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Entries in Collections (2)

Tuesday
Oct092012

Facebook Experiments with 'Want' and 'Collect' Buttons

Peter Foley/Bloomberg via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Do you like Facebook's "Like" buttons? People use them for all sorts of reasons -- there's even an experiment in which you can click on it to send hugs -- but Facebook, in the meantime, is experimenting with a few variations.

Facebook is testing new "want" and "collect" buttons for its new "Collections" feature. The new buttons, which only appear so far on a few select pages, allow users to create "wish lists" of the stuff they, well, wish for. The wish list is a gallery of sorts of all the items you've collected or wanted.

Facebook is testing the Collections feature with Fab.com, Michael Kors, Pottery Barn, Victoria's Secret, Wayfair.com, and others. If you are a fan of any of those retailers the collections might appear in your News Feed.

Collections is Facebook's second experiment in the last two weeks as it tries out a move into the e-commerce space. Last week Facebook released Gifts, which allows you to buy items for friends directly through the site.

With Collections you don't actually buy the items on Facebook.com, but you do show your interest.

"Collections can be discovered in News Feed, and people will be able to engage with these collections and share things they are interested in with their friends. People can click through and buy these items off of Facebook," the social networking company said in a statement.

There is a "buy" link directly under products you add to your wish lists, but Facebook told ABC News that it is not profiting directly from this feature and doesn't have plans to. The new buttons won't be available across the Web the way the Like button currently is either.

Last week Facebook announced that it had over one billion active users on the site for the first time.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Jun132011

Debt Collectors Seek to 'Friend' Delinquents

Comstock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Seeking to catch up with changing technology, the nation's debt collectors want the laws changed to allow them to reach out and touch delinquents by email, cellphone and text messages.

On Monday, the Association of Credit and Collections Professionals introduced a blueprint for modernizing debt collections. Their goal: to increase collections by finding more ways to contact their targets.

The trade group wants to change laws including the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, which were written before the age of robo-dialers, texts, Facebook and wide use of cellphones. Collectors use these methods to contact consumers now, but they may open themselves up to fines and sanctions under current laws.

In 2010, the Federal Trade Commission saw complaints against collection agencies rise to more than 108,000, a sharp increase from the 69,000 consumer complaints.

Last year, 21 percent of complaints filed with the FTC claimed that debt collectors used third parties for location information. It's one tactic that has driven consumer complaints to a high.

"I don't believe harassment drives any more return on collections than treating a consumer respectfully," says Mark Schiffman, ACA, director of public affairs.

"Posting anything on someone's Facebook wall is a violation, and talking to someone [that is not the debtor] on Facebook violates the third-party disclosure,” Schiffman said. “Neither one is acceptable. It is unacceptable in any circumstance."

"Debt collectors can use social media just like they might use the yellow pages to find information about somebody," says Schiffman. "They can't do anything misleading. They can't friend people using fake identities. They can't post on your Facebook wall."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio