Although it seems that social networks like Foursquare, Google+, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest provide their services for free, they all work on a backroom business model that make them highly profitable by selling ads on their platforms.
Intermittently within your social network profiles ads will appear for online booking sites, hotels, airlines, restaurants and tourist destinations. None of this is by coincidence. If you have recently been visiting websites planning your next vacation, you have been slated to receive tourism related advertisements.
When we consider all the information that we need to create our online profiles, we realize that our privacy belongs to the business domain.
For example, Facebook maintains 74% of all online navigation and if we divide their revenues through advertising ($4.2 billion USD) by its billions of users, we see that on average we’re all worth $4 USD to Facebook.
By the way, did you know that FarmVille (one of the most famous Facebook applications) has transmitted user information to third parties? The Wall Street Journal revealed that millions of users have had their information shared, even those who have their set their accounts to the highest privacy levels.
It comes down to one thing: It’s a business circle worth billions of dollars.
Jorge Chavez is Senior Editor at Mijo! Brands of Mexico.
Click here to read more current trends.