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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Jan. 18, 2013 / 7 Shevat, 5773

With Graph Search, Facebook commoditizes you

By Mark Kellner



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Facebook's January 15, 2013 announcement that it will offer a way to search its "Graph" of information - a galaxy of data points gathered from, well, you and me - has, I believe, significance beyond the surface. Thought the announcement didn't send the firm's stock price soaring that day, I do believe the firm has money on its mind.

Some background: the "Facebook Graph Search" service - which co-founder Mark Zuckerberg said is the "third pillar" of the online community -- is in its early stages. Only "hundreds of thousands" can experience it today, with a controlled test period and eventual launch to follow, the company said. So, for now, most of us just have to take Facebook and its executives at their word for what Graph Search can do, and that it will work.

The idea is simple: want to find friends who like the Washington Nationals? Ask the question via Facebook and you'll find them, with the people "closest" to you in terms of online relationships at the top of the list. Then, you can invite any or all for a game-day party or to join a rotisserie league or whatever.

Now, it's true, you could achieve the same sort of thing by actually, well, talking to people you know in real life, but digitally it's more fun, or so Facebook believes. And we can search for more kinds of things, such as "pictures of Paris" taken by my friends, or "Mexican restaurants in Arlington my friends like."

Facebook can do all this, the firm said, because we gave them the data, the photos, the "likes," and so forth. When you "check in" at a popular spot, Facebook knows, and when you "like" it, that's recorded, too. Users may not think of this; we just imagine ourselves sharing the details of our lives with friends. We do share, but, what happens on Facebook pretty much stays on Facebook.

That said, the company took great pains to emphasize that you can mark items as private, keeping them away from searching eyes. "Everyone on Facebook who isn't blocked by you can search for you, but what they can see in search results about you depends on what's shared with them," the company said on a privacy information page related to Graph Search. "Search results respect your privacy settings, whether it's info you've shared, or posts with tags of you that others have shared."

So, if you keep your Facebook circle very tight, with strict limitations on who can see or contact you, then you have little to worry about. Most of us, however, are rather public in what we share, and therein lies the money angle.

Why? Again, it's the amount of data Facebook has already: "[t]here are already more than a billion people, more than 240 billion photos and more than a trillion connections," product management director Tom Stocky and engineering director Lars Rasmussen said in a post on the firm's "Newsroom" page.

There's gold in them thar data, to borrow a phrase: knowing what you like, what you are looking for and how often you look for it can be a real money-maker for marketers trying to target their products as closely as possible. The scattershot approach of even "niche" broadcast advertising (not everyone who watches the HGTV network, for example, needs a folding cane to help them walk) will be even less interesting now that there's all that information about you on Facebook.

The trick here will be for marketers to make their Facebook pages as friendly as possible: more "likes" means more visibility and entrée into more networks. Looking for a dry cleaner in Laurel, Maryland? The one you'll find, using Graph Search, will be one your friends like, or that their friends like.

In way, this commoditizes us all: we're not just users, we're being, well, used to make money. The Occupy Wall Street crowd may find that distasteful, but it's called capitalism, and it's the implicit bargain we strike when signing up for a social network and its services.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Mark Kellner has reported on technology for industry newspapers and magazines since 1983, and has been the computer columnist for The Washington Times since 1991.Comment by clicking here.

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