Scoble screwed up, and won't man up about it

Robert Scoble annoys me. I used to enjoy reading his blog, but it has gone to a point where he really thinks he has all the answers and is the smartest blogger on the Net, masked thinly by the occasional self-deprecating comment or whatever.

But now he got booted off of Facebook because he was using an automated script to take all of the contact information from his 5,000 friends and dump it into Plaxo. Are you seeing the irony here? This is the same guy who called out Zuckerberg at Facebook for screwing with people's privacy and not owning up to it. Are you kidding me?

Here's the big news flash, Scoble... I added you as a friend to see what you were up to, not so you could suck out even my name and e-mail and put it in some other system. Why do you think I'd be OK with that?

Facebook should drop you out on your ass. You screwed up. Now admit it, the way you expect everyone else to when they screw up. 


  • I am confused. Why do you not limit access to your Facebook profile if you do not want someone to have access to your email address? You compare what Scoble did to Beacon, but there was no consent with Beacon, like there was with making your profile available to "friends". Is this some weird form of "you can see, but you cannot have"?

  • I don't give him consent to copy my contact information to another service. Which part of that is hard to understand?

  • I don't see where the line is. Is it unethical for me to look up a friend on Facebook, friend him/her, then copy his/her contact information into my mail client? Let me assume you object to _automating_ this process, although the difference is dubious. In particular, in the Facebook terms of service [1]:

    "In addition, you agree not to use the Service or the Site to:"
    "use automated scripts to collect information from or otherwise interact with the Service or the Site;"

    Curiously, the Gmail program policies [2] contains the following tidbit:

    "In addition to (and/or as some examples of) the violations described in Section 3 of the Terms of Use, users may not:"
    "data mining any web property (including Google) to find email addresses"

    Wait a second! Does Facebook violate that policy by allowing the importation of Gmail data?


  • Your mail client isn't another social networking service, now is it?

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