For Zuckerberg, privacy views aren’t consistent

October 26, 2016 — by Rahul Vadlakonda

Zuckerberg reduces user privacy on Facebook, yet seeks to protect his own.

Mark Zuckerberg is a hypocrite.

Put under the spotlight after many years of both success and controversy, the Facebook CEO hoped to maintain what was left of his privacy and recently proposed a plan to the city of Palo Alto. The plan would make four houses on his combined property into a house complex, where friends and family could stay. According to Business Insider, Zuckerberg took this initiative when he heard of a developer who, seeing a marketing opportunity, planned to buy one of the homes in Zuckerberg’s neighborhood.


Zuckerberg made his billions by creating a website that in so many ways tries to connect people, and mine user data. It’s ironic that while he created and benefits from a company that deals in effectively reducing privacy, Zuckerberg is acutely concerned with protecting his own.

No matter how much the users try to keep their privacy, Facebook has taken countless measures to continue exposing them to the public, making sure that accurate information about users is still shown on their page.

According to Forbes, Facebook takes users’ location as another way to suggest friends for them.

Facebook also took away the option of hiding yourself as a search result whenever people search your name. It also brought into effect the “real-name policy,” which prohibits the use of symbols, numbers, unusual capitalization, repeating characters, characters from multiple languages and many more, in a user’s name. The option to use such symbols would have protected the user's identity by letting them change a viewer’s perception about them.

But this should make people conscientious to know about what they are signing up for. They should know the potential effects that it will have on their privacy; how it will tap them on the shoulder when they least expect it.

According to the Mercury News, the Palo Alto Architectural Review board voted 3-1 against this proposal and recommended the city’s planning director Hillary Gitelman reject the proposal. Zuckerberg’s planned project would have formed a “compound,” which would lower the city’s housing stock, violating the city’s zoning codes and laws for land use.

Like so many other rich and famous people, Zuckerberg is trying to have it both ways and must realize the foolishness of his quest for personal privacy — a privacy his company has so often sought to deny its customers. Palo Alto should give him no special treatment and reject the idea of his family compound.

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