Facebook has been in the headlines since their IPO and Mark Zuckerberg’s wedding. Some were quite disappointed with their initial public offering, stating that that ship sailed in 2009 and the 2012 IPO was way too late. Still, it’s quite early to say if Facebook’s IPO was amiss.
Aside from the IPO and Zuck’s wedding, Facebook continues to stir the cauldron making people question the social networking giant’s future.
Facebook and Yahoo! to settle patent dispute
According to a report from AllThingsD, Facebook and Yahoo execs have been hammering their brains in order to end their ongoing patent dispute.
Yahoo filed a lawsuit against Facebook back in March for allegedly infringing 10-20 of their patents which was answered by a countersuit accusing Yahoo of infringing their patents covering display advertising, content personalization and photo sharing, which accounted for almost 80%, or $4 billion of Yahoo!’s revenue last year.
According to unnamed sources, the two are discussing a massive cross-licensing of patents and an “even deeper integration of Facebook into Yahoo and vice versa, which has been a key element of improved engagement of late on Yahoo.”
But here’s the catch, though Facebook may have hinted willingness to purchase some of Yahoo’s patents, they won’t likely shell out a huge amount of cash in order to get their hands on them.
Facebook to give access to kids aged below 13
Zuckerberg wants everyone to have access on Facebook – as in everyone – even kids younger than 13 years old. So what’s the big deal? In reality, there are kids under 13 years old who already have access to the social networking site. I know lots of kids with Facebook accounts, they just tweak their age or the year they born. I know some parents who set up their kid’s Facebook account and they see nothing wrong with it. So again, I ask, what’s the big deal?
Some of us may think that nothing bad will happen to our kids on Facebook, but reality can bite hard for thinking so. Some parents allow their kids on Facebook because of the games, but we all know that games on Facebook allow people to talk with other players, and this is one of the problems. There are loads of predators online just waiting for the right time to pounce on their next victim.
Another thing is the privacy issue. Most of us don’t even read the notices when we are about to access an app on Facebook, but are quick to complain that a certain app keeps posting stuff on the Timeline. And that also happens to kids. They see adults just clicking the okay or allow button and they do the same–we’re teaching kids to ignore safety precautions.
So Facebook is looking into ways of giving access to kids without compromising their security and without being hunted by the Federal Trade Commission pending the review of the implementation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998, which controls the information acquired from children using the web.
“Recent reports have highlighted just how difficult it is to enforce age restrictions on the Internet, especially when parents want their children to access online content and services,” Facebook said in response to questions about the new technology. “We are in continuous dialogue with stakeholders, regulators and other policy makers about how best to help parents keep their kids safe in an evolving online environment.”
James Styer, chief executive of Common Sense Media, a child-advocacy group based in San Francisco, is against Facebook’s decision, stating that the company should be focusing more on educating parents and their kids how the site is not a place meant for children.
Since privacy is such a big deal, Facebook is giving their users a chance to vote on this issue via the Facebook Site Governance Vote page.
Facebookers will have a say on the following issues:
Statement of Rights and Responsibilities
- Explanation of Changes to the SRR
- Revised SRR – April 20, 2012 (This document reflects revisions made in response to comments from users received during the comment period.)
Data Use Policy
Existing Documents that Currently Govern Facebook Site
According to an official post on Facebook’s newsroom, “Voting will be facilitated by an application developed on Facebook Platform by Wildfire, and an independent auditor will examine the vote tabulation to further ensure accurate results.”
Voting started last June 1 and will end on June 8, 2012. Before you vote, read the old and revised versions carefully. Make sure you understand what you are reading. Do not vote blindly.