F you "Friend"ster
May 31, 2007 11:34 AM   Subscribe

So, bored at work, instead of stabbing myself in the eye, I decided to Google myself, since I haven't done it in a while. So the usual results came up and with them a Friendster page with my first and last name.

When Friendster was making changes to its layout some time ago, it gave its members the choice to display their last name; which I opted out of. Today, when I followed the link to the page, the setting has magicaly changed and my last name was displayed. I immediately changed it back to no display but I am very angry about this.

Questions, why and how did this happen? What can I do to have the result removed from Google search? What can I do to Friendster? I feel that my privacy has been violated. Any suggestions?
posted by barrakuda to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I think that if you value your privacy, you probably shouldn't post information on sites like Friendster. Don't share any information that you don't want public on a social networking site, even if they super-extra-promise you not to give it out or sell it to people.

You never know, I was reading about companies that go bankrupt, and bail themselves out by selling contact information for their customers to junk mailers and spammers.

Google has this form to expedite the removal of the cached copy
posted by I like to eat meat at 11:45 AM on May 31, 2007 [3 favorites]

Hmmm, you made me curious, so I went to check mine, but it was still in the off position. So it doesn't appear to be a site wide thing.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:47 AM on May 31, 2007 [1 favorite]

I can sympathize - I google myself on occasion just to see what others see when they do the same. As soon as my Friendster page started turning up in that search, I deleted my account. I was furious!
posted by AthenaPolias at 11:53 AM on May 31, 2007

There's nothing you can do to Friendster that the fickle nature of the internet itself hasn't already done.
posted by cosmicbandito at 11:56 AM on May 31, 2007 [3 favorites]

I had a similar problem. My solution was to change my last name to something else. Problem solved!

It makes it harder for people to find you on these sites, but if you're worried about your friendster being seen, maybe you should make it a teeny bit harder to search you out.
posted by duckierose at 11:56 AM on May 31, 2007

In a couple weeks google and the rest will re-index that page and your name will be gone. After that I would delete the friendster account or at least use fictional names.
posted by damn dirty ape at 11:59 AM on May 31, 2007

I used to have this problem with friendster myself - it would randomly change permissions in its favor. they did that three times until I closed down the account. it was useless anyway.
posted by krautland at 12:57 PM on May 31, 2007

This happened to me, too. It was the top result for my very unique name. Thankfully I remembered the password and could change the details of my account (I think I ended up just deleting it because I never use it). I didn't keep close track of the status on Google, but it was completely gone from the results within 10 days.
posted by kyleg at 1:08 PM on May 31, 2007

This is why my mom always lists her last name as Anonymous when she signs up for stuff.
posted by IndigoRain at 2:41 PM on May 31, 2007

Huh. Mine was showing my last name too. Thanks for the heads up.
posted by statolith at 3:04 PM on May 31, 2007

This happened to me with a different site, and it's currently 4 months after I removed my last name, and the site is still #10 or so on a google search for me. Don't expect that because you've taken it off that the internet has forgotten.
posted by Jairus at 6:15 PM on May 31, 2007

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