Facebook Image-to-Email

Facebook Image-to-Email was an extension for the Mozilla Firefox Web browser that converted the images used by Facebook to display e-mail addresses into clickable mailto: links. Takedown of this extension was demanded by Facebook on March 13, 2008.

Takedown notice from Facebook

Dear Mr. Finke:

I am writing you concerning the Firefox extensions you posted at:

1) www.chrisfinke.com/addons/facebook-image-to-email and
2) www.chrisfinke.com/addons/facebook-scavenger

These plug-ins are deeply concerning to Facebook because, among other things, they violate Facebook’s trademark rights, its Term of Service, the security of the site and Facebook user privacy. For example, the facebook-image-to-email extension permits people to circumvent Facebook security measures that protect user privacy and the scavenger extension allows people to harvest data off the site in contravention of the Terms of Service and also infringes upon user privacy. A colleague of mine here at Facebook already articulated how your extensions violate the Terms of Service in a series of emails with you on or about January 4, 2008, so I will not repeat them here, but our concerns remain.

I note your stated concern for the visually impaired and understand from your emails that you are legally blind in one eye. You can reset assured that Facebook’s interests are to include people with visual impairments in the Facebook community. Indeed there are already numerous Facebook groups concerning issues faced by the visually impaired and we are proud of that. I also welcome a constructive conversation with you on your ideas on how we might be able to improve our site experience for people with visual impairments but not at the cost of user privacy and the other concerns noted above. Notwithstanding your concerns, it is impermissible for you to unilaterally implement measures that thwart Facebook security, threaten user privacy and violate Facebook’s rights.

I insist that you immediately take down the extensions listed above. I understand that this is the second time you have been asked to remove the problematic material. I further understand that after the first warning you removed the material, evidently aware of the problems the extensions posed, but then placed the extensions back on your website despite our fair warnings. If you fail to permanently and immediately remove the extensions and cease distributing them, Facebook will be forced to become more formal in its effort to protect its rights and the rights of users. Hopefully you won’t choose that path.

Feel free to contact me to discuss.



Mark Howitson
Deputy General Counsel

15 comments on “Facebook Image-to-Email

  1. It didn’t work 100% on my own e-mail address, wich ends in havar.info, it gets decoded as havainfo.
    But other than my own e-mail address, it seems to be working 100%.
    Thank you for this cool extension. :-)

  2. This is great but only goes half way – what it now needs is to add a ‘Download CSV’ link to their profile page that will save their contact info as a CSV file. That would be fantastic.

  3. mega says:

    omg, how lame can the facebook team be. the real reason for them to reject that addon is because they want to force the poor facebook users to communicate internally instead of via email and then by looking at the content of the messages bombard them with specific adds and god knows what other reasons. “blind in one eye”, how rude..

  4. Mepos says:

    Facebook waiving it’s big legal stick. There’s nothing wrong with that extension. It’s just no one wants the hassle of dealing with Facebook legal. One day someone will publish it anonymously.

  5. saya burhan ben+bin usman perluh mahu dapatkan kenderan bermotor dan alat telefon yang lenkap dengan jalur inter.tolong alam semesta sekalian yang aaaada dimuka bumi atau isinya,termasuk hujan atau air sungai jadikan atau bantu saya jadikan barang yang berguna masuk kedalam rumah saya.

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