Social Media Monitoring, Is Facebook Going Too Far?


I read recently that the social media giant Facebook applied for a patent that would allow them to spy on users by accessing their cameras.

To read the full article click here .

What is the reason Facebook would implement technology to spy on its users?  To advertise by monitoring user’s reactions, facial expressions, and attentiveness when being shown content.


In 1949 George Orwell published the classic novel 1984.  In 1984 every move you make is being watched by Big Brother.  The oppressive group has cameras and audio recording everywhere in private and in public.  The most haunting part about this novel for me was that the people invited this technology into their homes.  After all, if you’re not doing anything wrong what is there to worry about?

History Repeats Itself

As if Facebook wanting to spy on us like Big Brother wasn’t enough, this is not the first time the company has manipulated its users.  In 2014 Facebook conducted an experiment on its users.  They were barraged with messages in their news feeds that were all positive or all negative.  Facebook wanted to see if content had an effect on people’s emotions.  The company also put out an application that had bugs, errors, and was difficult to use.  They did this on purpose to measure user loyalty.  Facebook wanted to see at what point you would give up and uninstall the app. has more information on these experiments.

A Waste of Resources

What I find the most infuriating about the whole situation is Facebook’s recent statement against the proposed hate crime law in Germany.  The law would fine social media platforms that do not delete hate speech and other illegal activities.  Facebook says “The legislative state cannot pass on its own shortcomings and responsibilities to private companies”

DW has more information here .

If Facebook doesn’t want to take the time to delete hateful and straight up illegal activity on their website, then they shouldn’t be wasting their resources to monitor people’s facial expressions for petty causes like advertising.

In conclusion, I can only hope that if Facebook is allowed to access people’s cameras it will have a negative impact on their usership.  I will leave you with one more thought.  If Facebook’s creator Mark Zuckerberg uses a piece of tape to cover his camera while he is online, why would you still trust them?

Facebook: Social Media Monitoring, Is Facebook Going Too Far?

Twitter: Social Media Monitoring Goes Too Far.



4 thoughts on “Social Media Monitoring, Is Facebook Going Too Far?

  1. Hi Carl –

    Interesting reading and great supporting links to give the user more info, I found myself very intrigued when reading this blog post and the flow of your blog was quite logical and made for an easy read!
    I wasn’t aware of the Facebook tests that were run – to test for loyalty of their users, very interesting information – did you know that already or come across this in your research?
    I agree with you that I DON’T like the idea of Facebook accessing our cameras, I would hope that at the very least this would have to be something that you would authorize, but I think sometimes people skim through the fine print and might authorize this without even being aware they had done so.
    Great blog post!


  2. Hi Carl!

    This is scary stuff, but nonetheless a great read. I agree with @katielynnehunter. The flow of your blog made it easy to read.

    If I’m not mistaken, Google is allowed to do this as well. When you sign up for a gmail account, you are giving them permission to the content of your emails for marketing purposes.

    There is certainly some privacy issues when it comes to Facebook accessing our cameras. Would certainly make me think twice about using their product.


  3. Hi Carl,

    To answer your question, I definitely do not trust them. I’ve always been worried about privacy on these sites and I think they are definitely going too far. There must be other ways out there for them to get the information they want. Great post!


  4. Hi Carl,

    Very interesting read, it’s a big thing that a lot of people don’t realize the power of some social media platforms. But in the end it’s all about business and money. There is a whole lot of bad things that should be banned from Facebook, for example, but it’s too many resources to research and pass a new law for these companies.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s