Yahoo’s Social Circle

Yahoo’s Social Circle | UserSecurity.org: “What’s afoot? These deals are key building blocks in one of Yahoo’s biggest bets. By cultivating online communities — and encouraging people to tap into the collective knowledge of these groups — Yahoo is hoping to change the way people find information online. Known in industry parlance as ‘social search,’ it presents a significant departure from Google’s (GOOG) main approach, which relies on complicated mathematical models to help users find sites.”

We’ve only just begun.

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2 Comments

  1. Elinesca says:

    Thomas,
    I used to be really excited over ideas like this. But the way things are going, with search engine companies giving away sensitive data to the US government (free will or forced, it’s all the same) and the increasingly blurred boundraries of what’s personal data and what’s public information today, I’ve become really worried about hip new “social software” online.

    Social software developers come up with new hip ideas (face book, linked in, meet up, flickr, and more) faster than they are able to think very deeply about the privacy issues that emerge when other parties suddenly become interested in the data their users generate. This discussion really needs to take place! How will that data be used? Most important: What third party can access that info without the user’s permission?

    You say, “we’ve only just begun” – I say “It’s only just began”…

  2. Thomas Hawk says:

    Good point Elinesca, but my own two cents is that impeding the progress of social search because of fear of how our Government will use this info is misplaced. Technology (including smarter search technology) will move forward irrespective of our own privacy issues (especially as the vast majority of internet users are not atuned really to privacy issues at all — certainly naively so).

    And I myself and I’m sure you as well are just as guilty. How many times do you really read that TOU or TOS agreement before you check “I agree.” If you’re like me, never. If we even started reading them we’d most likely find so much objectionable stuff in there and yet we’d still agree anyway as the benefit of using the product or service would outweigh or idealistic vision of the way a TOS ought to be written and what it should and shouldn’t include.