Facebook’s (Creepy) Bid For Your Homepage

Most browsers have a variation on the theme of a home page, which automagically loads your favourite web page when you start the browser or open a new browser window or tab.

A lot of web sites try to capitalise on this, offering earnest entreaties to “make me your home page” … “no make me your home page” … “no, choose me for your home page, I have so much personalised content”.

They’re needy and somewhat neurotic entities these web sites, it’s not like I can have all of them as my home page.

Most of them personalise their content for you, based on a registration setting or some other insight, to give you what they think is the information your looking for.

This is not creepy.

A large amount of web sites are advertising supported and serve up ads which, again, are personalised, either from a demographic, behavioural or geographic point of view (sometimes it’s just from plain old fashioned key word matching with often hilarious results).

This is still not creepy.

But then this morning Facebook told me it wants to be my home page.

We've noticed you use Facebook regularly ... That's Creepy

Like most people I’ve evolved a filtering mechanism which understands why I’m being asked and which either ignores such pleas or uses the minimal amount of effort and mouse clicks to convey the message “buzz off, you’re not going to be my homepage and don’t bug me again“. I’m politely paraphrasing here you understand.

But when Facebook offers to be my home page because, and I’m quoting here, it’s noticed I use Facebook regularly … that smacks of Big Brother and is most definitely creepy, whichever way I look at it.

Written and posted from home (51.427051, -0.333344)

2 Comments

  • Very creepy–as in “Hey User, come here often?” Ew. Hadn’t seen that feature yet–thanks for posting that.

    The EFF.org has been posting regularly about FB. They’ve had to increase their frequency to keep countering all the new “features” that FB has been releasing. Its like “Spy vs Spy.” I believe the word is “nefarious.”

    I have my own idea about FB–Just as MySpace and Friendster were in their day, Facebook is a way for people to self-identify and have a “personal presence” on the internet, without all that pesky domain registering and hosting. Its a sub-web system. Think that FB finally realized that and is trying to exploit it.

    Shudder.

  • So, to paraphrase …. Facebook is the new Geocities?

    Careful now Mr Zuckerberg, look what happened to Geocities.