Profile Technologies, a company from New Zealand, is suing Facebook for shutting down its profile and terminating an agreement they had with the popular social media site. Facebook denies the accusations and do not believe the allegations have any merit.
Who is Profile Technologies?
It is a company that offers a product called Profile Engine first appeared in 2007. The original name was Advanced Search and has seen more than 10 million people create profiles on the website. You can search for people on their site by different criteria, including age, gender, horoscope sign, and location.
Facebook allowed Profile Engine access to the public areas of user profiles to index them so that Profile Engine users could search them. In return, Profile Engine added social network features to their search capabilities. They gained access to more than 420 million profiles. The company claims that Facebook sued them because they made money off of advertisers outside of Facebook.
The lawsuit claims that Facebook turned off the access without a reason. They say that Facebook ruined their reputation by claiming that they caused spam email.
Criticisms of Profile Technology abound from users who say the site has created profiles of them that they did not allow and have no authority to.
The problem with this issue for users is that their information is there forever for anyone to find. Even if they delete their profile on Facebook, the information is still out there. There is also access to all of that person’s friends. They have this information because they paid for it.
Opinions are divided about who is right. Some say that Facebook as the right to terminate an agreement if it doesn’t like how another company is using its platform. Others believe that it made a contract so it is liable for terminating it. It will be interesting to see how the courts decide.
[Image via amardeep]