If Americans are united in anything, it’s in their desire for free stuff. You can’t go two pages in the computer section of Yahoo! Answers without seeing someone ask how they can get so-and-so “totally free” and/or “without downloading anything.” (This latter usually brands the asker as a kid who doesn’t have admin privileges on the family desktop.) Politicians, not surprisingly, have built entire empires out of concealing the price of “free” stuff.
Now comes word that Facebook is using your precious personal information for, OMG, commercial purposes. You or I will probably react this way: “Well, duh.” For the rest of the world, Tam has the proper response:
What did you think was going to pay for this futuristic new way to stay in touch with your friends and family, to keep everyone you know updated on your every meal and movie and micturition? Did you think some kind philanthropist had donated the code and the server space and the bandwidth out of the kindness of his heart?
Wait ’til they find out that should they micturate on a rug in this fair city, they must pay compensation.