So there’s a new “feature” on Facebook. Here’s how it works: Let’s assume that you are one of the few people who has wised up enough about internet privacy to the point where you don’t have every detail about yourself on your Facebook profile. Obviously, this is a revenue issue for the dear folks at Facebook, because they make their dollars off of selling information/targeting ads towards specific types of people. How are they supposed to target you if you don’t have complete profile????? So in kinda creepy, crowdsource fashion, Facebook has figured out a slick way to fill out those profiles that are just lacking: The “Ask” button. Check it out:
This is basically ALMOST EXACTLY like some guy in a bar having his friend ask if you’re single. The wingman does all the work, the other guy gets the reward. (In theory, anyway. I’ve never understood the whole, I’ll totally-win-her-over-by-not-having-enough-balls-to-talk-to-her-myself move.) In this case, Facebook is the shy guy, you are the wingman, in case you didn’t get that. Their “reward” is being able to fit you into a relationship demographic once you answer the question. For example, somebody who is listed as “single” will see different ads than somebody who is listed as “in relationship”. Information is money in this case, which makes the reward very real. Not that an awkward date with somebody some wingman set you up with wouldn’t be equally rewarding…
Can’t blame Facebook for getting creative about their information/data mining, I suppose. What do you think? Creepy? Smart? Will this even be effective? And by effective I mean, for Facebook and for people genuinely trying to get more information about a stranger than they can by just stalking their profile.