Oct 072010
 
 October 7, 2010  Online

Danny Sullivan writes:

I missed Facebook’s press conference yesterday about the new Facebook Groups feature that promises that you can share comments, photos and other information more tightly among only people you trust. But I learned about the feature firsthand soon enough, when I found myself added to a group without being asked. And that was worrisome.

Robert Scoble had created the group, invited a number of people, and I was flattered to be included. But Facebook should have asked me first, not just let Robert Scoble or anyone put me into a group without permission.

In fact, I was pretty aghast this had happened. This company has time-and-time-again been accused of trying to push people into being less private, giving them less control. Here, yet again it rolls out a feature that suggests better privacy but gets things wrong. Share with only those you “care about the most” and “feel confident about who sees” what you post, the Facebook blog posts pitch us. But groups go wrong from the beginning, by failing to ask if you want to be included.

It gets worse. As best I can tell, once you’re in a group, you can add anyone else to it. I’m pretty sure the rest of the group members aren’t notified when you do this. The group I’m in started with no one, and now it’s up to over 500 people. I wasn’t told when new people were added, nor is there a notification option for this…

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