It’s Spam 2.0 – the start of the social spam revolution.
I’ve seen conversations on 2 separate professional networks that are apalled by them & the loss of privacy that’s implicit – for example, I now know what’s on one of my client’s Amazon Wish Lists. Which I guess is OK if you actually know somebody… but not OK if you’ve scraped an email address & set out to learn anything you can about a person for who-knows-what purpose.
The only defence is to use separate public & personal email addresses – and even that would be defeated by viral tools in these services’ signup processes.
Oh, and Facebook just announced that it’s opening public profiles to search engines – so expect an outrage in 5-6 weeks time. And then folk will adjust and go back to their lives, on & offline.
But the cumulative effect will be for the ‘signal to noise’ ratio to drop – the proportion of genuine messages will reduce, amongst an increase of social spam.
All these rape our privacy.
Expect to see more folk using closed communities (like Phuser ), and the ‘private’ options on Facebook et al. Bit by bit we’ll learn to take control of our own privacy, and take responsibility for our privacy.
That’s the service that Rapleaf offer: to protect & control your privacy. I’m in two minds as to whether they’ll profit from exposing the problem (which they didn’t create…) Or if they’ll be a victim of their own success at exposing a genuine social problem.