Facebook A Bigger Thief Than Scoble

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[ Social Media]

Even though Robert Scoble has been readmitted to the walled garden of Facebook and forgiven for his scraping, Facebook commits the same offense against other sites.

The social networking site Facebook has a feature that permits its members to pull in contact information from web-based email systems at Gmail, Yahoo Mail, and Hotmail. The feature helps people discover if those contacts already have a profile on Facebook.

Paul Buchheit wondered on his blog if the useful "Friend Finder" feature should be finding complaints from those email providers instead:

However, Gmail’s Terms of Use seems to prohibit this:
You also agree that you will not use any robot, spider, other automated device, or manual process to monitor or copy any content from the Service.

Facebook can also import contacts from Yahoo and Hotmail. Yahoo TOS says:
You agree not to access the Service by any means other than through the interface that is provided by Yahoo! for use in accessing the Service.

And Hotmail TOS says:
In using the service, you may not:

Use any automated process or service to access and/or use the service (such as a BOT, a spider, periodic caching of information stored by Microsoft, or "meta-searching")

All three services should be banning Facebook’s scripts, judging by those terms of service. Scoble’s actions, through the use of an alpha version of a new Plaxo Pulse feature, did what Facebook does routinely.

Microsoft may not be inclined to block the Facebook bots from Hotmail, due to the existing business relationship between the two companies. Google and Yahoo may not be interested in fighting Facebook on this at the moment, but that could change faster than you can say "Robert Scoble."


Facebook A Bigger Thief Than Scoble
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  • aniesa

    .looking for a friend, stanley lackey aka c-breeze is his name. anybody seen him? let me no

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