Facebook has recently blocked Open-Xchange from utilizing a tool that would export friend’s data and import it into other products and services. Ironically, the tool that Facebook blocked is in fact not in violation of Facebook’s Terms and Conditions.
Here was Facebook’s response via email to Open-Xchange:
We’re writing to inform you that your app Connector for ox.io has been disabled for the following violations:
You cannot use a user’s friend list outside of your application, even if a user consents to such use, but you can use connections between users who have both connected to your application. (FPP II.11)
Our expectation is that developers do not provide users with poor experiences, such as those resulting from inappropriate or misleading content, privacy and security vulnerabilities, and general spam in the Stream, Requests, and elsewhere. We appreciate your commitment to improving the application ecosystem on Platform.
What’s the bottom line here?
Even though Facebook’s Terms and Conditions allows you to download your friends data that is otherwise made accessible via their public profile, Facebook is blocking the tool because personal data is Facebook’s gold.
Especially in light of Google’s new social network initiative Google+. Facebook is going to do absolutely everything it can to prevent another social network from gaining any advantage in the marketplace.