The Tomato

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Stunt videos needed to keep ownership of user content

Photo: CC-Ed  Gregory, Edits by Kim Wiens

This week Facebook announced its decision to collect user photos, videos and information beginning early next year to steal users data for their own use. 

This move has lead to a high volume of legal declarations on Facebook feeds, in what appears to be a widespread attempt to ensure drunken selfies and overly emotional statuses never see the light of day.  The most popular of these preemptive posts contains simply a slew of random numbers and legal jargon. 

This new policy is laid out in a statement issued by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

“Those who want to retain their privacy settings on Facebook have to post a video showing us why they are essential to the planet. We’ll accept anything from athletic abilities, academic skills, or any creative works,” said Zuckerberg. “Post a ten minute long video so we make a copy of you, er, so we can better understand our users.”

Zuckerberg went on to say that anyone who did not post a video or did not show enough talent in it “would not have any legal protection,” and that all of their private information would be “disclosed, copied, and distributed without warning.”

“Facebook has the power to decide who can and cannot use their platform,” said Zuckerberg. “People who can’t tell the difference between an actual privacy change and an Internet joke shouldn’t be on Facebook.”

Thousands of students at the U of O are contemplating ignoring the new rules and seeing what happens.

“I don’t have any special skills,” said second-year English literature student Chris Taylor. “I can write scripts and understand Shakespeare, but that is apparently not enough. I guess I’ll just have to run the risk and keep using Facebook.”

Some students are deleting their Facebook accounts altogether, while others are taking action and performing whatever wacky stunts they can think up in order to meet the talent mark. Police have already noticed a spike in accidents that they believe is linked to the production of these dangerous videos. The new laws take effect Jan. 1, 2016 and will be applied to all Facebook accounts.

An open-house information session will take place on Oct. 31 in FSS 2012 outlining the differences between rules, information rights and online hoaxes, for those still needing some clarification on the matter.  Whether this is an actual privacy scandal or just a cruel joke by Facebook staff remains to be seen.