The Great Facebook Hoax of 2012 And Why It Shouldn’t Matter

There are moments in time when I want to make like old Willie Shakespeare and shout something like “Friends, Romans and Countrymen: lend me your ears so that I might give you a double dose of common sense.”

Many people I know posted something that looked exactly like this or quite similar:

In response to the new Facebook guidelines I hereby declare that my copyright is attached to all of my personal details, illustrations, comics, paintings, professional photos and videos, etc. (as a result of the Berner Convention).
For commercial use of the above, my written consent is needed at all times!
(Anyone reading this can copy this text and paste it on their Facebook Wall. This will place

them under protection of copyright laws.) By the present communiqué, I notify Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, disseminate, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and/or its contents. The aforementioned prohibited actions also apply to employees, students, agents and/or any staff under Facebook’s direction or control. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of my privacy is punished by law (UCC 1 1-308-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).

Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are recommended to publish a notice like this, or if you prefer, you may copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once, you will be tacitly allowing the use of elements such as your photos as well as the information contained in your profile status updates…

Snopes has a nice write up about this and why it is bunk, but I still want to share my own thought here.

We leave little cyber bread crumbs every time we go online. Any time we decide to post something we take a chance that it will be used by someone in some fashion other than how we intended it to be done.

Sometimes I receive emails/comments from people about posts I have written and I am shocked by what they say because it is clear they have taken my words out of context and or completely misunderstood what I wrote.

In theory I could protect myself by shutting down the blog and never posting again or by writing something that is devoid of passion and personality. While it is true that some things are better left unsaid I choose not to go to the other extreme.

No One is Forcing You To Use Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg isn’t holding a gun to your head. You don’t have to use Facebook so perhaps you’ll understand that these status updates remind me of the guy who goes to a Chinese restaurant and asks if instead of eating Dim Sum they can make him spaghetti and meatballs.

It doesn’t mean you have to accept all of Facebook’s practices or that you can’t lobby for change either. There is a middle ground to all of this, but sometimes I can’t help but wonder.

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