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May 17, 2010

Group sets May 31 as 'Quit Facebook Day'

Posted: 11:27 AM ET

Frustrated by Facebook's recent privacy changes, a group is urging users to delete their Facebook accounts en masse on May 31.

The campaign comes amid complaints that the social-networking juggernaut is diminishing users' privacy with its "open graph" model that adds Facebook connections on other sites across the internet. A handful of glitches during the rollout of the changes have, in fact, put some personal info at risk, if only briefly.

It's clear that some folks are leaving the popular site.

But the organized effort to get people to abandon their Facebook accounts doesn't appear to have gained much traction so far among the site's 400 million-plus users.

More than 2,700 people had pledged to quit Facebook on the group's website Monday morning. The Quit Facebook Day site asks, "Sick of Facebook's lack of respect for your data?" and calls on users to quit the site all at once on May 31.

And about 1,090 people had "liked" the site's Quit Facebook Day page - which, ironically, is on Facebook - as of Monday morning.

By contrast, more than seven times that many people are fans of former "Top Chef" contestant Kevin Gillespie's beard. A fairly random user-created page called "I Love Facebook" had roughly the same number of members as the "Quit Facebook" page.

On Friday, the San Francisco Chronicle's Business Insider blog poked fun at the effort, albeit when the fledgling site had only a couple hundred people signed up. The post's title? "Uh-Oh, 0.00000068% Of Facebook Users Promise To Quit On May 31."

Facebook doesn't provide the number of people who delete their accounts. But the overall numbers are clearly going the other way. A spokeswoman told last week that Facebook had added 10 million active users since late April.

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Filed under: Facebook • privacy • social-networking sites

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