Facebook: What do they do with your data?


“Due to the fact that Facebook has chosen to involve software that will allow the theft of my personal information, I state: at this date of January 4, 2015, in response to the new guidelines of Facebook, pursuant to articles L.111, 112 and 113 of the code of intellectual property, I declare that my rights are attached to all my personal data drawings, paintings, photos, video, texts etc. published on my profile and my page. For commercial use of the foregoing my written consent is required at all times.”
For those of you who have seen or have posted this message, or a variation of this on your Facebook wall, in essence, it doesn’t work. At all. To think that you’ll be protected with a simple Facebook post is just bogus – the law doesn’t work that way.
The first problem with this supposed legal rights claim is that Facebook isn’t claiming the copyright to the personal information, photos, videos, and other media that you post. According to snopes.com, “Facebook users cannot retroactively negate any of the privacy or copyright terms they agreed to when they signed up for their accounts, nor can they unilaterally alter or contradict any new privacy or copyright terms instituted by Facebook, simply by posting a contrary legal notice on their Facebook walls.”
Basically, the moment you created your Facebook account and pressed the “create” button, you’ve agreed to the conditions that Facebook set forth already. In addition, they’re not allowed to change their side of the contract, unless they tell you. The only way an user can opt out of the terms is to not use Facebook.
However, this does raise an interesting question about user rights: what does Facebook exactly do to your property?
In essence, what they work with the most are the ads that people click when they’re browsing their news feeds. Time magazine says that “Data teams use advertisement targeting tests to find out what ads users prefer to click on, and reshuffle users’ News Feeds to see which format users engage with best. Facebook does that kind of research a lot.”
Facebook can’t really do anything with the stuff you post, but it can sell the data it receives from the ads you click. Watch out for those pesky ads!