Bonum Certa Men Certa

Microsoft Has Your Facebook and Twitter Data, Tightens Relationship With Those Companies

Steve Ballmer as a bird



Summary: The access to data in high traffic sites such as Facebook and Twitter enables Microsoft to suppress opposition and inject its points of view, products, formats, etc.

MICROSOFT is an unpopular company. Its bad reputation is well deserved and earned. About a week ago, people complained in Twitter that Microsoft was harassing them even in their own houses. It was causing a lot of noise and there are other recent incidents we could cite (like trashing/polluting the streets with promotional "MSN" butterflies -- a case in which the local authorities were also called to intervene).



Office drones around Soho's Golden Square have complained to the council about the racket caused by Microsoft's ongoing attempt to attract more users to Hotmail through the medium of dance.


Hotmail is dying, but that's not today's subject.

Back in the old days, controlling the press was easy because the number of channels/newspapers was limited and there was an editorial hierarchy for each publisher. Then came the Internet and blogs. Microsoft has realised that taking down other people's blog posts is something it can manage to do in order to guard a reputation, but keeping track of billions of short messages is nearly impossible. That would be microblogging. So Microsoft signed some deals with Twitter and Twitter's CEO came over to Microsoft a couple of weeks ago. As part of Microsoft's AstroTurfing efforts, its PR department had developed some tools with which to spy on people and observe trends in Twitter. That was a year ago. Microsoft uses Twitter for its AstroTurfing, as we demonstrated in some of the following posts:



Microsoft Nick says that Microsoft has gone further. It developed more tools for use in Twitter:

Microsoft announced the alpha preview of a social-networking initiative, Project Emporia, being developed through its FUSE Labs. The application gives users the ability to browse information on Twitter most relevant to their needs, and refine their experience through a “like/dislike” recommender system. Since its inception in October 2009, FUSE Labs has pursued the development of social connectivity, real-time experiences and rich media software and services.


Another area where Microsoft wants and needs to control minds would be Facebook.

"Facebook Obliterates Rivals in Google List of Top Sites," says one headline from IDG and there are other signs that there is still "mindshare" in that site. To quote Microsoft on "mindshare":

"Mind Control: To control mental output you have to control mental input. Take control of the channels by which developers receive information, then they can only think about the things you tell them. Thus, you control mindshare!"

--Microsoft, internal document [PDF]



Microsoft has already attempted to acquire Facebook. At the moment, Facebook and Microsoft seem to be allies and it's possible that Microsoft will borrow more money and attempt to buy Facebook again.

Zuckerberg already helps Microsoft in many ways (giving them data, Office market share, spreading Silver Lie, etc.) and some days ago we found this new article:

Ballmer on Facebook privacy: Zuckerberg one of 'good guys'



Google and Facebook are the ones grappling with high-profile security and privacy problems these days, but Microsoft has been there before, many times, and the issues were clearly on Steve Ballmer's mind during a talk this past week on the company's Redmond campus.


Of course Microsoft takes Facebook's side. Microsoft too is in the business of profiling people [1, 2, 3]. Facebook has not really changed anything or even apologised since the controversy began. Microsoft supports Facebook's position probably because it continues to receive copies of Facebook's data (the more the merrier -- the same data which made people furious). To quote an article from last week, with emphasis added: "CEO Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook fixing privacy tools"

The latest flap came last month, when Facebook announced new features that send user profile information in bulk to companies such as Microsoft, Yelp and Pandora. That prompted four U.S. senators - led by Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. - to demand Facebook pass along data only if users agree to it.


The original article had the title "Facebook simplifies its privacy controls" (but does not actually resolve the issue).

In the case of Twitter, there is a Bing deal that gives Microsoft the company's whole data feed. These companies share their databases. See this recently-leaked Microsoft handbook to find out how it facilitates compliance with government requests for personal data (snoops).

Comments

Recent Techrights' Posts

Debian Developer at Sirius Was Under the Wrong Impression That Staff Must Check or Should See E-mail All the Time (24/7 Work Attention is an Occupational Health Hazard)
My personal and professional experience with a Debian Developer (DD) at work
Techrights More Productive Than Ever Before
Today we finally crossed the 1,900-page milestone
 
Navalny is Dead, This Week We Might Know if the US Will Kill Assange
Olaf Scholz backs Julian Assange’s battle to avoid US extradition
What Quality and Equality Mean
racial lines
From 91% to 33% or Less: How Microsoft Has Lost Australia
Historically Australia was quite a stronghold for Microsoft
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Monday, March 04, 2024
IRC logs for Monday, March 04, 2024
[Meme] Record EPO 'Productivity'
Patent applications granted
Job Groups 5 and 6 at the European Patent Office (EPO) Another Case of EPO Discrimination
an under-reported (or entirely not covered) backlash from last summer
[Meme] Microsoft Fan: "Microsoft is in a panic from the continued loss of its user base"
Published a couple of weeks ago
Android Has Reached New Highs in Mexico, According to Web-Derived Data (Android Now Almost a Majority of the "Market")
Not far from 50%, i.e. half of the "market"
In defence of Albanian women: Outreachy & Debian favoritism scandal
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 04/03/2024: Old Crisis Looming, UPC Already in Infringement of Article 6 ECHR
Links for the day
The Right to Disconnect (Meme and Very Recent References)
relatively new press
Links 04/03/2024: Techno-Babble in Tech Job Ads and Vision Pro Already Breaking Apart
Links for the day
Europe's Adoption of GNU/Linux, by Country (Now About 6%)
in Switzerland, for instance, adoption of GNU/Linux has been profoundly low
[Meme] 'Debating' People by Subscribing Them to Lots of SPAM
Rebuttal? No, spam.
From Sexual Harassment of Women to Yet More Cybercrimes
They can be prosecuted
Not Only Has Adoption of Windows Vista 11 Flatlined/Plateaued, Now It is Going Down!
Did many people delete Vista 11 and install GNU/Linux instead?
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Sunday, March 03, 2024
IRC logs for Sunday, March 03, 2024
Venezuela: Windows Below 70% (Laptops and Desktops), GNU/Linux Up to 7%
It's a lot higher in Cuba
ICYMI: ZDNet Financially Controlled by Microsoft
a history of censoring SJVN's Microsoft-critical articles
Argentina Joining the 4% 'Club' (GNU/Linux on Desktops and Laptops)
Data as ODF
Transparency Sets Society Free
"Convenient delusions" aren't bliss but temporary relief
[Meme] The EPO, Europe's Second-Largest Institution, Which is Contracting With Belarus
Socialist EPO
The European Patent Office's (EPO) Illegal Ban on Mass Communication Gets in the Way of Democracy
The scientific process (patents apply to science) must allow scrutiny, both from within and from the outside
Links 03/03/2024: Depression in Hong Kong, Sex 'Apps' and STIs
Links for the day
Links Gemini 03/03/2024: NixOS and NextCloud, Back Into Ricing
Links for the day
The Debian family fallacy
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
GNU/Linux Peaking in Europe, Android Measured as Higher or More Prevalent Than Windows
Android topping Windows
For Every Action There's a Reaction
Gates lobbying Modi
Like in Africa, Android Takes Control, Raking in Almost All the 'Chips' in Asia
So Microsoft has no OS majority except in Japan and Russia (and tiny Armenia).
Links 03/03/2024: Goodbye, Navalny (Funeral Reports)
Links for the day
Gemini Links 03/03/2024: A Wild Devlog Appeared and GrapheneOS Ramble
Links for the day
Gemini at 3,800+
total number of known capsules at above 3.8k
Be a Navalny
We salute Mr. Navalny
Mozilla Firefox is Back in ~2% Territories, Jeopardising Its Status as Web Browser to Test/Target/Validate With
Some new stats
[Meme] Russian Standards of Law: The Executive Branch Decides Everything
the president's kangaroo court
Up Next: The Tricky Relationship Between the Administrative Tribunal of the ILO and the European Patent Organisation (EPO)
We've moved from presidents who run a republic by consent to corrupt, unqualified, dictatorial officials who bribe for the seat (buying the votes)
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, March 02, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, March 02, 2024
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
Beware Imposter Sites of Techrights (Not Techrights.com or Techrights.org)
Only trust pages accessed through the domains controlled by us
Italy visa & residence permit: Albanian Outreachy, Wikimedia & Debian tighten control over woman
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock