A UK government official is considering monitoring conversations on social networking sites — for example, Facebook chats. This is done under the guise of preventing terrorism — Britain’s terrorism warning is nearly at its highest level currently — but threatens to cause a backlash against any data-gathering on the popular sites that marketers are increasingly using to reach consumers.
Also, Facebook is considering a virtual currency. This is another attempt at monetizing virtual goods, in the same way that Apple’s new iPhone software allows in-app purchases. Anything that normalizes online checkout is a boon for e-commerce marketers, though, in my opinion.