Facebook and LinkedIn Slapped on The Wrist for Privacy

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Facebook  (FB) and LinkedIn (LNKD) are facing user and media criticism over privacy, but analysts project users will remain steadfast to the sites, that despite certain levels of distrust.

The social network giants have been caught playing with emotions and emails but users will forgive them soon enough, according to Morningstar analyst Rick Summer. "I think generally the reason there is much backlash is because these websites are so needed and used very heavily by professionals on the LinkedIn side and certainly consumers on the Facebook side," Summer said in a phone interview with TheStreet. "When you have a backlash it really means the people can't find an alternative - it's important to the fabric of what they're doing."

Users and privacy companies are calling out Facebook for manipulating emotions. For a research paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Facebook controlled the posts streaming on more than 689,000 News Feeds by choosing whether users would see positive or negative posts then monitored the users' responses.

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Facebook, which had more than 1.2 billion monthly active users (MAUs) denied that the data used in the study was associated with a particular person. "In this study, none of the data used was associated with a specific person's Facebook account," said a Facebook spokesperson via email. "The process we used to conduct the study was designed to make the data anonymous. We are confident our policies and practices complied with the law in all respects."

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