Facebook’s Zuckerberg Buys His Neighborhood Because, Get This, He Wants Privacy

Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg recently snapped up four homes near his property for $30 million. Why? Because he wants more privacy.

In other news, Facebook announced just this week that keeping your activities private on the social network will now be next to impossible.

The San Jose Mercury News reports that Zuckerberg found that a developer had been promoting a neighboring house with some kind of pitch like “Live next to Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook!” and decided to purchase the home to protect his privacy. Understandable, more or less.

He also purchased three other surrounding homes, even though he is going to lease them to their current residents. Homes in his Palo Alto neighborhood average around $3 million a pop, reports MSN Money. Zuckerberg’s “privacy investment” cost him about $30 million, mostly because one neighbor demanded $14 million.

The story is an interesting bit of irony, considering that Facebook announced this week that they’ll be loosening their privacy rules. One of the major changes will be the removal of a feature that lets you stay invisible in search.

Facebook’s Chief Privacy Officer Michael Richter said yesterday that the change will go into effect soon, and said that the social network decided to axe the feature since so few users actually take advantage of it.

There’s also Graph Search, which was introduced earlier this year. It’s still very poorly understood, and the potential for abuse is huge.

So it’s either time to stop pretending we can maintain privacy on social media, time to quit Facebook once and for all, or time to invest in Silicon Valley property, since we all have $3 million just lying around. But hey, you can’t put a price on privacy, can you?

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