WhatsApp vows to not become Facebook, no interest in personal data

WhatsApp vows to not become Facebook, no interest in personal data
Facebook’s planned acquisition of WhatsApp has been in the news pretty much nonstop. Of course, there have been no shortage of opinions offered about the price or how privacy concerns would be addressed given the dichotomy of the business models between Facebook, which makes its money from knowing your business, and WhatsApp, which does not.

Jan Koum, co-founder and CEO of WhatsApp, took to the company’s blog and made it known in no uncertain terms that WhatsApp was not going to become some data-mining apparatus of Facebook.

“Respect for your privacy is coded into our DNA,” according to Koum who is not big on the idea of overbearing screening of one’s personal communications, having grown up in the Soviet Union. WhatsApp has made its cornerstone the idea of not selling advertisements, not compiling personal data, and enable people to communicate freely without fear.

Koun states that the deal with Facebook would not have happened if the company was going to have to change its principles, “Speculation to the contrary isn’t just baseless and unfounded, it’s irresponsible.” The notions that WhatsApp would become a new source of juicy data to be collected for the computer algorithms to process into advertisements are not unfounded given Facebook's business model.

Koun also notes that WhatsApp will continue to operate autonomously and that its model will not change.  That is somewhat comforting for those with privacy concerns, but at the same time, Koum and co-founder Brian Acton are not the owners any more.  After vesting of some of the stock involved in the acquisition is complete in four years, we could very well see some dramatic changes in some of how WhatsApp operates.

source: WhatsApp

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9 Comments

1. Topcat488

Posts: 1416; Member since: Sep 29, 2012

Facebook is YO daddy... You gonna see some changes alright, now go to your room! O.o

2. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

Like Facebook is gonna pay that much money and doesnt expect a return in their investments. They also said they wouldn't sell their company.

3. StraightEdgeNexus

Posts: 3689; Member since: Feb 14, 2014

Wow that was a direct jab. I'm glad i gave up on facebook back in 2010.

4. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

Whatsapp - you will have no say in it - Facebook is basically data mining software for the govt, and you will be, too...

5. AfterShock

Posts: 4147; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

I believe the sentiment, but that's it. FB can go FI!

6. Snoobab

Posts: 175; Member since: Dec 07, 2011

So long WhatsApp... it's been a helluva ride.

7. alumoyo

Posts: 392; Member since: Aug 26, 2013

And here come the usual "I don't use facebook, I'm uninstalling whatsapp" comments. Its like in the 90s when people would declare "I don't watch TV" to make themselves seem more sophisticated or smarter. Didn't work then, doesn't work now.

8. Ishmeet

Posts: 111; Member since: Sep 16, 2013

While I continue to use whatsapp for now, it's only for a time being, that I believe, it shall stay the same. Same was told by Instagram team too, some time ago. What we get to see is, IOS ui and styling is given to android apps and they are buggy as hell. So long whatsapp, the journey was good, till you came under fb and now, I can just wait for an iOS7 like whatsapp on my android.

9. Blazers

Posts: 751; Member since: Dec 05, 2011

The previous owners can come out and say whatever they feel, but until facebook themselves comes out and says it, their words are meaningless.

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