Social networking sites like Facebook are popular and used by over a billion people. This is possibly its biggest flaw, trying to be something for everyone, However, as an educator have concerns about privacy even with the new privacy settings that are available. Lately I have also seen an increase in the number of commercial advertisements being posted to my account. The fact that these ads are tailored to my interests confirms the personal "data mining" that is going on.
However, new social networking platforms are becoming available. One site, Sgrouples, https://sgrouples.com/, claims that there is:
"NO TRACKING COOKIES, NO STALKING, NO SPYING, NO BULLYING"
I can make a group for students in my course and I can post, connect with individual members, broadcast news or discuss a project. I have access to editable docs, discussions, photos, an events calendar, and a mailing list. All these tools can be used to foster learner collaboration and help create a learning community in my course.
With Facebook's IP offering, there are questions as to whether privacy will become an even greater issue. In this interview with Sgrouples CEO discusses this issue of privacy and how Sgrouples is committed to privacy. http://video.foxnews.com/v/1644674786001/is-facebook-just-a-fad/?playlist_id=87937