If you want control, you need to own.
I enjoy facebook and use it everyday. Sure it’s a little bit of an addiction but I don’t care – it’s free right? – WRONG – facebook is the furthest thing from free. While facebook may not charge a fee for it’s use, they derive far more value from my participation than I do from their platform. Like most facebook users I open my life to facebook populating the site with information – friends, interests, photographs, hobbies, hopes, dreams, wisdom, fears…….the list is endless. Who is all of this information relevant to?
The data that we all give to facebook is an advertisers dream – we give it for free without even being asked. Sure we can argue over who owns the content and what kind of privacy we can maintain but get real – we are giving it all away and facebook is eating it up.
Recently facebook made another change that has many fired up. Facebook allows businesses large and small to develop ‘pages’ where they can keep in contact with customers that ‘like’ the page. In fact, for small businesses, a cottage industry has developed where those with the knowledge develop ‘custom pages’ for others – for a fee of course. Small business owners can point to their ‘custom page’ and feel proud that they are just a little ahead of the curve. It seems to be a win for everyone right?
You see, facebook ‘pages’ are only borrowed by their page ‘owners’ – facebook lends them the page. Well facebook has decided that they are going to change the rules. Much of the work that has been done to create these ‘custom pages’ will simply be lost. In the past several days I have been reading the anger and the indignation over this unilateral decision. Why wasn’t the user base consulted? Why make these changes? What about all of the current pages that will be broken?
For the past year I have been typing away on my own self-hosted WordPress blog. More often than not I know that I am writing to please myself. I dream a little dream of having a vast internet audience. One that will hang on my every word and relish my insightful thought. Soon I will be rewarded with an audience that will seek me out and want to do business with me. Wow – what an ego!
With my trusty MacBook Pro, my WordPress blog, and my loyal following of ten, I soldier on. The reality is I am paying a price for defiance. I often wonder if I should just give in to the mega social sites of the world and simply bob along on their massive internet current.
Still I think – If you want control, you need to own.