Judge: “No Fundamental Right To Use Facebook”

In a decision that potentially gives users four or five extra hours a day to get stuff done, a federal judge ruled Thursday that nobody has the right to use Facebook. Don’t worry! Nobody’s going to take your Facebook away—unless, like participants in the case, you do something silly and try to make Facebook act like you want Facebook to act: You must act the way Facebook wants you to act. Don’t worry! That’s just an overly ominous way of saying the judge ruled that users can’t use software (like Sambreel’s PageRage) that affect the look and feel of the site, and that Facebook can simploy block them if they do.

“There is no fundamental right to use Facebook,” wrote Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo. “Users may only obtain a Facebook account upon agreement that they will comply with Facebook’s terms, which is unquestionably permissible under the antitrust laws. It follows, therefore, that Facebook is within its rights to require that its users disable certain products before using its website.” There was going to be a rally protesting the decision, but everybody got too busy playing Farmville instead. [Gigaom]