Just minutes after Twitter announced a feature to see which of your Facebook friends are on Twitter, Facebook blocked it!
Now, thanks to Techdirt, we can see that this is not just some harmless mistake. Facebook does not want you having access to the data you’ve worked hard to compile. In other words, if you try to access any of your Facebook data via a 3rd-party app then the social network won’t just block you, it may sue you!
We’ve been following the rather bizarre and dangerous lawsuit filed by Facebook against Power.com, an online service that tries to let users aggregate various social networking activity into a single service. All Power.com does is let a willing user have Power.com’s tools log into Facebook and reuse/reformat the data within its own framework. From a user’s perspective, this could be quite useful. From Facebook’s perspective this is both a violation of copyright law and a violation of computer hacking laws. Why? Because Facebook says so. That is, it says so in its terms of service, and it’s arguing that in ignoring the terms of service, Power.com is criminally hacking.
And, that is exactly what Twitter just attempted to do with its new feature!
Two questions are now raised?
1. Will Facebook sue Twitter? Doubtful, but if the company allows Twitter to have this kind of access, does it weaken its case against Power.com?
2. Did you know that you can’t use another service to access what’s really your own data anyway?