Facebook is doing some creepy stuff

I am a fairly active Facebook user. Yesterday I got a friend suggestion that really creeped me out. Facebook was suggesting that I friend my deceased mother.

Facebook’s suggestion was creepy not because my mother has passed away. It was creepy because the way that Facebook reached that conclusion is pretty damn invasive. You see, my mother remaried and we don’t share the same last name. We don’t share any common friends. We don’t live in the same part of the country. And I never imported my contacts from Yahoo or any other system into Facebook. 

My guess is that Facebook is doing some pretty invasive stuff to determine the linkage between my mother’s name and mine. Perhaps they are examining my email stream.  Maybe they built a web crawler to  look at public documents or announcements in which both of our names appear (there have not been many of those, like my wedding announcement and of course her obituary).

However they are doing it, I don’t want them doing it. I didn’t import my contacts into Facebook by choice. I didn’t ask them to find my friends, my future friends, or my dead mother, and I don’t want them to.

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One Response to Facebook is doing some creepy stuff

  1. Reem says:

    Hi, Rob,
    That is pretty creepy. I have experienced a somewhat similar situation with LinkedIn. My hypothesis so far is that these sites track people’s searches. If someone searched for you and for your mother, they might assume you and your mother know each other & figure it’s worth a suggestion.
    I hope this is the case, because the other scenario is just way too invasive.
    Reem

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