If the data affair on Facebook is too stupid for you, you can delete your profile with a few clicks. There are alternatives – but can they replace the largest network in the world?
Dhe data affair on Facebook keeps the world in suspense. On several fronts, Mark Zuckerberg is trying to limit the damage: He has to appease the legislature, otherwise Facebook threatens to regulate it or even to break it up. It is important to convince advertisers that they do not have to pay for the placement of ads on the platform with a loss of reputation. The largest group that Facebook has to pacify, however, are the approximately 2.1 billion users of the social network. Zuckerberg has to convince them that their data is safe on Facebook.
But for some users it is enough. Because the current misuse of data is by no means the first. For years, the world’s largest social network has been accused of doing too little for the privacy of its members. Annoyed Facebook users are now venting their anger under the hashtag #DeleteFacebook – and calling for a boycott. There are also some prominent names among them: Tesla visionary Elon Musk, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak and even Brian Acton, one of the founders of the WhatsApp news service. The instant messaging service has been part of the Facebook empire since 2014.
The temptation is great to deprive Facebook of power over your personal information with a few clicks. But what then? Life in the digital age is hardly imaginable without social networking. One thing is clear: deleting your Facebook profile is not a panacea for internet privacy. Those who set foot in the network these days inevitably leave digital footprints behind. However, if you don’t want to leave them in Zuckerberg’s front yard, there are a few alternatives that are worth a look.
1. The all-rounder
Google Plus is the second largest social network behind Facebook and comes with many similar functions, such as a news feed and a photo area. It is certainly also practical that the Google Plus profile is connected to all other Google products and thus combines many services. With around three billion registered users, Google Plus actually has a larger community than Facebook. However, the number applies to all Google accounts, including Gmail. Only around four to six million people actively use the platform. In the meantime, Google Plus is considered to have failed as a social network because it could not prevail against Facebook. Will it get a second chance now?
Another social network with a similar functional range to Facebook is Diaspora. The open source project scores with data security and is also completely free of advertising. The decentralized structure of the platform ensures that no single provider can collect the personal information of the members. Diaspora offers functions such as status reports, hashtags and chats, but the members must have a certain technical know-how in order to set up a personal server. Another disadvantage: with only 50,000 active users in the past six months, a diaspora can hardly be called a network – according to its name, it is more of a small, scattered community.
2. News Feed