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View Full Version : Freaky Facebook Knows Me Better Than I Do!



Silver King
06-11-2009, 02:47 AM
Something weird happened earlier today.

A person I know has been bothering me to check out his Facebook page. I found him on there but couldn't see much unless I created an account. I don't plan on participating there, so I set up an alias just so I could access his page and see what all the fuss was about.

As I was navigating about, trying to get my bearings, a page showed up with several accounts, asking me if I wanted to "friend" any of the members who were listed. One of the names caught my eye, a person who is a member of AW. As I read further, more and more AW members appeared. Then I saw my niece's name, my sister-in-law, a couple of friends and a cousin I haven't spoken to in years.

This really gave me the willies, and I logged off without participating further.

What I'm wondering is, how in the world does Facebook "know" I'm associated with these people in any way? I didn't use any personal info to create the account, so how can they possibly cross-reference me with "friends" I actually know?

wannawrite
06-11-2009, 02:48 AM
creepy

aadams73
06-11-2009, 02:51 AM
Facebook scares me even though I have an account. My cousins keep stalking me, and when I don't respond they get pissy and email my mother to whine about it. Which--being the stubborn wench that I am--means I defer responding for even longer periods of time.*

So how does it know who you are and who you know? Computers know everything, doncha know? :D

*This results in them calling me on Skype and showing me their butts.

som1luvsmi
06-11-2009, 02:54 AM
Did you use your regular email to set it up? They may have gotten the info based on that. :Shrug:

rhymegirl
06-11-2009, 02:56 AM
I tried to do the Facebook thing but I kept getting these emails telling me these teenaged boys wanted to friend me and that was just too weird. Maybe they think I'm a cougar?

Rachel
06-11-2009, 02:56 AM
I was going to say... the e-mail. The can take info from e-mail accounts. :eek:

brainstorm77
06-11-2009, 03:04 AM
If you put in a email thats linked to some sort of messenger yeah it can read your list and get names that way.
Then it starts suggesting friends of friends etc...

Silver King
06-11-2009, 03:05 AM
...So how does it know who you are and who you know? Computers know everything, doncha know? :D
I'm beginning to believe that more and more. I had the strangest feeling, though, seeing all of those accounts appear that belong to people I know within only minutes of joining up. It was like a magic trick, only it was no illusion.

Did you use your regular email to set it up? They may have gotten the info based on that. :Shrug:
Yes, I did use my e-mail account, but I've never contacted nor been contacted by most of the "friends" who were listed. And the name that really blew me away was my cousin, who I haven't spoken to in over twenty years.

som1luvsmi
06-11-2009, 03:12 AM
Maybe your computer is possessed and trying to freak you out.

Have you noticed any furniture moving randomly of its own volition?

Silver King
06-11-2009, 03:33 AM
Maybe your computer is possessed and trying to freak you out...
You may have a point I hadn't thought of: Occasionally my keyboard starts tapping out posts here when I'm not paying attention. Some would call it an alter-ego, but that can't be possible when my fingers never touch the keys. And that ghost curses way more than I ever do!

BigWords
06-11-2009, 03:36 AM
Facebook is Skynet...

Skynet is evil...

:idea:

Facebook must be destroyed before we are all killed in a nuclear war with the machines.

Pagey's_Girl
06-11-2009, 03:40 AM
That's creepy. Another reason to stay well away from there.

A friend of mine has been bugging the heck out of me to set up a MySpace page solely so I can friend the infamous Jamie-from-my-sig-line. Gawd. That makes me feel creepy just thinking about it. Too stalkerish. The Fixx isn't exactly Flight of the Conchords, and I'm not Mel...

Silver King
06-11-2009, 03:58 AM
I should mention that I'm not implying there's anything wrong with Facebook or the people who enjoy the site. I'm merely trying to figure out how they figured me out.

So far, the culprit seems to be my e-mail address, even though I've never used it to communicate with nearly all of the "friends" I recognized.

KTC
06-11-2009, 04:00 AM
Something weird happened earlier today.

A person I know has been bothering me to check out his Facebook page. I found him on there but couldn't see much unless I created an account. I don't plan on participating there, so I set up an alias just so I could access his page and see what all the fuss was about.

As I was navigating about, trying to get my bearings, a page showed up with several accounts, asking me if I wanted to "friend" any of the members who were listed. One of the names caught my eye, a person who is a member of AW. As I read further, more and more AW members appeared. Then I saw my niece's name, my sister-in-law, a couple of friends and a cousin I haven't spoken to in years.

This really gave me the willies, and I logged off without participating further.

What I'm wondering is, how in the world does Facebook "know" I'm associated with these people in any way? I didn't use any personal info to create the account, so how can they possibly cross-reference me with "friends" I actually know?

Are they in the email contacts list of the email address you signed on with? Barring that, are they also fish?

KTC
06-11-2009, 04:01 AM
I should mention that I'm not implying there's anything wrong with Facebook or the people who enjoy the site. I'm merely trying to figure out how they figured me out.

So far, the culprit seems to be my e-mail address, even though I've never used it to communicate with nearly all of the "friends" I recognized.

If you have say 3 of the 'friends' as email contacts, it may choose those three...and then other 'friends' that those ones share in common. Mayhaps.

KTC
06-11-2009, 04:02 AM
I tried to do the Facebook thing but I kept getting these emails telling me these teenaged boys wanted to friend me and that was just too weird. Maybe they think I'm a cougar?

first burst out loud laugh of the day. i think i just peed a little.

som1luvsmi
06-11-2009, 04:06 AM
Maybe Facebook is just a front for Homeland Security and they already know everything about you.:eek:
There's a spooky thought.

BigWords
06-11-2009, 04:06 AM
I don't care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members.

Groucho Marx

(AW excluded from that statement :))

Silver King
06-11-2009, 04:21 AM
If you have say 3 of the 'friends' as email contacts, it may choose those three...and then other 'friends' that those ones share in common. Mayhaps.
That makes sense, a six degrees of separation type thing (or in your example, three degrees, or maybe even two).

Whatever they use to make the connection, it works quick, I mean within moments of joining up. The last thing I expected was to see all of those familiar "faces." It was unsettling in way, like people jumping out of the dark all at once on all sides.

Oh, well. My venture into social networking lasted all of five minutes, a bit shy of what I expected.

rhymegirl
06-11-2009, 04:52 AM
first burst out loud laugh of the day. i think i just peed a little.

Oh yeah? Why is that funny? Funny how? How exactly do I make you laugh, mr. kevin? Am I funny to you? (lines from Goodfellas, in case anyone is wonderin')

But seriously, what? You don't think I could be a cougar? :)

KTC
06-11-2009, 04:53 AM
That makes sense, a six degrees of separation type thing (or in your example, three degrees, or maybe even two).

Whatever they use to make the connection, it works quick, I mean within moments of joining up. The last thing I expected was to see all of those familiar "faces." It was unsettling in way, like people jumping out of the dark all at once on all sides.

Oh, well. My venture into social networking lasted all of five minutes, a bit shy of what I expected.

You can tell me why it really scared you. I was one of those suggested friends, wasn't I!

**Insert evil laughter here**

Ken
06-11-2009, 04:55 AM
... good thing your wife wasn't looking over your shoulder at the time, SK. ;-)
Kidding, kidding! :-)

rhymegirl
06-11-2009, 05:04 AM
Cue ghostly music:

Silver King! This is the spirit of Facebook! Get back over to our site. We know everything about you. You cannot hide!

spamwarrior
06-11-2009, 05:05 AM
I'd say the email things. On the other hand, if you're friends with one person, facebook will recommend friends that you should add based on that one person. If all your friends are also friends with the one person you're friends with, facebook keeps records of that.

Silver King
06-11-2009, 05:14 AM
You can tell me why it really scared you. I was one of those suggested friends, wasn't I!

**Insert evil laughter here**
No, it wasn't that bad.


... good thing your wife wasn't looking over your shoulder at the time, SK. ;-)
Kidding, kidding! :-)
Funny you should say that, since most of the "friends" were women! She would've scoffed, in that high nasal tone of hers, and said, "They must not know you as well as I do or they'd put you on their enemies list."

KTC
06-11-2009, 05:15 AM
No, it wasn't that bad.




ooh. i've just been burned by a fish.

KTC
06-11-2009, 05:16 AM
Oh yeah? Why is that funny? Funny how? How exactly do I make you laugh, mr. kevin? Am I funny to you? (lines from Goodfellas, in case anyone is wonderin')

But seriously, what? You don't think I could be a cougar? :)

You'd make a fine cougar, Kath. Slow down, there, missy. I just found it amusing. Cougar on, girl!

JoNightshade
06-11-2009, 05:18 AM
Spamwarrior's got it. I believe Facebook has relationships with several email providers. It's not even necessary that they dug into YOUR email account, if you didn't give them permission. If OTHER people who have emailed you in the past have your email address on their address book, and if they've ported in their contacts to Facebook, Facebook is probably recognizing that and recommending them, as well as their friends, as your buddies.

tjwriter
06-11-2009, 05:21 AM
Facebook recommends people based on where you went to high school and college, and when. Then it recommends friends based on who you friend and who their friends are. It can get massive pretty quick.

Silver King
06-11-2009, 05:23 AM
Cue ghostly music:

Silver King! This is the spirit of Facebook! Get back over to our site. We know everything about you. You cannot hide!
*Inserts a finger in each ear, singing, Laaaaa, la la la la la, la la la la la, la la la la la la la la la la laaaaaa, when you walk on by, will you call my name?*

KTC
06-11-2009, 05:24 AM
*Inserts a finger in each ear, singing, Laaaaa, la la la la la, la la la la la, la la la la la la la la la la laaaaaa, when you walk on by, will you call my name?*

but you can have a fish for your profile pic.









and play word games.









and tell near strangers what you ate for lunch.

Silver King
06-11-2009, 05:28 AM
ooh. i've just been burned by a fish.
Charred. CHARRED!!!

Ken
06-11-2009, 05:28 AM
Funny you should say that, since most of the "friends" were women! She would've scoffed, in that high nasal tone of hers, and said, "They must not know you as well as I do or they'd put you on their enemies list."

... lol :-D
Would be the same with me if I were hitched.

KTC
06-11-2009, 05:29 AM
Charred. CHARRED!!!

apparently a testy fish. a fish with attitude even.

spamwarrior
06-11-2009, 05:29 AM
Facebook recommends people based on where you went to high school and college, and when. Then it recommends friends based on who you friend and who their friends are. It can get massive pretty quick.

That, too.

Silver King
06-11-2009, 05:45 AM
Spamwarrior's got it. I believe Facebook has relationships with several email providers. It's not even necessary that they dug into YOUR email account, if you didn't give them permission. If OTHER people who have emailed you in the past have your email address on their address book, and if they've ported in their contacts to Facebook, Facebook is probably recognizing that and recommending them, as well as their friends, as your buddies.
I wasn't on the site long, but I remember one of the search options was through e-mail correlation. I didn't use that choice, but apparently my address was employed to find friends for me.

It all seems so strange, how I can join a site one moment, and the next have all of these very accurate "friends" show up. However they do it doesn't really matter, as I won't ever be going there again. It feels like my pocket has been picked, only I'm holding the wallet the whole time and they can see through the leather to enter my personal space.

Ol' Fashioned Girl
06-11-2009, 06:33 AM
Stay away from Farm Town on Facebook! It's more addictive than methamphetamine!

KTC
06-11-2009, 06:36 AM
Stay away from Farm Town on Facebook! It's more addictive than methamphetamine!

what about glue? is it more addictive than glue?

C.bronco
06-11-2009, 06:39 AM
That is weird, but FB AWers may have searched you to see if they could friend you. I'm on as Cynthia Bronco, BTW.

spamwarrior
06-11-2009, 06:42 AM
What about Fairyland? Awesome application! And Superpoke Pets!

C.bronco
06-11-2009, 06:43 AM
I've found friends I haven't seen since grade school, high school and college though. It is pretty cool.

rhymegirl
06-11-2009, 06:46 AM
That is weird, but FB AWers may have searched you to see if they could friend you. I'm on as Cynthia Bronco, BTW.

No, you're not. :)

rhymegirl
06-11-2009, 06:55 AM
Funny you should mention this as I just had a similar situation.
I'm on facebook and I'm used to the "Friend Suggestions". It seems they are picked because we have friends in common. However, just yesterday, I started getting a recurring friend suggestion to 'friend' one of my sons teachers. I thought it was odd as we have no friends in common, are not in any of the same networks, etc... and then it occured to me that facebook had taken a look at my hotmail address book which has this teachers address in it.
So... I'd say that's how facebook knew to recommend all of those women for you to 'friend', Silver King.

Aha. So SK has a lot of women in his address book, eh?

Silver King
06-11-2009, 06:55 AM
That is weird, but FB AWers may have searched you to see if they could friend you. I'm on as Cynthia Bronco, BTW.
I know. You were one of my "friends" who appeared on Facebook. (No kidding.)

I didn't recognize your name, but your image was familiar from AW. :)

So how does that work, do you think? You and I have never exchanged e-mails, so is it possible that we're "friends" now through other members from your network? If so, how can they possibly know me (besides that time I sent you ten dozen roses for Valentines Day). ;)

C.bronco
06-11-2009, 06:59 AM
If you friend someone, they suggest friends of your friend, or so it seems. However, you only "friend" (awful to use it as a verb though) those you select.
Also, when someone invites you to join, they are asked to suggest friends you might know.

P.S. RG LIED! :D I am so Cynthia Bronco.

rhymegirl
06-11-2009, 07:03 AM
lol. He'd mentioned that most were women and I just had to throw that part in.

Hi RG~ it's nice to see you. :)

Yes, I know. I just love to tease Silver King.

And hi there! Nice to see you, too!

brokenfingers
06-11-2009, 07:38 AM
It's amazing how people don't realize the power of the internet.

Facebook, and every other database that pays them for their info, now vknows your friends, what you like and don't like, what you're likely to buy, what your fears, hopes and dreams are, what you wear to sleep at night, what your fantasies are, what your dreams mean, what you future holds, and much, much more.

You're done.

Like the prophets once said: You can check in any time you like, but you can never leave...

Maryn
06-11-2009, 04:22 PM
It feels like my pocket has been picked, only I'm holding the wallet the whole time and they can see through the leather to enter my personal space.And I must say you don't look all that much like your drivers license picture.

Maryn, who doesn't, either

aadams73
06-11-2009, 04:23 PM
Stay away from Farm Town on Facebook! It's more addictive than methamphetamine!

Yeah. Cass had me picking all her corn and sunflowers this morning. :D

rhymegirl
06-11-2009, 05:04 PM
It's amazing how people don't realize the power of the internet.
Facebook, and every other database that pays them for their info, now vknows your friends, what you like and don't like, what you're likely to buy, what your fears, hopes and dreams are, what you wear to sleep at night, what your fantasies are, what your dreams mean, what you future holds, and much, much more.
You're done.
Like the prophets once said: You can check in any time you like, but you can never leave...

Well that's it then. I'm moving to another planet far, far away.

Let the Internet find me if I'm on Pluto.

stormie
06-11-2009, 05:36 PM
My older son forced me to join Facebook. (Yep, he stood over me and made me create an account. He wanted all relatives to join.) Within 12 hours I had about ten people wanting to friend me.

Anyway, was I one of your possible friends, SK? Huh? HUH??!

BTW Silver, I have not a clue how or why that happened to you. Did you sign into your account with personal info? Likes, hobbies, address.... I put as little as possible about me.

Button
06-11-2009, 05:50 PM
I don't know if anyone else has mentioned this, but Facebook's algorithms use your email and anything you willingly identify about yourself. If you added your friend to your friend's list to look at his page, then you will get friends of his also. They'll assume you know a few of his friends.

For your email, it connects to people associated with your email, and those directly associated with you, it'll check their lists and see who is on their friend's list. The more friends you pick from the list, the better the algorithms are at picking out who could be friends of yours.

Six degrees...

Sorry, my job involves algorithm research... >.> Back to heckling.

Silver King
06-11-2009, 11:55 PM
...was I one of your possible friends, SK? Huh? HUH??!
Sadly, you weren't on the list. But you're my friend here, which means far more to me than some "friend" on that other site.

BTW Silver, I have not a clue how or why that happened to you. Did you sign into your account with personal info? Likes, hobbies, address.... I put as little as possible about me.I didn't offer any info except an alias and the e-mail address. The alias is original, too, and I've never used that one before. And no one else on the site has the same name.

I don't know if anyone else has mentioned this, but Facebook's algorithms use your email and anything you willingly identify about yourself. If you added your friend to your friend's list to look at his page, then you will get friends of his also. They'll assume you know a few of his friends...
We've discussed a connection with my e-mail address earlier in the thread, which seems the most obvious means of them ferreting out the relations between some of the names which appeared.

By the way, I didn't "friend" anyone while on the site, so the ones who showed up must have been matched by whatever tools Facebook uses when members first sign up.

Stew21
06-12-2009, 12:08 AM
If you were looked up someone on facebook after you joined, (you said you had to join to see their profile?) it will find people the person is associated with and ask you if you know them too.
Was that person who sent you to facebook also a member here? that could do it right there.

You check out the profile of someone you know - that person is networked in with a lot of the same people as you, and facebook will give you a list of people you may know. You would have to give facebook permission to download your email contacts; if you didn't do that, it wouldn't have pulled anyone from your email account.


(It's all about the 6 degree network, baby)

aadams73
06-12-2009, 12:23 AM
Facebook was kind enough to send an email the other morning with a list of four people whom it thought I ought to know. One was my ex husband, while two of the others were college boyfriends. The fourth person was a complete unknown.

Yeah, I hit "delete" on that one.

YAwriter72
06-12-2009, 12:39 AM
Umm yeah, today it suggested I add the Director of my kids school. I have never even mentioned their school on Facebook!

KTC
06-12-2009, 12:45 AM
Well that's it then. I'm moving to another planet far, far away.

Let the Internet find me if I'm on Pluto.

You should go to Uranus instead, just to be safe.

rhymegirl
06-12-2009, 12:50 AM
You should go to Uranus instead, just to be safe.

Umm....

I won't say it, I won't say it.

KTC
06-12-2009, 12:51 AM
Umm....

I won't say it, I won't say it.

What? Is there something wrong with Uranus? Uranus looks okay to me.

rhymegirl
06-12-2009, 12:53 AM
Hahahahahahha!

I just thought of something. If I happen to casually mention here on AW that I am moving to Pluto...

Does that mean The Internet will pick up on that and still bug me even out there in outer space?

Silver King
06-12-2009, 12:54 AM
If you were looked up someone on facebook after you joined, (you said you had to join to see their profile?) it will find people the person is associated with and ask you if you know them too.
I never did check out his profile. I would've had to "friend" him first, but before I had a chance to I was creeped out, and I haven't been back there since.

Was that person who sent you to facebook also a member here? that could do it right there.No, but I wish he was, since he's a pretty good writer. I won't list the AW members who did appear (except the person I mentioned earlier), but some are my friends here, while others I recognized by name only. And one came as quite a surprise, since I know for a fact the last thing he'd desire is to be my "friend." ;)

You check out the profile of someone you know - that person is networked in with a lot of the same people as you, and facebook will give you a list of people you may know. You would have to give facebook permission to download your email contacts; if you didn't do that, it wouldn't have pulled anyone from your email account. I think I mentioned yesterday that I saw an option for them to access my e-mail account, but I didn't opt for that choice. It struck me as unseemly that they'd even ask such a thing. And though I wasn't on the site for long, the experience seemed invasive to me, as if my privacy were being compromised before I ever had a chance to decide what I wanted to divulge.

KTC
06-12-2009, 12:57 AM
Hahahahahahha!

I just thought of something. If I happen to casually mention here on AW that I am moving to Pluto...

Does that mean The Internet will pick up on that and still bug me even out there in outer space?


You are being matched with Plutonions as we speak. Expect to see friend requests from very far away.

rhymegirl
06-12-2009, 01:00 AM
You are being matched with Plutonions as we speak. Expect to see friend requests from very far away.

Oh great. Just what I need. Teenage boys and Plutonians.

How will I explain that to my husband?

2old2pb
07-19-2009, 05:34 AM
Something weird happened earlier today.

A person I know has been bothering me to check out his Facebook page. I found him on there but couldn't see much unless I created an account. I don't plan on participating there, so I set up an alias just so I could access his page and see what all the fuss was about.

As I was navigating about, trying to get my bearings, a page showed up with several accounts, asking me if I wanted to "friend" any of the members who were listed. One of the names caught my eye, a person who is a member of AW. As I read further, more and more AW members appeared. Then I saw my niece's name, my sister-in-law, a couple of friends and a cousin I haven't spoken to in years.

This really gave me the willies, and I logged off without participating further.

What I'm wondering is, how in the world does Facebook "know" I'm associated with these people in any way? I didn't use any personal info to create the account, so how can they possibly cross-reference me with "friends" I actually know?

I would guess that no matter what forum you visit you still run in the same circles. Facebook only had to know a few of your friends to figure out what circles you run in. It's a discrete math thing.

Silver King
07-19-2009, 05:56 AM
I would guess that no matter what forum you visit you still run in the same circles. Facebook only had to know a few of your friends to figure out what circles you run in. It's a discrete math thing.
But how did FB know who my "friends" are to begin with? That's what turned me off from the site at the get-go. All I did was sign up with an alias to check out someone's page, and before I knew it, I was surrounded by "friends" I actually know.

It's freaking scary, that's all I can say.