Facebook: The company other giant technology firms really fear?

1st August 2011

"Facebook has 650 million users and growing. Just like Google is worried about Facebook fencing a big portion of the world's population, Apple should be worried about Facebook controlling hundreds of millions of people. It's a platform war out there, and Facebook is in a good position."

But then again arguably Google is worried about Facebook too, though Google's CEO Eric Schmidt suggested just last week that the world does not need another copy of the social network.

Maybe not a copy but how about a close cousin? Google has been talking to games firms about integrating their games as just one part of a new social networking service, as the Wall Street Journal reports here.

It lists Disney's newly acquired Playdom, Electronic Art's newly acquired Playfish and Zynga as firms that have been approached and it notes the fact that Google owns a big stake in the latter.

Google has had some other good news recently. Wired Magazine declares Google+ ahead of Facebook on points when it comes to privacy.

It writes: "One of Facebook's clearest weaknesses is its privacy practices, which have come under attack many times for being confusing, ever-mutating and self-serving. Facebook's privacy controls remain difficult to navigate, despite efforts at simplification. For instance: Try to find the button to turn off having your "Likes" included in ads. And its privacy policy clocks in at nearly 6,000 words.

"So what's different about Google+'s privacy policy? For one, it's much shorter – just a sentence or two past 1,000 words. The policy is, however, very direct and simple, with statements such as: "After someone tags you in a shared photo or video, you may choose to remove the tag. The social network's policy for what's acceptable behaviour is also concise, direct and well, almost human."

The last few days' news and views may suggest Apple is most nervous but Google looks like it is doing the most about it. Then again, it probably won't stay that way for long.

More from Mindful Money:

Social media: where should you invest next?

Google chairman admits he ‘screwed up’ over Facebook

Social media: Is it the 21 Century's Che Guevara?

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