Larry Magid: Facebook Adjusting Its Privacy Settings
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF)—More Facebook users can expect to see a blue cartoon dinosaur popping up in their feeds, reminding them to check their privacy settings.
Facebook had already made the tool available to users who were posting public updates. The feature is designed to remind people how widely they share posts, what apps they use and other privacy issues.
Facebook engineering manager Raylene Yung says the tool is the result of user feedback and decisions by the company to improve the user experience.
If someone signed up to Facebook yesterday as a new user and made their very first post, the default would have been to post it to the public—many people were surprised by that; they thought they were posting privately.
Facebook has received a lot criticism for this; so as of today, new members will, by default, post to their friends only.
This particular feature won’t affect existing users, however.
The way Facebook audience selection works now is that there is a small icon next to your post displaying the last time you posted;so if you last posted publicly, there will be a little globe—which means “public”—and you can change that.
What’s important to remember is that it’s “sticky”—which means if you post public and then do nothing and the post again without changing it, the next post is going to be public.
I think that is still an issue for Facebook users because it’s easy to forget that you made the change, go on later and then suddenly be unpleasantly surprised that the audience isn’t the one that you intended.