Facebook: An Orwellian Surveillance Machine

January 24, 2019

Editor: Karl Marx declared that religion is the opiate of the masses; our modern capitalists may have invented a better one, Facebook. Facebook is the world’s most popular social network with more than 200 million users in the United States and more than 2.27 billion worldwide. Facebook has consistently broken promises about safeguarding its users’ privacy or protecting them from manipulation by malign forces. The addition of the “like” button in 2009 revolutionized the company’s ability to gather personal data information about your preferences that can be sold. The significant danger with giving out personal data is that you’re opening yourself up to be a target of manipulation. Facebook is an Orwellian surveillance machine. It records, tracks, and stores every single thing you do. For those who buy or otherwise access this information it provides a very comprehensive picture of the individual in question. By partnering with data-brokering companies, Facebook has access to an incredible amount of data that has nothing to do with what you post on line. They have information on your credit card transactions, where you live, where you shop, how your family is spending its time, where you work, what you eat, read, listen to, and much more. Information is also being collected about all other websites you’re perusing, outside of Facebook’s platform. This allows Facebook to target specific groups of users to sell their ads. In order for Facebook’s business model to work it has to remain a surveillance machine. In short, it’s the ultimate advertising tool ever created. The price? Your privacy. The U.S. has no laws governing technologies which utilize the kinds of data collection done by Facebook. My advice is to engage in real time, face-to-face relationships that are full and meaningful that will enrich your life the way God intended. Bill Sarnak HARDING

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