Submission Number: 00010
Received: 11/29/2011 8:29:04 PM
Commenter: David Wise
Agency: Federal Trade Commission
Initiative: Proposed Consent Agreement In the Matter of Facebook, Inc., FTC File No. 0923184
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Facebook should not be investigated for "deception", rather it should be lauded for how it has enabled its users to protect themselves, especially in the flourishing age of cyber-crime. Facebook has extremely simple, easy-to-access security settings (see attachment labeled "Security Settings.jpg") that allow the user to add as many layers of security it deems necessary. Facebook has not been deceptive in its privacy settings. In fact, right before a user can access to a third-party application, there is a screen with warning-information (about how the third-party can access the user's profile) as well as a button at the button at the bottom of the screen that the user must click to allow such access (see attachment labeled "Third-Party Application Settings.jpg"). Not only does the user have control over what third-party apps it allows to access its profile, but can also remove access privileges from any third-party it has granted access (see attachment labeled "Third-Party Application Settings.jpg"). Facebook also provides simple, accessible tools to control what information is visible to the public. The first is the Privacy Settings page, which gives very simple means to control who sees the user's profile. The second in the Public View tool, which can be accessed from the user's profile page (see attachment labled" Privacy Settings and Public View Tool.jpg").
Facebook has given its users numerous, effective means to control account security and privacy. It has in no way "deceived" its users. Rather, there are many who use this service and do not actually take the time to learn basic security measures. Facebook should not be punished for users' ignorance, especially given that it has given its users simple, effective means to protect themselves. Please do not prosecute Facebook, an American entrepreneurial start-up that has grown to be the world-wide, billion-dollar juggernaut it is (doing so without charging its users one penny). It is a powerful social tool (sometimes one of the only tools) that allows people to tell the rest of the world their story, which allows them to spread their perspectives and their witness to the events around them, whether it be in Los Angeles, California, Bangkok, Thailand or Tehran, Iran. Thank you for allowing public-comment on these proceedings.