This is my review of Human Pets, which is a Facebook application.
It’s supposed to be some cute application where people can own people, buy and sell them, give them gifts, etc.
I found it pretty addictive (and a fun way to meet people) until I read a little and discovered some negative aspects of the application.
- You can’t join unless you have five friends on your Facebook profile (I have way more than that so I didn’t notice) – if you don’t have five friends, you have to invite five friends to Facebook so that you can use the application. I shouldn’t have to invite friends just to use your stupid Facebook application.
- People can buy and sell other people like cattle. While this may seem like a good idea, I don’t want my friends bought by complete strangers who refuse to reply to messages asking them to give the friend back (or they laugh at you in spite).I think every user should either a) have the option of reversing a purchase if they don’t want to be bought – it would reverse the sale, the user would get their owner back and the prospective buyer would be blocked or b) the option to enable some sort of toggle switch in the user’s profile where if enabled, nobody is able to buy them (& it would freeze their current owner if they have one).
- The developer doesn’t actually listen to complaints & suggestions. I’ve sent who knows how many of both and none were replied to. Good customer service would be sending a response of, “Hi, I’ve received your complaint/suggestion and it will be handled” or better yet, a personalized response.
- People are often banned/suspended without notice of what they’ve done and what they can do to correct the problem. I was never one of those people but I’ve been reading horror stories. Human Pets has no Acceptable Use Policy (AUP).
- This application does not respect privacy. Anyone can be bought or sold and they don’t even have to be using Human Pets. I was able to buy/sell any friend without them accepting membership to the application. The default is global visibility rather than friends only. Basically, this means that even if you don’t use the application, the application can scrape your information, someone adds you and the application spams you through notifications until you block it.