Apple Fires Back at Facebook

Posted on December 17, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Apple, Social with 24 Comments

In the wake of Facebook’s escalating public complaints about Apple, the consumer electronics giant has fired back at the baseless claims.

“We believe that this is a simple matter of standing up for our users,” an Apple statement reads. “Users should know when their data is being collected and shared across other apps and websites—and they should have the choice to allow that or not.”

It’s hard to argue with that. But the most damning statement from Apple reveals the true hypocrisy of Facebook’s complaint. Apple isn’t actually preventing Facebook from tracking users. Instead, it’s implementing a pop-up in iOS 14 that lets users choose whether Facebook can track them.

“App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14 does not require Facebook to change its approach to tracking users and creating targeted advertising,” Apple explains. “It simply requires they give users a choice.”

Obviously, I don’t always agree with Apple, and I find many of its public statements and presentations to be hyperbolic and self-serving. But in this case, Apple is both correct and right: Giving users the ability to opt-out of privacy-invasive tracking is in everyone’s best interests. You know, except Facebook’s.

On a related and perhaps not surprising note, Facebook has followed-up its full-page newspaper ads with a new set (seen above) that claim that Apple is preventing it from displaying personalized ads, a move that will “change the Internet as we know it—for the worse.” The less said about that the better.

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