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Zuckerberg needs to man up

According to The Wall Street Journal, Facebook may be entering into a settlement agreement with the Federal Trade Commission regarding when Facebook subscribers are notified about the changes in the use of their personal information. Facebook will allegedly submit its privacy practices to an outside audit for 20 years.

Mr. Zuckerberg would, according to the article, like to make it easier for subscribers to control how much of their personal data is released to the public.

If I were investing in Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter, and read Mr. Zuckerberg’s last statement about making user control over privacy easier, I’d dump the stock. It’s like a cattle rancher telling his herd, I’ll make it easier for you to escape.

The information that Facebook collects is the raw resource that it converts into ad and other sales. The more information that he can package for sale to advertisers and other data aggregators, the better it is for Facebook and other social media firms. Better meaning greater profit.

By failing to get in front of regulators, all he has done is driven up the cost of acquiring his most important factor input: personal information. A good cattle rancher knows how to head of the herd at the pass.