Crying On A Saturday Night

We’ve commented time and again about the idiocy of putting personal information on Facebook; it was, after all, only a matter of time before the company started abusing the information it collects. If you won’t listen to us, perhaps another source will convince you…

Next, Facebook said that to access my account I had to pass a security test to prove it was me, on the grounds of protecting my account’s security. These tests, which I attempted to pass for over an hour, were based on inaccurate information and literally impossible to pass. […] All paths ended with access to my Facebook account being restored in exchange for me uploading a government ID. Not alternate forms of ID, but a strict and specific list of government-only identification. […]
I had no less than three people approach me in the following days offering to help me get my account back, special favors style, from the inside. Two were private offers and one was public, from Facebook’s own head of security. I wonder how many other journalists who — like me — have covered Facebook critically in the past and then found themselves in my position, and took the special favor. Facebook, in fact, holds the particular honor of being one of the first entities I broke a story about, then secretly contacted my executive editors with false accusations about my professionalism while working on the story. […]

I have since tried to contact Facebook’s Security, Privacy, Info and Support departments — without any special favors from Facebook employees. I have been told (alarmingly, with with increasing incompetence) that I must upload my ID. Facebook has not demonstrated that it is responsible enough, trustworthy enough, or even skilled enough at the basics of user security procedure to be handed a copy of my ID. […]

Do I want my account back? Only for one reason now. I’m prepared to give up the business reasons I kept a Facebook account, though it is going to make some things very difficult (also not possible) for me as a journalist and author. I want my info, so I know what risks I can expect from the shadow profile Facebook keeps on me and can try to mitigate the risks from rogue employees, powerful authorities, and any absolute bungling fuckup incompetency from Facebook itself, as I witnessed going through its “security questions”.

But now I just want out. I want my account deleted. I want the bullshit, inaccurate pages Facebook creates about me without my consent gone, too, but that’s just a bitter little joke for the ages, isn’t it? Facebook is just going to do whatever the fuck it wants to me. And to you.

Of course, Facebook won’t let me delete my circa-2007 account until I give up my ID.

Crying On A Saturday Night

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