Facebook Dials Back How Its 1.28B Users Share Posts

Thursday, 22 May 2014 09:12 AM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

Facebook Inc. is narrowing who gets to see a new member’s posts, dialing back what gets shared on the social network after facing years of outrage over its privacy policies.

Starting today, the posts of new users who begin sharing on Facebook will only be visible to their friends. By contrast, the social network’s default settings previously made posts public, making it easy for people who didn’t know their way around the service to accidentally share information more widely, Facebook said today in a blog post.

The change reflects how Facebook has been working to adjust the site based on what its 1.28 billion users say they want. As the company strives to retain and grow its membership, it is trying to avoiding clashing with members over privacy issues. Facebook said the shift in settings is based on user feedback and it anticipates people will share more frequently if they are more comfortable with the service.

“If people share more publicly than they want to be sharing, that doesn’t benefit us because it leads to bad experiences over time,” said Mike Nowak, Facebook’s privacy product manager. “We want people’s first impressions of Facebook to be as awesome as possible, and we know it’s worse to accidentally overshare than to accidentally undershare.”

For existing members, the Menlo Park, California-based company is expanding its use of a blue dinosaur mascot for privacy that pops up and asks if people are sure they are sharing with the right audiences. The company also runs thousands of surveys about privacy with its users every day in 27 languages.

Privacy Issues

Facebook has had a long history of privacy snafus. In 2011, the company settled with the Federal Trade Commission and agreed to never make deceptive claims about its privacy procedures and agreed to independent reviews of its practices.

In November, Facebook removed language criticized by consumer-advocacy groups about how teens’ content on the website can be used in ads as the company completed changes to its user privacy policies. The revised user privacy rules went into effect that month.

The latest update follows three weeks after the company altered its tools for using Facebook to log into other apps. An option to log in anonymously lets users try out a new product before sharing their identity and personal information. Another tool, which lets consumers decide line by line which kind of information an application can see, is also designed to encourage users to feel comfortable logging in using their Facebook credentials, Nowak said.

The company continues to face litigation about its privacy practices. On May 9, the U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco revived Facebook users’ claims that the social network’s alleged dissemination of information about their online activities defrauded customers and breached its user agreement. Some of the lawsuits’ privacy claims are based on practices that Facebook has since changed, lawyers said at a January hearing.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sarah Frier in San Francisco at sfrier1@bloomberg.net To contact the editors responsible for this story: Pui-Wing Tam at ptam13@bloomberg.net Reed Stevenson

© Copyright 2014 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Undocumented Immigrants Picket White House to Demand Voice

Monday, 28 Jul 2014 21:58 PM

Undocumented immigrants picketed the White House on Monday, urging advocacy groups to refuse meetings with President Bar . . .

US: Russia Violated 1987 Nuclear Missile Treaty

Monday, 28 Jul 2014 21:41 PM

In an escalation of tensions, the Obama administration accused Russia on Monday of conducting tests in violation of a 19 . . .

Doctor with Franklin Graham Charity Who Contracted Ebola in Grave Condition

Monday, 28 Jul 2014 19:36 PM

Kent Brantly always wanted to be a medical missionary, and he took the work seriously, spending months treating a steady . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved