Tag Archives: Social Marketing

Facebook’s Beacon Flat Out Spyware

3 Dec


Computer Associates is reporting that despite Facebook’s assurances that they will be more transparent in their logging and reporting issues, Facebook’s Beacon will report back to Facebook on members’ activities on third-party sites that participate in Beacon even if the users are logged off from Facebook.

“… investigation reveals that Beacon is more intrusive and stealthy than anyone had imagined. In his note, titled “Facebook’s Misrepresentation of Beacon’s Threat to Privacy: Tracking users who opt out or are not logged in,” he explains that he created an account on Conde Nast’s food site Epicurious.com, a site participating in Beacon, and saved three recipes as favorites. He saved the first recipe while logged in to Facebook, and he opted out of having it broadcast to his friends on Facebook. He saved the second recipe after closing the Facebook window, but without logging off from Epicurious or ending the browser session, and again declined broadcasting it to his friends. Then he logged out of Facebook and saved the third recipe. This time, no Facebook alert appeared asking if he wanted the information displayed to his friends.After checking his network traffic logs, Berteau saw that in all three cases, information about his activities was reported back to Facebook, although not to his friends. That information included where he was on Epicurious, the action he had just taken and his Facebook account name.” 



Advertisers Spend $1 Billion on Word-Of-Mouth Marketing

30 Nov

From Ars Technica:

“PQ Media, which last year brought out some interesting research on TV product placements, recently released a report on word of mouth (WoM) marketing. The goal of WoM is to get consumers talking (to start “buzz” in industry parlance), since research from Keller Fay Group shows that “trusted recommendations” are the single best form of advertising in the US.

80 percent of surveyed consumers trust recommendations offered by friends and family; the remaining 20 percent apparently have friends like my college roommate, who to this day insists that The Net was a fine example of the filmmaker’s art. ”


The only problem is monetization. Advertisers can’t seem to quantify their investements. Now I’m not saying money shouldn’t be spent exploring the possibilities, but a healthy dose of scepticism seems to be in order.

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