Minnesota, USA –November 30, 2011 – After the ‘privacy’ scare for current and past Facebook users, today may be the beginning of a new era for Facebook; on November 29, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reached a deal with Facebook to help users feel secure in the information that was, and will be put on its pages. Users lost trust in Facebook after it changed its settings to reveal information to others that otherwise should not be revealed; in addition, it was proven that the pages could still be accessed even after the users deleted the profile pages. Since Facebook will need permission from the user to change security settings, it is likely that users will slowly begin to trust Facebook again –perhaps lead to another ‘wave’ of users who are returning or signing up for the first time.
FTC’s deal will require it to do audits of Facebook’s activities in order to ensure that it is respecting privacy; instead of defaulting setting changes to meet what Facebook wants, users will be able to make the decision in opting into a feature rather than discovering the change through a ‘chain status’ and figuring out how to change it back to the setting that is preferred. Although this does not mean that there will not be any issues in the future, it shows Facebook’s commitment to change; Facebook is making big changes that could change its ‘bad’ image into good.
It is always a wise choice to check over all the account and privacy settings to ensure that they are set to where you want them to be; when you explore all the categories, you may discover surprising details that you did not realize before such as the information you’re sharing with third party applications. Remember that you did ‘opt in’ on these when you entered the application, but you are still able to change your preferences. This is also a time where you can ‘clean house’ of your Facebook and get rid of any apps that you no longer use.
Facebook is likely to spread the word about its new ‘privacy’ by creating pages or organizations or other similar ways; perhaps it will give clues on how to maintain the level of privacy you want and what changes you may want to make to reach that privacy level. On the flip side, it may tell you the new settings that are available that could make it easier for your friends to locate you, follow your page, and more.
Facebook is ready, so let’s go!