MySpace to advise me to change my password because obviously my site had been compromised. I am always careful to review each potential friend’s site before accepting them. But somehow I got phished for 1 hour, just enough time for the phisher to send out 10 bulletins during 1 hour to all my friends. Probably I logged in without realizing that the URL at the time was not myspace.com thus got phished.

    Like Twitter, bulletins only last for moments so most of my friends didn’t notice. I sent out an apology to all my MySpace friends by bulletin (some read, most missed it no doubt) and changed my password. It was Christmas Day but fortunately the wifi on the terrace of the Hanlei Bay Cafe where I was having lunch was working just fine.

    So I had changed my password and was back on MySpace.

    The next day I went to log in and suddenly my profile was “blocked”. I couldn’t send wall comments.

    I sent e-mails to customer service at MySpace telling them: Hey, I already changed my password.

    In any case, in the end I got an actual e-mail from MySpace, late but sincere, and now everything is fine. But if I had lost that profile …and all my Friends … that would have been very sad.

  136. On Christmas day, a friend on MySpace sent me a message on MySpace to advise me to change my password because obviously my site had been compromised. I am always careful to review each potential friend’s site before accepting them. But somehow I got phished for 1 hour, just enough time for the phisher to send out 10 bulletins during 1 hour to all my friends. Probably I logged in without realizing that the URL at the time was not myspace.com thus got phished.

    Like Twitter, bulletins only last for moments so most of my friends didn’t notice. I sent out an apology to all my MySpace friends by bulletin (some read, most missed it no doubt) and changed my password. It was Christmas Day but fortunately the wifi on the terrace of the Hanlei Bay Cafe where I was having lunch was working just fine.

    So I had changed my password and was back on MySpace.

    The next day I went to log in and suddenly my profile was “blocked”. I couldn’t send wall comments.

    I sent e-mails to customer service at MySpace telling them: Hey, I already changed my password.

    In any case, in the end I got an actual e-mail from MySpace, late but sincere, and now everything is fine. But if I had lost that profile …and all my Friends … that would have been very sad.

  137. “And people wonder why I love the open public Web”

    Nope, I’m wondering *if* you actually love or even understand the open public Web, since you keep on using and praising closed services and walled gardens.

    Maybe it’s time you start being a bit more critical about the basic principles on which stuff you write about and companies you work for are founded.

    People have called you on it time and time again, at the very least since way back when you started working for Microsoft. What were you thinking before Facebook turned of your account, that we were just a bunch of paranoid morons?

  138. “And people wonder why I love the open public Web”

    Nope, I’m wondering *if* you actually love or even understand the open public Web, since you keep on using and praising closed services and walled gardens.

    Maybe it’s time you start being a bit more critical about the basic principles on which stuff you write about and companies you work for are founded.

    People have called you on it time and time again, at the very least since way back when you started working for Microsoft. What were you thinking before Facebook turned of your account, that we were just a bunch of paranoid morons?

  139. Erased isn’t even the right word, as the ‘data’ came back, had it truly been ‘erased’ well, it would need an Easter miracle to be resurrected. Congrats on shifting the argument though, you have an uncanny political knack for that.

  140. Erased isn’t even the right word, as the ‘data’ came back, had it truly been ‘erased’ well, it would need an Easter miracle to be resurrected. Congrats on shifting the argument though, you have an uncanny political knack for that.

  141. I am just wondering why you still stay on Facebook? Are their services so valuable to you? How about the etical issues?
    You have to comply in a Terms of Services that (as I have understood it) don’t agree with.
    Your story raised a great discussion about privacy and ownership. Facebook made clear what it believes.

  142. I am just wondering why you still stay on Facebook? Are their services so valuable to you? How about the etical issues?
    You have to comply in a Terms of Services that (as I have understood it) don’t agree with.
    Your story raised a great discussion about privacy and ownership. Facebook made clear what it believes.

  143. If I’m going to get banned from a site like Facebook, then I’d be glad that they’d erased my data from their system. If I no longer have access to that data (MY data) then why should anyone they?

  144. If I’m going to get banned from a site like Facebook, then I’d be glad that they’d erased my data from their system. If I no longer have access to that data (MY data) then why should anyone they?

  145. You are an attentionwhore.

    You are not special.

    You agreed to their TOS when you registered.

    You broke the TOS with your ‘look i’m a big man can’t stop memememememe’ attitude.

    FB kicked your butt for it (rightfully). Their service, their rules.

    People laugh at you for this (again rightfully), and you try and cover yourself with saying ‘But i did it for the greater good, long live the open web’

    Please … you’re sad.

  146. You are an attentionwhore.

    You are not special.

    You agreed to their TOS when you registered.

    You broke the TOS with your ‘look i’m a big man can’t stop memememememe’ attitude.

    FB kicked your butt for it (rightfully). Their service, their rules.

    People laugh at you for this (again rightfully), and you try and cover yourself with saying ‘But i did it for the greater good, long live the open web’

    Please … you’re sad.

  147. Scoble,
    I will say, I dont find I agree with you too many times, but in this case I am on your side. What bothers me, and I think many are missing this, is that we are making an investment in these networks. We invest out time and energy and we expect a return on that investment. I wrote a post on my thoughts and would love your opinion (http://tinyurl.com/24c3qk)

    Happy New Year, hope you have a great one

    regards

    jimmy

  148. Scoble,
    I will say, I dont find I agree with you too many times, but in this case I am on your side. What bothers me, and I think many are missing this, is that we are making an investment in these networks. We invest out time and energy and we expect a return on that investment. I wrote a post on my thoughts and would love your opinion (http://tinyurl.com/24c3qk)

    Happy New Year, hope you have a great one

    regards

    jimmy

  149. Damn, my account had been disable… was it for the group I’d created to support you i.e “” or because I was adding some of its members as friends, I don’t know ’cause I didn’t received any warning from FB.
    I’m starting to be really pissed off by this company too.
    Why can’t they just leave your account alive but suppress some feature instead of erasing you!!!

    UPDATE: I recaived this email after my account been suspended

    “Hi,

    Your account has been disabled for persistent misuse of the site. Please contact disabled@facebook.com for more information.

    The Facebook Team”

  150. Damn, my account had been disable… was it for the group I’d created to support you i.e “” or because I was adding some of its members as friends, I don’t know ’cause I didn’t received any warning from FB.
    I’m starting to be really pissed off by this company too.
    Why can’t they just leave your account alive but suppress some feature instead of erasing you!!!

    UPDATE: I recaived this email after my account been suspended

    “Hi,

    Your account has been disabled for persistent misuse of the site. Please contact disabled@facebook.com for more information.

    The Facebook Team”

  151. Oh, ferchrissakes, you violated their TOS (with MY date) and they took you down until you reached an agreement to behave. Stop sniveling. And it’s hard to forget those things for a moment, Robert. I’m still pissed.

  152. Oh, ferchrissakes, you violated their TOS (with MY date) and they took you down until you reached an agreement to behave. Stop sniveling. And it’s hard to forget those things for a moment, Robert. I’m still pissed.

  153. You are nto goign to like this Robert:

    1. 3rd party FB app s have been used to backup FB data..in fact I sue one that does not violate FB TOS.

    2. You choose to violate FB TOS..knowing fully the consequences

    3. FB has a duty to protect everyone’s data not just yours..

    Its getting freaking old SIR!

  154. You are nto goign to like this Robert:

    1. 3rd party FB app s have been used to backup FB data..in fact I sue one that does not violate FB TOS.

    2. You choose to violate FB TOS..knowing fully the consequences

    3. FB has a duty to protect everyone’s data not just yours..

    Its getting freaking old SIR!

  155. I did not use or even think of using his death the sick way you just placed on my post.

    The point of Olmstead’s post was that you weren’t supposed to use his death AT ALL to make your point, especially to “silence” someone. “Perspective” my ass.

    Scoble is a blogger and his post title said he was ERASED.

    erased.

    perspective.

    Ok, maybe I misunderstood you. I’m not perfect. So what the f–k did you mean? “My tragedy is more important than your little Facebook tragedy?” Nice. “Be glad you’re not dead, like Andrew Olmstead?” Well that’s a brilliant observation you can make anytime something bad happens: Well, your Facebook problems were bad, at least you didn’t get BLOWED UP in Iraq! Oh that makes everything SO much better now. Thank you Stewart Smalley.

    Mentioning Andrew Olmsted’s death was clearly a comparison of blogger-to-blogger tragedies. That you saw it as some attempt to stifle political debate . . .

    To me, saying “Perspective” was another way of saying, “You think YOU have it bad? At least you’re not dead, like Olmstead, so you and your little Facebook saga is insignificant: shut the hell up.

    The IRONY was that Olmstead’s last post said to not use him as some kind of point to stifle conversation.

    I don’t know what to make of your “blogger to blogger tragedies?” Is Olmstead’s death supposed to be MORE tragic, meaningful, or relevant to this issue with Facebook because he was also a blogger? “Let us bow our heads because we lost one of our own — someone who TYPED STUFF on a FREAKING keyboard.”

    Kris might as well have said, “You think YOU have it bad, Scoble? Well Om Malik just had a freaking HEART ATTACK! So there!” Or why not use Marc Canter as an example of “Perspective?” It’s at least as big a non sequitur. How about ANYTIME ANY blogger complains about ANYTHING, we all just jump on the comments and start naming DEAD BLOGGERS and encouraging people to maintain “Perspective?”

    The only meaning I could wrangle out of “Perspective” was a pollyannaish “Hey, look on the BRIGHT SIDE,” which seemed an equally moronic observation, if not quite as self-righteous.

    But, you know, maybe I’m just losing “perspective.” [rolls eyes]

  156. I did not use or even think of using his death the sick way you just placed on my post.

    The point of Olmstead’s post was that you weren’t supposed to use his death AT ALL to make your point, especially to “silence” someone. “Perspective” my ass.

    Scoble is a blogger and his post title said he was ERASED.

    erased.

    perspective.

    Ok, maybe I misunderstood you. I’m not perfect. So what the f–k did you mean? “My tragedy is more important than your little Facebook tragedy?” Nice. “Be glad you’re not dead, like Andrew Olmstead?” Well that’s a brilliant observation you can make anytime something bad happens: Well, your Facebook problems were bad, at least you didn’t get BLOWED UP in Iraq! Oh that makes everything SO much better now. Thank you Stewart Smalley.

    Mentioning Andrew Olmsted’s death was clearly a comparison of blogger-to-blogger tragedies. That you saw it as some attempt to stifle political debate . . .

    To me, saying “Perspective” was another way of saying, “You think YOU have it bad? At least you’re not dead, like Olmstead, so you and your little Facebook saga is insignificant: shut the hell up.

    The IRONY was that Olmstead’s last post said to not use him as some kind of point to stifle conversation.

    I don’t know what to make of your “blogger to blogger tragedies?” Is Olmstead’s death supposed to be MORE tragic, meaningful, or relevant to this issue with Facebook because he was also a blogger? “Let us bow our heads because we lost one of our own — someone who TYPED STUFF on a FREAKING keyboard.”

    Kris might as well have said, “You think YOU have it bad, Scoble? Well Om Malik just had a freaking HEART ATTACK! So there!” Or why not use Marc Canter as an example of “Perspective?” It’s at least as big a non sequitur. How about ANYTIME ANY blogger complains about ANYTHING, we all just jump on the comments and start naming DEAD BLOGGERS and encouraging people to maintain “Perspective?”

    The only meaning I could wrangle out of “Perspective” was a pollyannaish “Hey, look on the BRIGHT SIDE,” which seemed an equally moronic observation, if not quite as self-righteous.

    But, you know, maybe I’m just losing “perspective.” [rolls eyes]

  157. “And people wonder why I love the open public Web…”

    Really? Do they really? Or is that just rhetoric?

  158. “And people wonder why I love the open public Web…”

    Really? Do they really? Or is that just rhetoric?

  159. Ooh, I’m scared

    Pathetic.

    Actually, it looks like the Deliverance-powered Facebook “hack”, which saw über-blogger Robert Scoble temporarily booted from the social network on Thursday, could prove a boon to the Universe Combobulator. With the Scobleizer f…

  160. Maybe next time you won’t blatently violate the company’s TOS from the account your stored all your stuff in.

    I’d never try some kind of picture scraper/syncer, etc from my own Flickr account with 2500+ pictures… I think I’d setup a dummy account to do that with first.

  161. Maybe next time you won’t blatently violate the company’s TOS from the account your stored all your stuff in.

    I’d never try some kind of picture scraper/syncer, etc from my own Flickr account with 2500+ pictures… I think I’d setup a dummy account to do that with first.

  162. I wonder how long it will be until Scoble’s an ID theft victim… living every waking moment on the internet and publishing soooo much detail, it’s only a matter time.

    If your bank account got cleaned out you’d really have something to be indignant about, as opposed to fussing over a few comments and videos.

  163. I wonder how long it will be until Scoble’s an ID theft victim… living every waking moment on the internet and publishing soooo much detail, it’s only a matter time.

    If your bank account got cleaned out you’d really have something to be indignant about, as opposed to fussing over a few comments and videos.

  164. This whole saga was just incredible to watch. Guess it’s a lesson for those who use off-site back-up, Flickr, and lots of other stuff. Robert, you can have my birthday. I just want the next one ….

  165. This whole saga was just incredible to watch. Guess it’s a lesson for those who use off-site back-up, Flickr, and lots of other stuff. Robert, you can have my birthday. I just want the next one ….

  166. That’s kinda of scary, what if Google did that, all your gmail, google docs, reader feeds, blogger blogs, etc. Gone. That would totally suck, I might have to back some of that stuff to a ext. HD.

  167. That’s kinda of scary, what if Google did that, all your gmail, google docs, reader feeds, blogger blogs, etc. Gone. That would totally suck, I might have to back some of that stuff to a ext. HD.

  168. Whoa there, I take some serious issue with this kind of nonsense. How is FaceBook any different to ANY company that has terms and conditions? Conditions that you broke Robert, knowingly and willfully, in the pursuit of a Federal Crime.

    You can upload to Qik all you want and then what? The wind changes and you’re hounding them?

    That what this sounds like – you’re building a lynch mob against FaceBook for doing nothing more than uphold their terms and conditions. But then they folded and let you back in – anyone else and they’d have pressed charges. Don’t try and paint it like you’re doing it for the people, trying to keep their email addresses and birthdays safe. You and Plaxo were the rogue guns here.

    Get it – the only data you own is the data you put in there. If I choose to “friend” someone I have to take on the responsibility that entails. Who needs phishers and scammers when we have friends ready to sell our data to other companies. And yeah, “sell” may be a strong word here but end of the day, being a technology eejit is how you make your money, it’s why we read your blog and we know the affair was not done malicously – but that means, in other words, you stole 5000 instances of personally identifiable information in order to further your career/get hits/do your job. :- pretty much THE definition of theft for personal gain.

    Robert – do you even operate on the public open Web? Do you know why people use services like FaceBook? Why they trust these companies to keep teir data safe and out of the hands of data-scraping phishers that plague us every single day of our lives.

    Don’t be a jerk. This lynch mob is getting old fast.

  169. Whoa there, I take some serious issue with this kind of nonsense. How is FaceBook any different to ANY company that has terms and conditions? Conditions that you broke Robert, knowingly and willfully, in the pursuit of a Federal Crime.

    You can upload to Qik all you want and then what? The wind changes and you’re hounding them?

    That what this sounds like – you’re building a lynch mob against FaceBook for doing nothing more than uphold their terms and conditions. But then they folded and let you back in – anyone else and they’d have pressed charges. Don’t try and paint it like you’re doing it for the people, trying to keep their email addresses and birthdays safe. You and Plaxo were the rogue guns here.

    Get it – the only data you own is the data you put in there. If I choose to “friend” someone I have to take on the responsibility that entails. Who needs phishers and scammers when we have friends ready to sell our data to other companies. And yeah, “sell” may be a strong word here but end of the day, being a technology eejit is how you make your money, it’s why we read your blog and we know the affair was not done malicously – but that means, in other words, you stole 5000 instances of personally identifiable information in order to further your career/get hits/do your job. :- pretty much THE definition of theft for personal gain.

    Robert – do you even operate on the public open Web? Do you know why people use services like FaceBook? Why they trust these companies to keep teir data safe and out of the hands of data-scraping phishers that plague us every single day of our lives.

    Don’t be a jerk. This lynch mob is getting old fast.

  170. I think facebook has gotten to a point where it is such an integral part of some people’s lives, both socially and professionally, that most of us are willing to put up with stuff like this.

    In agreement with Francine Hardaway’s blog about predictions for 2008, I think that in spite of how attached people have gotten to facebook, it will decline sooner or later.

    For me, it is not the threat of being erased, but the annoyance of “oregon trail” and “vampire” apps that I want nothing to do with.

    But hey, what can I say, I still love facebook. :)

  171. I think facebook has gotten to a point where it is such an integral part of some people’s lives, both socially and professionally, that most of us are willing to put up with stuff like this.

    In agreement with Francine Hardaway’s blog about predictions for 2008, I think that in spite of how attached people have gotten to facebook, it will decline sooner or later.

    For me, it is not the threat of being erased, but the annoyance of “oregon trail” and “vampire” apps that I want nothing to do with.

    But hey, what can I say, I still love facebook. :)

  172. Haven’t followed this whole affair truthfully – the nitty gritty specifics of why you violated the TOS of your Facebook account.

    I don’t use Facebook precisely because it is a “walled garden” as you say. And that’s obvious from the day you join up. You can’t navigate around and check it out and see if your friends are on it, etc. like MySpace, or Twitter. (Not offering those as models of perfection per se, but they are out in open.)

    If you love the “open web” then sometimes you have to stick up for your convictions – and that’s why I’m not on Facebook.

  173. Haven’t followed this whole affair truthfully – the nitty gritty specifics of why you violated the TOS of your Facebook account.

    I don’t use Facebook precisely because it is a “walled garden” as you say. And that’s obvious from the day you join up. You can’t navigate around and check it out and see if your friends are on it, etc. like MySpace, or Twitter. (Not offering those as models of perfection per se, but they are out in open.)

    If you love the “open web” then sometimes you have to stick up for your convictions – and that’s why I’m not on Facebook.

  174. Robert – I think you bring up a great point in re: that you only got restored due to your fame. Maybe you can really pave the way for getting a system in place that listens to the non-famous too. That sounds like a pretty worthy cause that someone like you would be a great leader for!

  175. Robert – I think you bring up a great point in re: that you only got restored due to your fame. Maybe you can really pave the way for getting a system in place that listens to the non-famous too. That sounds like a pretty worthy cause that someone like you would be a great leader for!

  176. mj and Fred Gott: here’s why you’re wrong:

    Facebook imports data from GMail without asking GMail’s users whether they want it imported or not.

    Since you don’t seem to mind that you MUST also allow GMail to import back out of Facebook the SAME WAY that Facebook is.

    It’s amazing that I haven’t seen you speak up about that.

    Facebook: your data roach motel. Your data can go in but it can’t leave.

    I say “bull.”

  177. mj and Fred Gott: here’s why you’re wrong:

    Facebook imports data from GMail without asking GMail’s users whether they want it imported or not.

    Since you don’t seem to mind that you MUST also allow GMail to import back out of Facebook the SAME WAY that Facebook is.

    It’s amazing that I haven’t seen you speak up about that.

    Facebook: your data roach motel. Your data can go in but it can’t leave.

    I say “bull.”

  178. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  179. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  180. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  181. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  182. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  183. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  184. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  185. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  186. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  187. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  188. I assume i need to own my own data, Facebook and other social sites are just added tools for making better use of my data. I would be REALLY annoyed to be erased and i’d lose a lot of connections. I agree I should be able to export the data so I can have the freedom to manage my network the way I want. My problem with this is that it seems you allowed another company to scrape PII. I’ve given you some PII by friending you, but I have not entitled you to share my PII or any other company to harvest my PII. Terms of service is an issue, but federal privacy laws are what I’m more concerned about. I don’t know enough about what happened here to judge whether this was a privacy breach or not, but ultimately that is the topline filter I’d use to look at this.

    sean

  189. You know, all this discussion is just a little too late. I was “found” by someone, with just a phone call, birth name and date of birth. Fortunately, it wasn’t an unwelcome contact, it was a family member I had never met. But she got all she needed to know to locate me, even though I had moved and changed my last name. She made a few phone calls, starting with the local courthouse where I used to live. And ended with a phone call to me at my UNLISTED NUMBER.

    Your data’s already out there, and has been for some time. This was several years ago, and NO internet, NO computer was used. Just a simple phone and a little perseverance. Now *that’s* scary.

  190. You know, all this discussion is just a little too late. I was “found” by someone, with just a phone call, birth name and date of birth. Fortunately, it wasn’t an unwelcome contact, it was a family member I had never met. But she got all she needed to know to locate me, even though I had moved and changed my last name. She made a few phone calls, starting with the local courthouse where I used to live. And ended with a phone call to me at my UNLISTED NUMBER.

    Your data’s already out there, and has been for some time. This was several years ago, and NO internet, NO computer was used. Just a simple phone and a little perseverance. Now *that’s* scary.

  191. At no point did Facebook supply me with a sneaky script that would allow me to suck everyone from LinkedIn or GMAIL into FaceBook. That’s EXACTLY why I’ve not spoken out about it.

    You CAN take YOUR data out, Robert. Just don’t use the service. Delete it all and leave. You can’t whine about wanting their product but also being forced to agree to the T&Cs. No-one forces you to use it.

    You, of all people, would be able to find 5000 hangers on nomatter which social network you joined. So what’s the big fascination with this company you love to hate?

  192. At no point did Facebook supply me with a sneaky script that would allow me to suck everyone from LinkedIn or GMAIL into FaceBook. That’s EXACTLY why I’ve not spoken out about it.

    You CAN take YOUR data out, Robert. Just don’t use the service. Delete it all and leave. You can’t whine about wanting their product but also being forced to agree to the T&Cs. No-one forces you to use it.

    You, of all people, would be able to find 5000 hangers on nomatter which social network you joined. So what’s the big fascination with this company you love to hate?

  193. @122 Even a high school debate team wouldn’t make the feeble “two wrongs make a right”illogical argument to defend their position.

  194. @122 Even a high school debate team wouldn’t make the feeble “two wrongs make a right”illogical argument to defend their position.

  195. @80 “Now this is an argument that I think is totally BS.
    It’s the members of Facebook who have earned the service a $15 billion valuation. Every member there pays plenty by inputing their time and data and by clicking on the stupid ads.

    Anybody who thinks Facebook members can be treated like crap because they don’t make Facebook even richer with direct dollars is being totally ridiculous.”

    No, anybody who thinks they are owed a higher level of service than what is clearly defined in FB’s TOS and doesn’t understand that FB clearly states you use this service voluntarily and they can choose to shut it down without notice, but thinks that doesn’t apply to them is a sucker.

    Your “power to the people” argument sounds very noble, but from a business perspective it is naive. FB is offering the service for FREE. You don’t have to participate. That fact that you invest a lot of time and effort putting data in FB I’m sure is very much appreciated by them….all the way to the advertisers offices.

    Facebook doesn’t care about you. It only cares about your data to the extent it keeps their advertisers happy. If they could train monkeys to enter data that is appealing to advertisers they would do that instead. It would be much cheaper and have a lower legal risk.

  196. @80 “Now this is an argument that I think is totally BS.
    It’s the members of Facebook who have earned the service a $15 billion valuation. Every member there pays plenty by inputing their time and data and by clicking on the stupid ads.

    Anybody who thinks Facebook members can be treated like crap because they don’t make Facebook even richer with direct dollars is being totally ridiculous.”

    No, anybody who thinks they are owed a higher level of service than what is clearly defined in FB’s TOS and doesn’t understand that FB clearly states you use this service voluntarily and they can choose to shut it down without notice, but thinks that doesn’t apply to them is a sucker.

    Your “power to the people” argument sounds very noble, but from a business perspective it is naive. FB is offering the service for FREE. You don’t have to participate. That fact that you invest a lot of time and effort putting data in FB I’m sure is very much appreciated by them….all the way to the advertisers offices.

    Facebook doesn’t care about you. It only cares about your data to the extent it keeps their advertisers happy. If they could train monkeys to enter data that is appealing to advertisers they would do that instead. It would be much cheaper and have a lower legal risk.

  197. I had the same thing happen a year ago with Textamerica. For nearly 2 years I’d been using them as an online photo dump, MMS-ing my photos in, and had gotten Editor’s Choice a few times, etc.

    When they went premium, they merely posted something on their admin area (which I obviously didn’t use) as opposed to sending out emails. I went to login one day and ALL my photos were gone – my whole account was deleted, and the response I received was “tough crap, wanna premium account?” That’s honestly why I’m on Flickr, and why I now keep a local copy of all my photos, even the stupid silly ones I send in from my phone.

  198. I had the same thing happen a year ago with Textamerica. For nearly 2 years I’d been using them as an online photo dump, MMS-ing my photos in, and had gotten Editor’s Choice a few times, etc.

    When they went premium, they merely posted something on their admin area (which I obviously didn’t use) as opposed to sending out emails. I went to login one day and ALL my photos were gone – my whole account was deleted, and the response I received was “tough crap, wanna premium account?” That’s honestly why I’m on Flickr, and why I now keep a local copy of all my photos, even the stupid silly ones I send in from my phone.

  199. I posted before and here is the note that I received from Facebook:
    ——————
    Facebook does not permit users to take actions that other users may find abusive or bothersome, including sending mass friend requests or messages to people you do not know. Your actions on the site violated our Terms of Use and we cannot reactivate your account or retrieve information from it. This is a final decision.

    Thanks for your understanding,

    Bella
    Customer Support Representative
    Facebook
    ———————

    I invited people and sent messages to people that I know. That’s it. Permanent. ERASED.

    Tony

  200. I posted before and here is the note that I received from Facebook:
    ——————
    Facebook does not permit users to take actions that other users may find abusive or bothersome, including sending mass friend requests or messages to people you do not know. Your actions on the site violated our Terms of Use and we cannot reactivate your account or retrieve information from it. This is a final decision.

    Thanks for your understanding,

    Bella
    Customer Support Representative
    Facebook
    ———————

    I invited people and sent messages to people that I know. That’s it. Permanent. ERASED.

    Tony

  201. @130 “That’s honestly why I’m on Flickr…”

    That really doesn’t make much sense, because Flickr can do the same thing to you, and they don’t have to tell you.

  202. @130 “That’s honestly why I’m on Flickr…”

    That really doesn’t make much sense, because Flickr can do the same thing to you, and they don’t have to tell you.

  203. The really annoying thing is Facebook claim they can’t delete your account of you ask them to, but they seem more than capable of doing it when they want.

    – Neil.

  204. The really annoying thing is Facebook claim they can’t delete your account of you ask them to, but they seem more than capable of doing it when they want.

    – Neil.

  205. The fact that you were erased I don’t think it is so spooky. After all we all have real lives. It would be worse if Facebook was meant to conduct business and you were to lose a network of associates. But then again this proves that Facebook knows people don’t use it for serious work otherwise it wouldn’t ban someone so lighthearted.

    By reactivating your profile I believe it’s obvious that actually you were never deleted, rather than disabled. Which makes me wonder what happens in terms of (your) intellectual property (name it your pics for example) since you’re banned. From the moment they don’t erase your profile your data remain on their possession without your knowledge.

  206. The fact that you were erased I don’t think it is so spooky. After all we all have real lives. It would be worse if Facebook was meant to conduct business and you were to lose a network of associates. But then again this proves that Facebook knows people don’t use it for serious work otherwise it wouldn’t ban someone so lighthearted.

    By reactivating your profile I believe it’s obvious that actually you were never deleted, rather than disabled. Which makes me wonder what happens in terms of (your) intellectual property (name it your pics for example) since you’re banned. From the moment they don’t erase your profile your data remain on their possession without your knowledge.

  207. now imagine when they erase (suspend) your domain and all the email addresses just because your competitor make same false statements to a domain registrar. suspend without notice.

  208. now imagine when they erase (suspend) your domain and all the email addresses just because your competitor make same false statements to a domain registrar. suspend without notice.

  209. Even a high school debate team wouldn’t make the feeble “two wrongs make a right”illogical argument to defend their position.

    That’s pretty much what civil disobedience is. A small, non-violent wrong (e.g. chaining yourself to a pole) that is used to bring attention to a much more heinous wrong (e.g. discrimination).

    Your actions on the site violated our Terms of Use and we cannot reactivate your account or retrieve information from it. This is a final decision.

    FACEBOOK HAS SPOKEN!!!

    [hammers timpani]

    Well, now we know what happens when you’re not a famous blogger… ;-)

  210. Even a high school debate team wouldn’t make the feeble “two wrongs make a right”illogical argument to defend their position.

    That’s pretty much what civil disobedience is. A small, non-violent wrong (e.g. chaining yourself to a pole) that is used to bring attention to a much more heinous wrong (e.g. discrimination).

    Your actions on the site violated our Terms of Use and we cannot reactivate your account or retrieve information from it. This is a final decision.

    FACEBOOK HAS SPOKEN!!!

    [hammers timpani]

    Well, now we know what happens when you’re not a famous blogger… ;-)

  211. I don’t know whether I agree with what you write or not, but I do agree that it’s wrong for companies to own our data and not let us use it, so in this fight, I support you and all those who are being screwed over by facebook’s ugly policies.

  212. I don’t know whether I agree with what you write or not, but I do agree that it’s wrong for companies to own our data and not let us use it, so in this fight, I support you and all those who are being screwed over by facebook’s ugly policies.

  213. […] I think the bigger, more important question is why are we wasting our time–whatever it costs–using a service that clearly doesn’t have a viable business model? The same thing could be said for Facebook–especially Facebook–and any number of other services. All that time, all that energy, all that “communication” could be gone in an instant, either because the company joins the deadpool or because someone thinks you violated the rules and deletes you. […]

  214. If your employer owns your work day and Face Book, My Space and Second Life own your social network, what do you own? Sleep.

  215. If your employer owns your work day and Face Book, My Space and Second Life own your social network, what do you own? Sleep.

  216. Seems to me Facebook will not provide their service at no cash cost unless the data you ‘donate’ has some value. Why offer your data if they are not prepared to pay for it?

    When telephone market researchers call me I say, “you want me to provide informative answers to your questions and then you are going to sell this valueable information. Will you at least pay me for my time? No! Thanks, I’ll get back to eating my dinner.”

  217. Seems to me Facebook will not provide their service at no cash cost unless the data you ‘donate’ has some value. Why offer your data if they are not prepared to pay for it?

    When telephone market researchers call me I say, “you want me to provide informative answers to your questions and then you are going to sell this valueable information. Will you at least pay me for my time? No! Thanks, I’ll get back to eating my dinner.”

  218. @141 “That’s pretty much what civil disobedience is. A small, non-violent wrong (e.g. chaining yourself to a pole) that is used to bring attention to a much more heinous wrong (e.g. discrimination).”

    Well, that analogy reeks of hyperbole, don’t you think? It’s not your data, or Scoble’s data. I put it there, not Scoble. Now, if Scoble entered all that data on his own, I would agree with him. But, is was only SHARED with him with permission from his friends. Is Facebook being hypocritical? Sure. But, it’s their game,their rules. You agree to play when you click “agree” when you create an account.

  219. @141 “That’s pretty much what civil disobedience is. A small, non-violent wrong (e.g. chaining yourself to a pole) that is used to bring attention to a much more heinous wrong (e.g. discrimination).”

    Well, that analogy reeks of hyperbole, don’t you think? It’s not your data, or Scoble’s data. I put it there, not Scoble. Now, if Scoble entered all that data on his own, I would agree with him. But, is was only SHARED with him with permission from his friends. Is Facebook being hypocritical? Sure. But, it’s their game,their rules. You agree to play when you click “agree” when you create an account.

  220. Link Digest for January 6, 2008

    Here are some interesting items for the day. Enjoy

    Proposal To Censor Games In India

    Censor board does it yet again !

    Erased

    Scoble vents his frustration at being erased from Facebook.

    Google Lodges Patent For Reading Text In Images And Vid…

  221. Yeah — that happened to my first blog on WordPress. Gone in a flash an no one there would answer me why or if I could get it reinstated if I removed whatever it was they thought was wrong with it.

    That’s when I went to paid hosting and do backups of my blogs, website files and all those other bits and pieces that make up my digital self.

    Sorry this happened to you, Robert. Hope you get satisfaction someday.

    Margaret

  222. Yeah — that happened to my first blog on WordPress. Gone in a flash an no one there would answer me why or if I could get it reinstated if I removed whatever it was they thought was wrong with it.

    That’s when I went to paid hosting and do backups of my blogs, website files and all those other bits and pieces that make up my digital self.

    Sorry this happened to you, Robert. Hope you get satisfaction someday.

    Margaret

  223. Today I was creating new pages to market Northern Arizona University’s statewide sites at nau.edu/distance. Thinking this a wonderful way to market our programs to students directly and be a GOOD steward of tax dollars, especially since AZ faces a $2 billion deficit this year.

    I’d created about 22 new pages when FB disabled my account. Pooooooooffffff! GONE.

    I wasn’t spamming anyone or attempting to poach identities.

    I’ve attended FB conferences and veraciously learn anything/everything FB.

    Yesterday, I sat in on a MarketingProfs webinar with Jerimiah Owyang and felt pleased NAU is ahead of the curve for utilizing FB apps/widgets.

    FB’s actions are VERY disappointing. Especially when I’m part of a very small educational marketing slice who IS using FB for good and am creating healthy integrated educational communities…sounds cheesy…just some educational speak.

    Thanks for the ears.

    Lisa Loeffler
    cityaz17@yahoo.com

  224. Today I was creating new pages to market Northern Arizona University’s statewide sites at nau.edu/distance. Thinking this a wonderful way to market our programs to students directly and be a GOOD steward of tax dollars, especially since AZ faces a $2 billion deficit this year.

    I’d created about 22 new pages when FB disabled my account. Pooooooooffffff! GONE.

    I wasn’t spamming anyone or attempting to poach identities.

    I’ve attended FB conferences and veraciously learn anything/everything FB.

    Yesterday, I sat in on a MarketingProfs webinar with Jerimiah Owyang and felt pleased NAU is ahead of the curve for utilizing FB apps/widgets.

    FB’s actions are VERY disappointing. Especially when I’m part of a very small educational marketing slice who IS using FB for good and am creating healthy integrated educational communities…sounds cheesy…just some educational speak.

    Thanks for the ears.

    Lisa Loeffler
    cityaz17@yahoo.com

  225. […] While some have made a pretty good case for Facebook, it doesn’t change how it’s viewed by business, or how useful it is for me. I’m astounded at home much time everything takes and how limited everything is. Not to mention the data-ownership question. Just ask Robert Scoble on that one. […]