Facebook Owns Us All

Your Facebook photos, favorite books and movies, status updates—all are distinctly yours. But believe it or not, they’re Facebook’s property. Until recently, when you shut down your profile on Facebook, you’d retain the rights to all your information there. But a new Facebook privacy clause allows Zuckerberg & Co. to hang on to—and do anything they want with—your personal information. Facebook activists have bemoaned this adjustment to the Terms of Service, and Zuckerberg has attempted to re-democratize the process. But the decision will soon be brought to a user vote after April 20, when users will be invited to decide the site’s privacy terms. But the vote will only become Facebook law if over 30 percent of users—60 million people—cast their virtual ballots. Writes New York magazine’s Vanessa Grigoriadis: “This is a crucial moment for Facebook, and a delicate one, because We, the users, are what Facebook is selling."