I have found myself promising to stop writing about Facebook lately. It surely is a tired old rant, and this really is going to be my last blog post on the matter. After today, you can find Facebook related thoughts on a section of this website called Facebook.
On that page I intend to chronicle my efforts to find a suitable replacement.
On 5/19 I turned all of my Facebook settings to the most private possible ("Custom>me only"). I was surprised to find today that what appears to be a new category just controlling what outsiders can see of my friends was turned to "everyone".
I found this by creating a new Facebook account with a fake name so I could see what people outside of my network could see. On a side note, I picked Ty Webb as my fake name. Ty Webb is the name of the character Chevy Chase played in Caddyshack. Can you believe there are over 700 Ty Webbs on Facebook and most of them have pictures that look exactly like Chevy Chase!
If you are a Facebook user I encourage you to go through this exercise. I found it much more illumnating than the services that tell you what others can or cannot see.
Much to my surprise, I navigated Ty Webb to my Facebook profile and I could see my full list of friends, and could click through to see all of their friends. In the past Facebook only presented a few friends and you could not click on them at all until that person had accepted you as their friend.
Interesting I thought. After bolting down my friends (again), I thought I should have some fun with this -- you know -- now that I could see all of Mark Zuckerberg's friends without actually being his friend. Turns out, Mark is just not very social. He does in fact have a page, but it is a fan page, and I could not find a Facebook page for Mark. He has over 500,000 fans -- but no friends. And I was fool enough to think he would be leading the charge to share the names of his past girlfriends, ex business partners, and current investors and advisors and employees with all of us. I could not see what web sites he had gone to, what he bought with his credit card, or where he was right now either. Not a word about what he was working on, who he was having lunch with today. Turns out Mark Zuckerberg is quite the private person.
Seems strange that he would want everyone else to share their identity information.