If we know back then during Facebook’s infancy what we know today, would we be as willing to hand over our information to the company? Chances are many of us would not be comfortable with that idea, so imagine what if Facebook had actually decided to take our user data and monetize it?

Turns out that’s almost what had happened. According to a report from The Wall Street Journal who managed to obtain emails from an unredacted court document, it seems that at one point in time several years ago, an idea was floated that suggested that Facebook could potentially charge companies for access to user data, and that it was even suggested that companies would need to spend at least $250,000 a year on advertising if they did not want to get cut off from user data.

However as many of us already know, it seems that Facebook ultimately decided against it. In a statement made by Konstantinos Papamiltiadis, Facebook’s director of developer platforms and programs, “We stand by the platform changes we made in 2015 to stop a person from sharing their friends’ data with developers. Any short-term extensions granted during this platform transition were to prevent the changes from breaking user experience.”

He adds, “To be clear, Facebook has never sold anyone’s data. Our APIs have always been free of charge and we have never required developers to pay for using them, either directly or by buying advertising.”

Filed in General. Read more about Facebook and Privacy.

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