How Facebook Figures Out Everyone You've Ever Met

> A man who years ago donated sperm to a couple, secretly, so they could have a child—only to have Facebook recommend the child as a person he should know. He still knows the couple but is not friends with them on Facebook.

The article's three years old, but still very relevant. It is getting me to think about contact management software, and how to achieve more fine-tuned control.

@josias from the comments:

"Facebook is just the NSA with a profit motive."

@Coffee Haha. Exactly. Maybe I should turn on JavaScript to read the comments more often. :)

@Coffee Really? Now that's peculiar. Lynx displays more text than Firefox with JavaScript disabled. 😆

I thought it was out of character for you to be using JavaScript.

@josias They give you one comment up front, and the rest does need to be loaded by Javascript ("See all replies").

@josias Anyway, it's a public secret that I still use Firefox. Lynx is just my first go-to, and acts as a fast heuristic to select for the writers who care* about their readers.

If the content is interesting and seems to rely on images a lot, I'll happily upgrade to Firefox, Javascript and all.

(Still looking for a way to fully move away from Firefox, as Lynx can only be a partial replacement.)

* as fellow human beings, not as food

@Coffee I sometimes use w3m. It's just convenient to open a link Firefox when I already have it open for websites which require a "modern" browser.

@josias I have w3m, lynx, links and elinks installed, but for some reason I keep coming back to Lynx. Might be because of how it lays out text. It's a bit like an always-on version of Firefox's reader mode.

I stopped doing the "keep Firefox open with many tabs" thing. Just open it, do my business, and quit.

No, I'm not holy, I just replaced Firefox tabs with terminal tabs, with a Lynx open in each one. 😉

@josias So probably the fact that I left FB (and its tentacles IG, Messenger, etc.) didn't help at all with privacy concerns. I'd imagine google is probably at least that bad if not worse - and even harder to disentangle oneself from. I've always known that once we connect with the GOB (Great Online Beast - aka Internet) the idea of privacy is an illusion. But never could have imagined this. Good read, thanks!

@josias "I asked if Facebook would consider sharing shadow profile information with its users, much like it accidentally shared it with their friends four years ago. Facebook says it can’t because it would be a privacy violation of those who gave the information."

To my knowledge, uploading other people's contact information has only ever been lawful under the assumption that said people consented to this. Conversely, you cannot make it a privacy issue.

@ulrichkelber ?

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