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Facebook, AmEx team up to offer cardmember deals

American Express is promising its cardmembers special deals in return for giving the company access to their Facebook interests, likes, and friends.

Lance Whitney/CNET

American Express is promising cardmembers who use Facebook special deals and discounts. The only catch? AmEx needs access to your Facebook interests, likes, and friends.

In a new program dubbed "Link, Like, Love" and unveiled today on AmEx's Facebook page, cardmembers will be able to choose from a variety of special deals. By using the new app on the Facebook page, members can access a personalized dashboard through which they'll find deals and discounts based on their Facebook likes and interests, and the likes and interests of their friends. Cardmembers can then pick the deals they like and use their credit cards to purchase them.

As a couple of examples cited by American Express, if you chose to "like" Whole Foods Market on Facebook, you may see a Whole Foods Market deal in your dashboard. If one of your friends picked the TV show "Glee" as an interest on Facebook, you may see an offer for "Glee the 3D Concert Movie." Cardmembers can also share deals with friends, according to AmEx.

The credit card company said it will send statement credits to cardmember accounts as they shop online and will over the next few months offer membership reward points, entertainment access, and other exclusive content based on a user's Facebook information.

Some of the retailers already involved in the program include 20th Century Fox, Dunkin' Donuts, Lord & Taylor, Lenovo, Sports Authority, and Travelocity.

Along with the "Link, Like, Love," program, AmEx is setting up a new tool for small businesses. Known as Go Social, the tool is designed to help merchants tap into Facebook and similar platforms to launch their own cardmember deals.

"As we continue to transform our business in the digital space, we're focused on three key areas: value, relevance, and user experience, for both cardmembers and merchants," Ed Gilligan, vice chairman of American Express, said in a statement. "We're thrilled to bring together the power of the Facebook platform and our core business assets in a way that is personalized, meaningful, and will result in significant value for both merchants and cardmembers."

Of course, like most Facebook apps, the new AmEx program requires that cardmembers share certain profile information with the credit card company in order to grab the special deals. Concerns have been raised in the past over the level of access that many Facebook apps require and that some apps abuse.

A report last October by the Wall Street Journal found that many popular Facebook apps were sharing personal information of users with advertisers and other companies, a hole that Facebook had to fix. Around the same time, another report discovered that certain app developers were selling Facebook user information to a data broker, again forcing Facebook to intervene and suspend the developers in question.