Facebook will soon be rolling out a an external advertising network according to GigaOm. Facebook primary source of revenues are Ads it displays on its own website. The Ads seen on Facebook by users are considered to be not as effective as say Google’s AdSense or AdWords.
Another issue for Facebook is that it is being accessed on mobile phones more than the PC browsers. Mobile phone users do not even see many of these Ads, except the odd sponsored story.
Facebook has recently updated and changed its privacy and governance policies. It has confirmed that it shares data on users with advertisers to show personalized ads on Facebook.com. This sharing of data will also be enabled to serve ads on external websites.
Should Google AdSense watch out?
I am not sure how much impact this will have on Google AdSense. Previous attempts to ape Google’s ad machine like WordAds have not really caught on.
Google itself is mainly a search engine and hence seeing ads is necessarily a call to action. Being a search engine, it has a better system in place to predict what people are looking for than Facebook.
How could it impact your Privacy?
The impact on privacy would not be huge as Facebook plugins on external sites already show personalized data. For example the Facebook box on our blog, will display a list of your common friends who have “Liked” our page. But if Facebook allows personal public data like your updates, photos you have shared on external website as part of advertisements, it could make people very uncomfortable.
Just a thumb rule about using Facebook regarding privacy. Do not share anything on it that you want to keep secret or out of public domain.
It will be interesting to see how Facebook plays this out. Do drop in your comments.