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Unformatted text preview: percent o f Facebo o k users
participated. Zuckerberg’s mo ve appeared to have turned Facebo o k into a demo cracy and helped
empo wer users to determine the f irm’s next step. Despite the upro ar, o nly abo ut 1 percent o f Facebo o k users eventually vo ted o n the measure, but
the 74 percent to 26 percent ruling in f avo r o f the change gave Facebo o k so me co ver to mo ve
f o rward.J. Smith, “Facebo o k TOS Vo ting Co ncludes, Users Vo te f o r New Revised Do cuments,”
Inside Facebo o k, April 23, 2009. This event also demo nstrates that a tempest can be generated by
a relatively small number o f passio nate users. Firms igno re the vo cal and inf luential at their o wn
peril! In Facebo o k’s def ense, the bro ad TOS was pro bably mo re a f o rm o f legal pro tectio n than any
nef ario us attempt to explo it all user po sts ad inf initum. The U.S. legal enviro nment do es require
that explicit terms be def ined and co mmunicated to users, even if these are to ugh f o r laypeo ple to
understand. But a “trust us” attitude to ward user data do esn’t wo rk, particularly f o r a f irm co nsidered to have co mmitted ham-handed gaf f es in the past. Managers must learn f ro m the
f reewheeling Facebo o k co mmunity. In the era o f so cial media, yo ur actio ns are no w subject to
immediate and sustained review. Vio late the public trust, and expect the equivalent o f a highpo wered investigative micro sco pe examining yo ur every mo ve and a very public airing o f the
f indings. Fo r Facebo o k, that micro sco pe will be in place f o r at least the next two decades. In a late 2011 deal
with the U.S. Federal Trade Co mmissio n, Facebo o k settled a series o f go vernmental inquiries
related to issues such as the o nes o utlined abo ve—events that Zuckerberg admits added up to “a
bunch o f mistakes” made by the f irm. Facebo o k agreed to undergo twenty years o f regular thirdparty privacy audits, and to a ho st o f additio nal restrictio ns that include getting users’ co nsent
bef o re making privacy changes, and making co ntent f ro m deleted pro f iles unavailable af ter...
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This document was uploaded on 01/31/2014.
- Winter '14