NYU Students Aim to Invent Facebook (Again) - to Bring Back Your Privacy, and the Way it Was

(WIRED) Remember when Facebook really was a private club? In the days before we called anything a “social network?” When “sharing” and “connecting” wasn’t bait for the switch of “monetizing” the stuff and nonsense of our lives? Well, four NYU students do, and they are so nostalgic for those halcyon days way back in 2004 that they have set out to re-invent that wheel — for the good of mankind.

The New York Times reports Wednesday that Ilya Zhitomirskiy, 20; Dan Grippi, 21; Max Salzberg, 22; and Raphael Sofaer, 19, decided that Facebook had become so … Facebook that the world needed a safe online haven, one that could fulfill what had once been the fact and promise of Facebook. A place secure from the Big Bad Wolves who walk right though an open door to cull, scrape, decipher and analyze our timelines, and who see a commercial opportunity every time we go for coffee, buy a movie ticket or change partners.

Even though there is some evidence that only old fogeys are annoyed by Facebook’s latest change in the definition of “private” and “friend,” the NYU Four (as they shall henceforth be known on Epicenter) were surprised to discover that their sense of being fed up was shared by so many others.

“We were shocked,” Grippi told the Times. “For some strange reason, everyone just agreed with this whole privacy thing.”

There’s a practical component to the millennial crowd for keeping some things close to the vest that meshes nicely with a re-emerging visceral need: Students entering the job market have to explain their drunken escapades and make-out sessions and perhaps even drug use (we’re looking at you, Michael Phelps) that hiring managers now will know all about.

The Times story is well worth reading, so here are only a few details: The NYU Four used Kickstarter to raise $10,000 in 39 days. They calculate they’ll need a few months to write the code — and these guys are students at NYU’s elite Courant institute for math brainiacs, so they probably have that right. They call their project “Diaspora,” so you kinda get how serious they are about this.

We’re stoked because we’ve posited that Facebook has gone rogue and have called for just this sort of project. So while it’s way too early to know if anything will come of this, stranger things have happened. At the very least this news is apt to give a cranky Ryan Singel a reason to crack at least a little smile.

Boys, live long and prosper. When the big money guys start pulling up in Maseratis they say could be yours tomorrow, stick to your guns. Remember another promise that a couple of other college guys made when you were in grade school: Don’t Be Evil.

You can start by not suing us for using the picture we downloaded from your site, joindiaposra.com.

 The JIDF relies on your support. Click here to support us.

Copyright © Jewish Internet Defense Force
All Rights Reserved

The views expressed on this website do not necessarily reflect the views of the JIDF. The content is not intended to malign any religion, ethnic group, club, organization, company or individual. This site's intention is to do no harm, to not injure others, defame, or libel. All data and information provided on this site is for informational, educational, and/or entertainment purposes only. The Jewish Internet Defense Force (JIDF) makes no representations as to accuracy, currentness, correctness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use, or access to this site. We are not responsible for translation or interpretation of content. We are not responsible for defamatory statements bound to government, religious or other laws from the reader’s country of origin. All information is provided on an as-is basis with no warranties, and confers no rights. We are not responsible for the actions, content, accuracy, opinions expressed, privacy policies, products or services or for any damages or losses, directly or indirectly, caused or alleged to have been caused as a result of your use or reliance on such information on the Jewish Internet Defense Force site. This site includes links to other sites and blogs operated by third parties. These links are provided as a convenience to you and as an additional avenue of access to the information contained therein. We have not reviewed all of the information on other sites and are not responsible for the content of any other sites or any products or services that may be offered through other sites. The inclusion of these links in no way indicates their endorsement, support or approval of the contents of this site or the policies or positions of the JIDF. We have the right to edit, remove or deny access to content that is determined to be, in our sole discretion, unacceptable. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use this blog and the Website. The JIDF is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
Related Posts with Thumbnails