It’s an accepted reality for the most part. If we want to use an app or website, we’ve gotten used to the idea that it means it will be tracking our use. But what if we don’t even use that app or website? Should Facebook and others be able to track non-users?
That’s right. Even if you’ve avoided using Facebook either because you have no desire to share your personal life with others or even if you decided long ago that you didn’t want to be tracked, the social network is still tracking you.
Facebook admitted this recently when they said they were “expanding Audience Network so publishers and developers can show better ads to everyone – including those who don’t use or aren’t connected to Facebook.”
Instead of just targeting ads at the users of Facebook, they’re going beyond that and tracking what you do in the online space in order to do so. Outside of Google, it’s the second largest mobile ad network.
And that’s exactly what happens every time you hit “Like,” and you expect that. But it’s also taking that same type of data from the websites you visit and the ads you click and applying that as well to create ads that will target your specific use of the Internet.
But is this right? Should a social network you don’t even use be able to track your activity online? It’s bad enough that Google does it, but what about a social network?