A huge deal has erupted today across social media on the news that Facebook is tracking our comments even if we choose to not post them. While this is technically true; it is also somewhat misleading. The response has been that Facebook are only tracking the time we spend entering (and then not posting) comments; not the contents of them themselves, however this does not necessarily seem to be the case.
Firstly, Why does Facebook want to do this? Facebook tracks a lot of our actions on the site and it does it for one simple reason – to improve the user experience and maximise the amount of advertising they can sell (after all that’s what Facebook is all about). The Facebook user experience has constantly evolved – much to the disapproval of large portions of the user base; who don’t realise there is a time line and plan, Facebook rarely surprises those of us who keep up with the social media industry.
Facebook’s ultimate goal is for every user to share more – this creates more content for users, keeps users on the site longer but most of all it feeds Facebook’s massive database of information ready to market directly at you things that you’re much more likely to be interested in. It’s all about marketing. If Facebook can encourage you to share more or censor less the more they can learn, the more they can sell.
However, looking deeper, it appears that they are getting all the data of our comments regardless of if we post it; and why would they not store that data if they’re getting it – it could be useful.