Home Facebook Wants Your Comment on Its Privacy Policy Changes

Facebook Wants Your Comment on Its Privacy Policy Changes

Facebook changed its privacy policy and sharing options last week to make it easier for users to customize how they share their information. It is a process that has been in the works for most of 201, after Facebook proposed a simpler format for its privacy policy in February. Now, Facebook is looking for comments to its changes.

The Facebook Site Governance page outlines all the major privacy changes that the site has made. It is requesting comment by this Friday, Sept. 2 at 5:00 p.m. PDT. What do you think of Facebook’s new sharing options? Do you have concerns or issues that you would like to share with the company?

Since last Friday, there have been 84 comments on Facebook’s page for its recent privacy changes (as of Aug. 30, 9:20 a.m. EST). By Facebook standards, that is not much. The page went live at 2:57 p.m. Friday afternoon, already well past the end of the work day on the East Coast that was already preoccupied by Hurricane Irene ambling up I-95.

What Exactly Was Changed?

In the documents tab of the Facebook governance page, the full change to the sharing and privacy options are outlined. Here is a review in Facebook’s own words:

  • In Line Controls – You’ll see how new in line controls make it even easier to know your audience when you post.
  • Tagging – We explain new ways for you to control the tags that are added to your content and the content that is added to your profile because you are tagged – by using new profile and tag review queues. We also reiterate how tagging works on Facebook, include new ways for you to tag friends and locations in your posts.
  • Profile Controls— We’ve made it even easier for you to manage the information on your profile. Now you’ll be able to adjust who can see stuff on your profile from your profile.
  • Information We Receive – We wanted to provide you even more details about the information we receive when you use Facebook. So, we added more details about the types of information we receive, including things like your IP address or, in some cases, GPS coordinates, and how we use that information to provide you with services.
  • Terminology – We’ve updated how we refer to certain things on Facebook. For example, now when we describe everyone on the internet, you’ll see “Public” instead of “Everyone.” We thought this term was even more clear – we constantly look for ways to make sure our terms make sense to you.
  • Ads and Other Commercial Content – Ads and other commercial content allow us to bring you a ton of free products and services. In case you’re interested, we’ve expanded our explanation of how ads and other commercial content work.

Games Feeds and Control

Some of the most common complaints so far have been the update to games that Facebook released earlier this month that shows what games your friends are currently playing along the with feed notifications that go along with them.

Here is one of the more thoughtful comments so far, from a Facebook user named Kristin.

This is not ok. I have LESS control than I did before. It is impossible to prevent friends of friends from seeing photos or posts in which I have tagged them; I was able to limit access to this information previously. In addition, I no longer have the ability to make all activity on my wall visible to Only Me and no option to specify who can comment on my posts. I would also like to note that the information you appear to have released to the media mentions only the new so-called “increased” privacy controls, but not the ones that you have REMOVED. Based on the new tagging policy, I would like to essentially hide my entire profile. I was able to do this yesterday and I cannot today. It seems quite obvious that this is a DECREASE in privacy controls.

Do you agree with Kristin? What are your specific reactions to Facebook’s privacy changes? Let us know in the comments.

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