From our M.C. Escher desk

As the hardtracking staff has noted this past week, Facebook is trying to turn the last vestiges of its Faceocracy into a Zuckocracy.

Specifically, the billion-strong social network wants to terminate the voting power of its members over changes in the site’s privacy policies.

From TechCrunch:

19K+ Commenters Trigger Vote On If Facebook Users Will Lose The Ability To Vote On Privacy Changes

19,000 Facebook users have commented on proposed changes to Facebook’s governing documents, enough to trigger a vote on whether they’ll go into effect. Today the Electronic Privacy Information Center asked Mark Zuckerberg to withdraw the proposal to combine user data from Facebook and Instagram, and eliminate the same right to vote that users will assert in a 7-day period starting soon.

Facebook gave users one week to review the proposal to change its Statement of Rights and Responsibilities and Data Use Policy, and that period ends tomorrow morning around 10am PST. Since more than 7,o00 users have left commented on the changes, exceeding the threshold required to cause a vote, Facebook will set up a one-week voting period in the near future. Last May when Facebook made its last proposal that also received enough comments, Facebook set up a voting period starting two weeks after the comment period ended, meaning this vote could begin around December 11th.

But . . .

If under 30% of the total user base votes, the majority decision will only be taken under advisory, and Facebook can decide whether or not to implement the changes. If over 30%, or 300 million users do vote, the majority decision is binding and Facebook must abide by it.

Raise your hand if you think 300,000,000 Facebook users will vote on this policy change.

Both of you can now lower your hands.


John R. Carroll is media analyst for NPR's Here & Now and senior news analyst for WBUR in Boston. He also writes at Campaign Outsider and It's Good to Live in a Two-Daily Town.
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