A couple of recent articles have recently made it clear that Facebook is tracking your browsing and now its publishing that data to your friends.
Writing at ReadWriteWeb, Richard MacManus notes that one of the new actions introduced by Facebook at this week’s F8 conference is the “read” action. Unlike most of the Facebook actions such as “Like” or “Share”, the Read action doesn’t involve a user clicking on anything… it’s invoked simply by being logged into Facebook and reading an article on a website. As noted by MacManus:
…you’re automatically sending anything you read into your Facebook news feed … As soon as you click through to an article you are deemed to have “read” it and all of your Facebook friends and subscribers will hear about it.
My understanding is that this involves adding new social Facebook applications. No thanks. Internet pioneer Dave Winer’s solution to this problem is that he’ll be logging out of Facebook and that seems like a prudent move. Just like it’s become clear that the population thinks that Farmville and Mafia Wars are content that should be forcefully shared, I won’t be surprised if the masses choose to share everything.
I’m all for transparency, but I don’t know that reading history is something for wide-open broadcast. I’ll continue sharing relevant information on Twitter or via Pinboard or the Interesting Links posts here, but I’m staying out of the new Facebook privacy erosion.