Facebook and Its Big Data Values

WIRED magazine is an information platform that shares news and reports through it’s website, digital edition, physical magazine, social media, and live events. This press center specifically focuses on how technology impacts society and leads to innovation. During Facebook’s 10th Anniversary, the magazine covered an article labeled as “partner content” on the company and the important role big data has played in its development. It was written by Yves de Montcheuil, the Vice President of Marketing at a “real-time open source big data integration software” company known as Talend.  It provides products for data and cloud integration, as well as services such as support and consulting. It’s mission is to provided data agility and make companies data driven in order to improve quality and efficiency. The article also provides Yves de Montcheuil’s twitter handle at the bottom, providing a source to see more about Talend. Throughout the article, Montcheuil refers to Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg as a pioneer and a visionary. The article is not only informational about important data has recently become, but is also promoting companies that specialize in big data. The advertising and promotion is subtle in this article, but still present.

Montcheuil argues that, as well as being a social network, Facebook is a big data specialist. He claims that its growth is largely due to big data, and will continue to grow through it. He explains,”basically, it uses the information it has on each of its members to offer connections that may be of interest to guide the presentation of information according to each individual’s interests”. All of this information Facebook has collected has led it to, “become one of the world’s largest repositories of personal data, with an ever growing range of potential uses”.

An example of how Facebook utilizes its data can be seen through its advanced, multi-criteria search called Graph Search. It offers suggestions in real time and provides a filter system to refine each search. This makes searching through all of the data stored on the social network easier and more efficient. Another example are features such as “Flashback”, also known as “On This Day”. Facebook has the ability to show users what they posted on the same date in the past. Users can edit, delete, or share these memories. This shows how much information and data Facebook stores, and how once posted on the internet, nothing really disappears.

Personal data has become so important for marketing and predictive analytics. Facebook has taken to monetizing its data for these purposes, though it keeps everything consolidated and anonymous for privacy reason. This information could also potentially be used for government agencies for purposes such as insurance or tax fraud. However, because Facebook is considered private, this would certainly upset many users and cause issues for the company.

Montcheuil predicts that the uses of big data will only continue to expand, and the selling of data will not decrease any time soon. They also predict that Facebook will not concede its market to competitors anytime soon. Therefore the need for technology and data companies such as Talend will become more and more important.