This past Wednesday, Facebook unveiled changes to their privacy settings, and as usual, this has caused quite a stir amongst their 1 billion users. But are these changes something we should worry about, or is Facebook making our privacy a bigger part of their plan? Only time will tell.
For now, we are left with the changes that will be occurring over the next few weeks, as they roll out to their full membership.
And, what are the changes that we will see?
Most importantly, members will no longer be able to hide their profile from Facebook’s search function. Until these changes take effect, users who didn’t want to be found via Facebook’s own search function had the opportunity to “hide” themselves, so that they would not come up when people searched on their names. According to Facebook, this was not a feature that was well-known or used by a large percentage of people (“a single-digit percentage”), however it was available should people want the benefits of Facebook without being “found”.
Another change will be a refreshed Activity Log, which is where you can review all posts, comments, likes, and shares you’ve made since you joined Facebook. Now, there will be more information about your personal data, photos and status updates spread across Facebook. In addition, they are rolling out a new Request Removal Tool that will help you ask people that have uploaded photos of you to remove them.
In addition, Facebook will be providing information about content you have chosen to hide from your Timeline, and whether that information may still appear in other news feeds and searches. This is especially helpful if you have shared something and later decide to remove it. This new notice will show you who else may have shared the content, and where it is still visible.
The final change will be the context menus where privacy settings will live. Currently, the settings are spread about several different menus, depending on what content you are looking to secure. Going forward, the privacy settings will be called Privacy Shortcuts, and will be a single, organized menu where adjustments can be made.
All of these changes, except our ability to hide our profile, will make it easier to control what is seen and by whom. And Facebook is taking an active role in helping us see where our content is visible, including pictures and videos.
What do you think of the changes? Are they for the better? Worse? Does it matter? Let’s talk.
About Craig Yaris
Craig E. Yaris is the owner of EsquireTech Solutions, which helps small business get found on the social web, whether through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, he can both teach you the effective use of any social network or act as your social media manager, enabling you to reach your clients where they are and when they want to hear from you. He can teach your organization the social media best practices that can help you use the tools of today to cost-effectively increase your bottom line. EsquireTech Solutions brings the social web to your business. Visit EsquireTech Solutions or call 516-495-9107 .