Larry Brauner

A shorter article than the past one.

Privacy and spam concerns continue to induce Facebook and Ning to make changes that hurt marketers. Facebook, for example, will end network affiliations, while Ning has already disabled the sharing of any content across participating sites.

Good-Bye Facebook Networks

Facebook members now use school, city of company network affiliations to control access to their personal content.

Since network affiliation is less relevant than it had been at the network’s conception, and since¬† the display of network affiliation can jeopardize members’ privacy and security, Facebook is replacing affiliation-based permissions with a friendship-based alternative.

This solution better protects Facebook members. :-)

However, it also takes away an important targeting mechanism from honest business users wishing to find people in the regions where they operate. :-(

Thanks Ning for Duplicate Messages

If you and I are friends at several Ning sites, I probably send you duplicate messages. Since I can no longer share content across sites, I send the same information from several sites, and you receive that information multiple times. I try to minimize duplication but haven’t yet eliminated it.

Ning has made it less convenient for spammers. :-)

However, if a spammer is motivated enough, you’ll now receive their spam several times instead of once. :-(

Good-News Bad-News

The good news is that social networking sites will continue their efforts to safeguard the privacy and security of members and to create an enjoyable networking experience… great when we have on our networking hats.

The bad news is that more safeguards can mean more limited access to members, and when we have on our marketing hats… not so great!

What are your thoughts on this hot topic?

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15 Responses to “Social Network Privacy Hampers Marketers”

  1. Steve on December 7th, 2009 12:34 am

    I am personally glad that they are making the networks more personal and protecting privacy. Even though it may reduce the potential reach, I would rather build deeper relationships with my current network, and branch out from there.

  2. Larry Brauner on December 7th, 2009 12:42 am

    I’m glad too Steve… when I have on my networking hat. As a marketer, I just need to be a little more creative. That’s where the diversification I spoke about really helps.

  3. Cheryl H on December 7th, 2009 10:14 am

    I’m looking forward to the Facebook changes. Yes from a marketing perspective it is going to make for more of a challenge, but I feel that will just separate the honest business people willing to work hard from the spammers.

    On a side note I’m looking forward to the broadcast Wednesday night.

  4. Larry Brauner on December 7th, 2009 10:25 am

    You make a good point Cheryl. The suspect, however, that the thieves and the hardened spammers are up to the challenge too.

    Thank you for your friendship and support.

  5. The Hawg! on December 7th, 2009 12:42 pm

    Not too hot on the Facebook changes. My company has used the “network” setup very effectively, and I hope we’ll not have to alter our approach to it overly much because of the switch.

  6. Debbie Morgan on December 7th, 2009 1:38 pm

    Hi Larry,

    It sounds like it will make social marketing a bit more challenging but better for everyone in the long run. Nobody likes spam so cutting down on it will probably encourage more people to feel safer joining the social sites. Once the marketing challenges are figured out, the new members will be there for those of us using the site for marketing purposes. Thanks, Larry.


  7. Dr. Dave Hale on December 7th, 2009 3:19 pm

    A little change will do us good, as my Dad always told me growing up. Anytime changes are made that will result in a positive change is always good.

    Dr. Dave Hale
    The Internet Marketing Professor

  8. Larry Brauner on December 7th, 2009 3:32 pm


    There’s no shortage of change at social networking sites. Let’s hope that most of it is good.

  9. Market Segmentation on December 7th, 2009 5:23 pm

    Hi Larry,

    That’s what hard about using social networks effectively. They keep changing the rules. I know it’s to stop spammers, but I agree that legitimate marketers suffer the consequences.

    So an effective social networking plan yesterday isn’t necessarily effective today and tomorrow. It’s lots of work of keep up.


    Linda P. Morton

  10. Larry Brauner on December 7th, 2009 6:10 pm

    Hi Linda,

    One really good thing about the changes is that they give me something to write about. ;-)

  11. Jake Jacob on December 8th, 2009 2:37 am

    I guess the only constant in this crazzzzy internet world is change. I try to keep up with as much of it as possible on Mashable, but it’s tough when you are busy. Happy Holidays to all.

    Jake Jacob

  12. Eric on December 8th, 2009 12:37 pm

    As a founder a social networking site soon to launch for the college student and alumni market, I sit on both sides of the fence. My site FreezeCrowd will be for college students, yet I have a different vision than what the other sites have. I think that, it’s important that any social site follows its vision. I believe privacy is important to users, but you cannot blame a website for not being perfect with privacy this day in age. As the world becomes more open, people will share information, and information will become network based on different parameters. On the reality of things, your network in real life is always changing if you move locations. Networks based on location are powerful, but people need to realize that location is not the only networking phenomenon. The quintessential social networking site will know a few things: Who you are, What you like, Where you are, When you do things, Why you do things. The reality is, no social networking site is perfect, no mater what size the network is. At the end of the day, all the networks online are used as tools, and what matters most is how you use them, and how they can help you accomplish your goals and dreams in life. There’s always more than one way to get somewhere, but if you have a vision, you will make things happen.

    Eric Leebow
    Founder and CEO

  13. James Avory on December 16th, 2009 8:03 am

    I think that nevertheless the problems with spam and security on big social networking sites there is a far more dangerous problem combined with them. Facebook or Twitter are not guarding our personal data too much and I’m afraid that soon we could find our names in some places we never heard about.

  14. Taylor Reid on May 5th, 2010 7:40 am

    I also promote some of my affiliate links on Facebook by making Facebook fan pages and also by advertising on Facebook.

  15. Emilia Coutee on April 13th, 2012 9:28 pm

    When joining social networking sites, it is very important to take care of your privacy. Do not put all details about you.

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