Facebook Is Forcing You To Talk To Your Friends On Its Terms

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mssengerPhoto Courtesy of Facebook.
Facebook Messenger has seen better days. After a recent survey revealed that Whatsapp is the most popular chat application globally, troubling new reports have emerged about the nature of Facebook Messenger's mobile app terms of service.

While most of us admittedly skip through the pages and pages of legal jargon that often characterize a company's terms of service, a closer look at what Messenger has its users agree to, might make us rethink our laissez-faire attitude when it comes to terms of service.

Since Facebook made its chat service available as a standalone app that uses less memory and battery life than the full application, over one billion users have downloaded it. In doing so, they've unwittingly granted Facebook nearly unlimited access to their entire mobile device.

Among the revelations: Facebook Messenger can read personal information stored on your device, access your contacts and the frequency with which you communicate with them, monitor your call log, and record audio and video from your phone.

That's a lot of access.

While the social media giant does have legitimate reasons to access such a wide scope of information (it needs access to your phone camera to send photos, for instance), our general cluelessness about what we're agreeing to when we download the app harkens back to a story we did earlier today about our dwindling privacy online.

If we're going to take control of our online identities, we share a collective responsibility to educate ourselves about what information we're sharing with who.

Terms of services, here we come. (The Huffington Post)