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Social networking sites: Is the commercial use of personal information ethical?

  • Personal information if private

    Personal information can definitely be ethically used for commercial purposes, provided that the information is not made freely available to companies other that the one it is given to. People can easily be comfortable sharing information about themselves with companies if said companies can assure them that the information will only be used by them.

  • Yes, Users Give Information Voluntarily

    Yes, the commercial use of personal information from social networking sites is ethical, because users put the information on the site voluntarily. Social networking usually does not charge users, so using the personal information for commercial uses allows the networking site to profit, and allows businesses to reach very specific advertising demographic groups. If a user is uncomfortable with their personal information being shared, they could start a site that does not share information, or they could not join social networking. But the site should be able to make whatever agreements it wants to with users, which can include commercial use of personal information.

  • Definition of unethical

    Social networking lives and dies by providing the information that people voluntary agree to give to them so they can share their lives with friends to predatory advertisers. Many say that it's our fault as consumers for providing this information to begin with, but many are not aware that we are be being bought and sold by companies we were told we can trust.

  • Don't Sell Personal Information

    Just like grocery stores who sell personal information to third parties, the commercial use of personal information without the consent of the user is unethical. Sometimes, there are clauses in privacy policies that say certain websites may be advertised because the social networking site owns another entity. Other times, terms of use include clauses that say advertisers can do this or that with your cookie information from your browser. Still, without the knowledge of consumers, using personal information is a gross invasion of privacy.

  • The commercial use of personal information is not ethical.

    The commercial use of personal information is not ethical.A company should not be able to make money off of a person without giving them some compensation.That is basically big business making money of of individuals which totally goes against the basic American creed and ethics which this country has been going by for hundreds of years.

  • No, it's not ethical.

    I don't believe that using a person's personal information is ethical. It is true that having a facebook account is optional, but it is now to the point where it is more difficult to communicate and succeed without having one. I feel that they are exploiting the need to have an account in this manner.

  • The commercial use of personal information is not ethical.

    The commercial use of personal information by social networking sites is an exploitation of its users. It is also a way to profit off a user base without having to distribute any of the earnings to those people whose information helped you earn it. Social networking sites should be required to obtain permission from users prior to using their personal information for commercial purposes.


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