Why Facebook Changed Its Privacy Strategy

by admin December 11, 2009 at 2:50 pm

We reported yesterday that Facebook is aiming to get people to be more public on the site and that anyone who hasn’t changed their privacy settings will now see it “recommended” that their status updates, photos etc. be exposed to the whole web. I had a unique opportunity to speak to Barry Schnitt, Director of Corporate Communications and Public Policy at Facebook and quite a frank guy, at length this afternoon about Facebook’s privacy policy changes.

Schnitt said “your understanding is basically correct,” but disagreed with the negative light I saw the change in. Becoming less private and more public is “a change just like it was a change in 2006 when Facebook became more than just people from colleges,” Schnitt told us. “Facebook is changing,” he said, “and so is the world changing and we are going to innovate to meet user requests.” Do you buy that?
The State of the Transition

22 million randomly chosen users have been prompted to re-evaluate their privacy settings so far, Schnitt said, out of 350 million users on the site. Those who have edited any privacy settings before will see those old settings selected as the new default, unless they were more public with their phone number and birthday than Facebook recommends. Facebook doesn’t recommend that you expose your phone number and birthday to everyone, just your friends of friends at most.

Read more: readwriteweb.com