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Inside Scoop: Facebook's Messenger app raises red flags

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Inside Scoop: Facebook's Messenger app raises red flags

2:40 /

Facebook users are in uproar over being forced to download a separate Messenger app to chat with friends. In this Inside Scoop, CNET.com Reporter Kara Tsuboi and Senior Writer Ian Sherr discuss privacy concerns, why Facebook is doing this in the first place, and ways to get around using Messenger.

[MUSIC] Hey everyone, welcome to the Inside Scoop, I'm CNet's Kara Tsuboi. Today we're joined by Ian Shure, senior writer at CNet.com. Thanks for joining us, Ian. My pleasure. And today we're talking about Facebook messenger and how Facebook has basically forced its users to migrate over, download this app. And there's been a lot of backlash. People are not pleased. Yeah. A lot of people are not happy about it. Primarily because there are a couple thing going on, right? Part of it is that they don't, a lot of people just don't like having to have another app. Sure. I've seen a lot of people on Facebook complaining about why do I have to download yet another app from Facebook? Mhmm. And then there's a lot of questions around the privacy as well because. Especially Android users are getting this little pop up saying it wants access to all sorts of information->>Right.>> and they're like what's going on, right?>>Right. Okay, so let's unbundle that one. First of all, why is Facebook making you download a second app onto your mobile device?>>Well, this is a trend that's happening throughout the. The technology industry. And the idea is that they can create a better experience by doing this, right? You have a more kind of defined use for the app. When you're going into Messenger you're actively messaging people versus when you're on Facebook and you're kind of searching through the feeds. So, that's part of the logic behind it. And I guess some of the positive news has been that the Messenger app is pretty fast once you do actually download it. Oh, yeah. [UNKNOWN], I mean, it works exactly like Facebook generally, right? Yeah. It's, it's pretty reliable. Yeah. It works pretty well. I've been using it for months and months and months and it works. Now when it comes to the privacy issues, you said it mainly targets, or is specific, to the android users. Well part of it is that the privacy things have come up for android users. Right. So, part of it is a function of how android works versus the way Apple works. So when you download an app on Apple's iOS, you will, once you try and do something, like take a photo and send it to your friends, it will say hey, is it okay if this app. Accesses to the camera. Huh-uh. And you say yes or no. Right. With Android, they ask for all of this upfront. So suddenly you have this whole list of things that it wants access to. Your address book, your, your camera and all the microphone. Yeah. Right? All these things and I went aah. Right? And so the, the idea is. It wants the same stuff that the Apple one wants, right? If you wanna take a photo and send it to your friends it has to have access to the, to the camera. If it, you want to invite your friends to [UNKNOWN] Messenger, it has to have access to your co, your contacts database. It's just the way it works. And then for those people who are just, are very resistant toward downloading this new app or using it. What can they do to get around it?>>You know, you don't have many options, you know. There's always the option leave Facebook, that's always the last option that you have. But in the meantime if you're, if you still want to use Facebook you, you would go to the web if you don't want to use these two apps. Or you stop using Messenger, right, altogether and you just email or text friends. The old-fashioned way. Yeah. [LAUGH] Hard to imagine that. [LAUGH] Old-fashioned by today's standards. Thank you so much, senior writer Ian Sherr on cars to avoid. Thanks for watching this Inside Scoop.

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