The way that the media is describing it is quite entirely different from what you are used to on websites.
A lot of ad agencies - ya know those that provide the ads for your websites - e.g. Google, Yahoo, AdChoices (Microsoft), adbrite, and so on. Most of the major companies don't do it, and even if they do it, they don't give away your info. The only thing that's shared is the metrics - such as how long you read the site, stay on the site, the clickthroughs, the pageview, if your computer is unique, stuff like that. But other companies, like independent advertising firms - they do it 10 times worse, and if you stumble across an unknown company, they do things more evil than the ones that are large independent firms. These other companies sell your information [doesn't matter who's bidding for your info, it can be anyone, but most common is companies, corporations willing to pay big bucks to that agency] - and that means everything from your age, your address, your preferences, the whole marketing sheet. Those firms make money off how much they can learn from you browsing.
The large ones don't sell your information, they do it by the law, and by the book. If they don't do it by the book, they get in trouble.
Facebook is doing it entirely different from other companies. Facebook is putting your "timeline" in plain sight. This will just cause trouble for Facebook, because users don't really want to share everything. They want to share, sure, but not everything.
If Facebook is that evil - Expect your previously visited websites to appear on the timeline and charge each shared website for putting their metric on 100 million eyeballs.
I'm not sure why many find this surprising, though. They may not be using the data now, but store it and change their minds later, maybe? Heh. It's the price you pay for using the service -- some may find it too costly though.
Why allow facebook to track what your forum members do on your site? All we want is to allow them to login with facebook and to allow them to like posts. So why allow facebook to index more than that? It should not be too hard to create a facebook login and a facebook like function that blocks all further data mining functions. The only reason why facebook can track everything that every user on your site does, is because the full scripts are loaded on every page. Why not just load the scripts when they are clicked? That would be far more efficient anyway.
remember when you login to your fb account using other computers inside your house.
FB will asked you, Whats the name of your PC and where is it located?
( i always answer there: NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS)
common sense shows, FB is tracking you to know that
if you login using that pc,
you are sitting on that specific place (let say kitchen)
then FB will give you ads related to kitchen
the worst part is:
if the evil boys will take over that info of you
they can do whatever they want,
launched missiles directly targeted to your head