As Facebook builds a larger online marketing and data collection infrastructure around the world, in the U.S.,Â India, and in the EU, it’s important regulators, researchers, privacy and consumer protection advocates investigate how it operates its social media marketing business.Â Facebook prefers to keep its interactive “marketing to the social graph” ad approach largely out of public view.Â For example, last week, noted Inside Facebook, there was this change [our bold]:
“Open Graph-enabled third-party websites can now include Like buttons that create a connection with a Page, not just share an object. Page Likes can be more valuable because they opt a user into receiving updates about the Page in their news feed, and displaying the connection on their profile. Developers donâ€™t need to include any description of what the Like button actually points to, meaning users may be unaware that their click is in fact subscribing and connecting them. The change will help developers convert one-time visitors into members of their Pageâ€™s community.”
This is a good illustration of how Facebook (and others) zeal in promoting third party data and financial relationships threatens to further undermine privacy and related consumer protection concerns.