It seems that every week, social networking sites or free services are unilaterally changing their features and exposing people’s private information without prior consent or a chance to fully opt out before changes are implemented. Over on Windows Secrets, Woody Leonhard blogs:
In its rush to take on Facebook and Google Buzz, Microsoft is now collecting and displaying personal information on your Hotmail page — information you may never have wanted to broadcast.
Exactly how it’s mining this information is something of a mystery, but if you use Hotmail or Windows Live, it’s time to review your privacy settings — lest something you said or did comes back to haunt you.
One user signed in to her Hotmail account recently and was greeted with Microsoft’s new, improved social networking splash page, shown in Figure 1.
Unless somebody in Redmond shows a little common sense and restraint, this foray into public — and potentially embarrassing — data mining could bring with it legal liabilities.
Given the murkiness of this new social networking scheme, I’d just as soon opt out — if I could only figure out how.
Read more on Windows Secrets.
Thanks to the reader who sent in this link.