Saturday, June 19, 2021

Facebook Dating; I say don't

Wacky Tech

FINDING your next romance might just become easier for you and you won’t even have to switch to another platform or service. Why? Because Facebook will help you find that elusive date.

About three days ago, according to a report by Techcrunch, Facebook will start a "country-wide test in Colombia.” After that test and if successful, I’m pretty sure it will start rolling out to other countries that Facebook has a presence in. And because the Philippines is very much a Facebook-using country, I don’t think we’d be far down the list of countries where that service will start rolling out or, at least, be tested.

How it works I’d assume is to leverage and use everything Facebook knows about you ever since you’ve signed up on the platform. Yes, everything. The pages you liked, the posts you shared, the comments you posted, the photos you’re tagged on, the places you’ve checked into, the videos you watched and those are just what I can think of while I am typing this. And those are just data points that you have consciously acted to do. I have a feeling that Facebook will most likely also use your location history if your location services for the Facebook app is enabled ever since. What is that, you ask? Well, that’s basically the list of every location you’ve brought your phone or device with you. That’s actually how Facebook knows what restaurant to recommend to you when you’re somewhere. And you thought Facebook was smart, right? Yes and no. But that’s for another story.

Anyway, Facebook’s Dating service. According to that Techcrunch report I linked above, here’s how it will go:

They’ll opt in, verify their city using their phone’s location services, and decide whether to add details like a free-form bio, workplace, education, religion, height, and if they have children. Facebook offers non-binary genders and sexual orientations. To fill out their profile, they’ll choose up to a dozen photos they upload, are tagged in, previously posted to Facebook, or cross-posted from Instagram, as well as answer up to 20 questions about their personality such as “What does your perfect day look like?” or “What song always makes you sing along? How loud?”

Users can select to filter their matches by distance (up to a maximum radius of 100 kilometers), if they have children, religion, height, and age. They may then browse through the homescreen’s Suggested matches list, or they can choose to "Unlock" Events and Groups they’re part of to see people from those who’ve done the same. Anyone you’ve blocked on Facebook won’t show up, though unfriended exs might. To see the next person, they either have to say they’re not interested, or choose a photo or question from the person’s profile and send them a message related to it (or at least they’re supposed to), and afterwards the sender can’t see the recipient any more.

The text and emoji-only messages go through a special Facebook Dating chat section, not Messenger, and land in the recipient’s Interested tab with no read receipts. If they reply, the chat moves to both people’s Conversations tab. From there they can decide to connect elsewhere online or meet up in person.

But should you opt in? Personally, I’d stay away from it like a plague.

That’s just another way for Facebook to take more data from you, about you and then in some for or another, another Cambridge Analytica happens again. And that’s pretty scary. What’s scary? Your data being shipped off or sold to or stolen by another entity and then used for something else other than what you originally agreed on with Facebook. Read that linked article on the Cambridge Analytica brouhaha to know more. In fact, I’d go as far as saying right now, in the interest of data privacy and security, that you start "deleting” yourself from Facebook today.

Anyway, back to it.

I agree with another Techcrunch author and what she wrote about why you not trust Facebook as your cupid.

In a manner of speaking, Facebook’s not to be trusted with more of your data.


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