The Facebook face-off | AccountingWEB

The Facebook face-off

One of the most hotly debated issues of the year so far is whether staff should have access to social networking sites in the workplace.


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dahowlett's picture

Social networking matters at multiple levels

dahowlett | | Permalink

"I don't really see the argument that Facebook is used any more or less for business networking than any other tool," says AccountingWEB member Fred Hoad. "Therefore, whatever the policy on other tools could easily apply here."

I'd be very careful with that. I'm currently working on a very large social networking project where the implications go in many different directions.

Having said that, one argument missed here is that Facebook is a 'data roach motel' - what goes in stays in and is hard to surface unless you are a developer. Some firms have gotten ingenious on that one.

Ernst & Young use FB for recruitment. As I understand it, they're very keen. Deloitte has a group there as does BADCASS.

The problem firms will face is proliferation of firm related sites. Check the number of KPMG FB groups for example.

However,just like the phone and email before it, this cannot be ignored, neither should it be feared. Those that ban are short sighted and will do their reputations no good at all.

Roach Model ......

Anonymous | | Permalink

How soon will be before we see SN portals controlling access to all SN sites so that one only has to enter standard information once in a single place to have it spawned over all the child SN sites? Also a single portal could span all SN sites and collect relevant events resulting in the fact that you only need to run the portal and not each individual SN site

Anyway, so far as I recall Facebook originally started life as a SN site purely for University students (or invitees) and as such had the implicit credibility associated with Universities which could be the reason for the initial take-up. This illusion of credibility encouraged students to reveal far more personal information that they would normally have done and some have lived to regret it !!

Since then Facebook has opened its doors to all and sundry and caused a number of problems for the original 'trusting' members who were perhaps indiscrete with their postings, believing they were only available for the student population - ergo, was it was originally introduced on the basis of a lie?

Assuming these sites work on trust - what price any future trust when the initial student user base was induced to use Facebook under potentially false pretences ??

Of course the caveat has to be whether one is comfortable with personal data being harvested; furthermore the interest of M$ & Google does little to provide assurances that 'harvesting' is not the ultimate goal

dahowlett's picture

Of course it is

dahowlett | | Permalink


Facebook's motivation, the same as Google and Microsoft is to develop advertising platforms. They hope that by aggregating information about the people visiting them that they will be able to target more specifically rather than the current scattergun approach.

Reality bites - Google has the lock on AdWords and AdSense. They work on the theory that advertising only works contextually (if you use Google Groups you'll see this in action in a pretty smart way already) Google understands that search is the cornerstone for this.

On the trust issue - it's an interesting point but common sense would dictate that you really shouldn't put into the virtual world something you would not do/say in real life.