The new Facebook Group, called "If Facebook sells to Microsoft, we're leaving", states that: “Microsoft is in talks with Facebook to buy a (small) stake in the company. It is competing against Google, which is also interested. Good on Facebook, which can probably use the cash, and Mark Zuckerberg has earned a multi-billion dollar pat on the back.”
The group says that given “Microsoft's dismal record in protecting the privacy of users, most clearly demonstrated when Hotmail became an overloaded hotbed for spam and security breaches in which Microsoft itself was both negligent and complicit, you can bet that Facebook's sign-on will be replaced with a Live ID (Passport Network) sign-on.”
“Savvy internet users have long vowed never to use any service that requires a Microsoft Passport or Live ID, so here's hoping Google beats Microsoft to the deal. At least Google hasn't (yet) proven that we can't trust it with our private data.”
The group vows that “We, the members of this group, are leaving Facebook the day a deal with Microsoft is signed.”
Well known IT Columnist Ivo Vegter writes “Microsoft has abused the trust of users too often in the past. Here’s hoping Facebook doesn’t become the latest victim.”
Facebook under fire already
Facebook’s privacy and protection of minors has come under fire recently from New York attorney general, Andrew M. Cuomo, whose office has revealed significant defects in the site’s safety controls and the company’s response to complaints.
Cuomo announced that his office is investigating Facebook over representations the company makes about safety measures in place on its website.
In a letter accompanying a subpoena for documents, Cuomo warned the company that a preliminary review conducted by his office revealed significant defects in the site’s safety controls and the company’s response to complaints – deficiencies that stand in contrast to the reassuring statements made on the website and by company officials.
This does not bode well for Facebook in an environment where protecting the rights and privacy of online users is becoming an increasingly sensitive issue.