is facebook selling user-generated content to advertisers?
I'm sure you are already aware that Facebook is not just there to give us all the perks of providing leisure and fun time for us to keep up with friends, share photos and videos, or play the many online games that are there to steal minutes or hours of our time.
Yes, Facebook makes money too - from sponsors and advertisers. In fact, I heard they are capitalizing on user-generated content as well. They can make money from our simple activities on the site such as "liking" brands or products or even check-ins to stores when advertisers would pay for such content to be published so that it becomes an effective form of word-of-mouth advertising.
If you haven't noticed it yet, look through the "Sponsored" part of your Facebook page to the right. More often than not, you would see the name of your friend "liking" a brand, company, or website. They're not paying your friend to advertise for such brand, company, or website but most likely they are making money from it. Some people find it an unfair practice; but if you ask me, I'm neutral on this because 1) nothing's for free anymore; and 2) if I'm going to have a business of my own one day, I would look forward to more "likes" on my page, too! :-)
If you are one of those people whose privacy means a great deal to you, you have to think about:
1. Reviewing the Privacy Guide of Facebook;
2. Review your privacy settings to make sure that you have controlled the way you share your information and tweak it a bit to your liking and preference;
3. Adding only people you know to your network;
4. Not giving too much information, especially your financial information.