Google Guy Creates Facebook Data Jammer

Written on
Oct 21, 2010 
Gavin Dunaway  |

ignore_smallADOTAS – I’m sure the Google guys are trying to tamper down their schadenfreude over Facebook’s latest privacy imbroglio, or maybe some are sympathetic now that Congress has elbowed its way into the situation.

Though not endorsed by the company (wink), Google engineer Brian Kennish has created Chrome extension “Facebook Disconnect,” which allows browsers to block Facebook from collecting data from the million sites using Facebook Connect. However, they can still access Facebook — the extension works similar to an ad-blocker, removing Facebook Connect boxes and leaving giant white holes on pages. (Kemmish should consider adding pictures of kittens where the Connect boxes were.)

Kennish told TechCrunch he built the extension to “quell his desire to delete his Facebook account.” On the description page, he drops a zinger on Facebook, noting the social network “has a history of leaking personally identifiable information to third parties.”

Even though Kennish claims he came up with this idea all on his own, there’s a certain irony to a Google engineer creating a Facebook data jammer, especially considering the release of the Google alarm several months ago, which rang like a vuvuzela every time Google was collecting data from a third party site. Which was, like, constantly — it was very reminiscent of watching the World Cup this year.

And just like how the vuvuzelas became background noise during the soccer tournament, most browsers pay no mind to Google’s never-ending data binge. Have Facebook’s numerous privacy stumbles amassed it a bad-enough reputation to warrant blocking?

Gavin Dunaway is Editor, U.S. at AdMonsters, a leading trade publication, event producer and service provider for the online advertising industry. Previously, he had been Senior Editor of Adotas, where he arrived after years of ping-ponging around various industry publications. This Washington, D.C. native and George Mason University graduate also enjoys playing electric guitar so loud that the walls shake.

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